When it was announced last year by ex Communications Minister Lord Carter, many critics were highly sceptical that the Broadband Britain commitment could be achieved. Some say that the now defunct labour Government was desperate to give voters some positive news, when in the recession riddled run up to a General Election, good news was hard to find.
Culture Secretary Jeremy Hunt announced on Thursday he didn’t think there was “sufficient funding in place” to meet the 2012 goal.
Mr Hunt said at an industry conference on 15 July
“Last month, I announced that we were supporting a universal service level of 2 Mbps as the very minimum that should be available.
“I have looked at the provision the Government had made to achieve this by 2012. And I’m afraid that I am not convinced that there is sufficient funding in place.
“So, while we will keep working towards that date, we have set ourselves a more realistic target of achieving universal 2 Mbps access within the lifetime of this Parliament”.
Steve Robertson, chief executive of BT Openreach, told BBC 5Live’s Drive program on Friday that the goal could not be achieved without around £2bn in public funding.
However some analysts have put the figure far higher than that at nearer £100bn. Research firm Point Topic estimates that around 2m homes are currently unable to get speeds of 2 Mbps. Point Topic analyst Tim Johnson fears the government has a bigger challenge on its hands than it realises.
“These two million premises aren’t in clearly defined areas. The only way to reach the have-nots is to engineer a service upgrade across wide areas.
“That could bring the total number of houses needing upgrades closer to 5 million, which would cost the government more”.
In less formal discussions, the Government continues to brief that the broadband industry itself must find solutions to the problem. However with no new money available, and no commercial case for BT or other providers to fund the set-up costs, it’s difficult to see how rural not-spots and even some urban areas will get connected unless they opt for alternative options like satellite broadband.
Tariam’s satellite broadband solution for homes TooWay ( http://www.tariam.co.uk/
Tariam Managing Director Andrew Walwyn said
“We’re here for everyone out there in the UK that’s in a not-spot or who can’t get the broadband service they need over wires. We’ve spent 2 years gearing up for the demand we know is there, we have a dedicated and certified installer network that’s now completely nationwide, ready to install and deliver broadband anywhere in the UK, today”.
The only criticism of the satellite broadband ( http://www.tariam.co.uk/
Andrew went on to say
“There is a cost involved in our TooWay solution, but with the ability to then shop for goods and services like insurance, holidays and utilities online, our customers tell us they can recoup those costs in a few months, and then they’ve got a free, reliable, fast broadband connection wherever they live”.
National newspapers are now publishing details of online money saving websites every week, alongside stories of people who’ve saved £100s and even £1000’s on their every day expenses purely by researching prices and shopping online.
The Government’s ‘Digital Champion’ Martha Lane Fox, an original co founder of lastminute.com, has launched the “Manifesto for a Networked Nation” in a bid to get everyone of working age online by the end of 2012.
“If everyone was online, total savings would be in excess of £22 billion a year with households saving an average of £560 per year.
“We also know that 3.6 million low-income households are missing out on savings of £1 billion a year by not being able to pay bills online”.
Many people don’t realise is perfectly possible to switch utility providers several times a year to take advantage of promotional and money saving offers, but these kind of deals are normally only advertised online. For those caught in the digital divide, satellite internet is the answer.
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Tariam is Europe's premier supplier of satellite broadband Communications. Using the latest TooWay technology we can provide an IP connection from any site straight into the Internet backbone, or via a private circuit into your data centre.