UK going slow on broadband
The UK is lagging behind its neighbors and the rest of the world on broadband connection speeds according to the latest research from Ofcom.
Ofcom's International Communications Market data provides a snapshot of the £548 billion (€617 billion) communications market across twelve markets. The report reveals that a mere 10% of broadband connections in the UK receive a speed of over 8Mbit/s, compared to 26% in France, 33% in Sweden and 37% in The Netherlands.
The report should fuel pressure on the government to get the proposed Digital Britain blueprint implemented which includes a USO commitment to get the whole population online with minimum speeds of 2Mbit/s by 2012.
While the UK languishes behind on speed it does boast some of the lowest costs for broadband services. On the whole priced have decreased by 10.1% since 2003 to an average of around £16 per month, compared with £20 in the US, £23 in Italy and £25 in Spain.
Meanwhile on the mobile front the availability of 3G and HSPA connections in the UK remain some of the highest in the world, with 3G available to 93% of the population and HSPA to 91%. France has coverage of 77% for both HSPA and 3G, while Germans enjoy a coverage rate for both of 85% .
The UK does lead in digital TV conversion however taking the spot of the country with the highest proportion of households with digital TV on their main set, 88% in 2008, up 3% points in the previous 12 months in the run up to switchover. The US was next with 76% of households having digital TV, up by 6% points on the previous year, closely followed by Spain which had the highest year-on-year increase of 18%, with 74 % f households having converted to digital by the end of 2008.