United Kingdom homes to get faster broadband speeds by 2020

Andrew Cummings
December 20, 2017

Unreliable signalThis week, the National Farmers Union held talks over the issue of poor mobile coverage and broadband connectivity many people in rural areas receive.

The UK government has rejected BT's offer to voluntarily invest up to £600 million to deliver 10Mbps broadband to 99% of the UK by 2020, instead opting for a regulatory Universal Service Obligation (USO).

New rules could follow this model, a Government spokesperson told the Independent, but how much internet providers are obliged to cover in costs is yet to be determined.

Broadband providers will now have a legal requirement to provide high-speed broadband to anyone who requests it, no matter where they are in the country.

British homes and businesses will have a right to demand high-speed broadband by 2020 after the government said it would impose new regulation to help the 1.1 million premises who can not access decent speeds.

"However, we welcome BT's continued investment to deliver broadband to all parts of the United Kingdom".

"We know how important broadband is to homes and businesses and we want everyone to benefit from a fast and reliable connection", said Culture Secretary Karen Bradley.

"We are grateful to BT for their proposal but have decided that only a regulatory approach will make high-speed broadband a reality for everyone in the United Kingdom, regardless of where they live or work", Culture Secretary Karen Bradley said.

The government has already helped push "superfast broadband" connections of approximately 24 Mbps across 95 percent of United Kingdom homes and businesses, estimated to reach 98 percent by 2020.

Regulator Ofcom said this month that 4 percent of United Kingdom premises, or around 1.1 million, could not access broadband speeds of at least 10 Mbps. Still, the official body wants to be sure that no homes are left behind.

BT said it respected the decision taken by the Government.

BT who are in charge of much of the infrastructure for broadband in the United Kingdom will now have to work harder to deliver these speeds to more areas of the UK.

"Alongside this, we'll work closely with Government, Ofcom and industry to help deliver the regulatory USO".

The government says that only a regulatory USO will create "sufficient certainty" for broadband customers.

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