100% broadband by 2005?

17 Nov 2003

BT has announced that it is extending its demand registration scheme for ADSL broadband by setting triggers for a further 2,300 exchanges, serving two million homes and businesses. The scheme drives BT’s rollout programme by matching supply to demand: BT sets trigger levels for communities to aim for and upgrades the exchange when registrations for demand hit the threshold. Today’s development means 32 exchanges will be upgraded immediately. According to BT helmsman Ben Verwaayen once all these exchanges are enabled more than 99.1% of UK homes and businesses will be connected to broadband exchanges. The announcement still leaves 600 of the very smallest exchanges without a trigger level, each serving fewer than 300 customers. Ten of these serve fewer than ten customers each. According to BT, 100% broadband coverage of every UK community is achieveable by 2005 only if industry and government pull together. The company stressed the importance of regional partnerships, such as those already in effect in Cornwall and Caerphilly, in achieving 100% coverage. Government plans to aggregate public sector demand in rural areas as well as its role as a major purchaser of broadband for schools, hospitals and all public services, will also play a key role.

United Kingdom