UK government achieves 95 per cent 'superfast' broadband coverage target

SO-CALLED ‘SUPERFAST’ BROADBAND is now available to 95 per cent of residential and business premises across the UK, according to ThinkBroadband[1]. Over the past few years, the UK government has been working to roll out superfast broadband to much of the country, and new data shows that it’s finally reached this goal. The majority of the British public can now access broadband connections of more than 24Mbps, ThinkBroadband said, and the government backed up these claims[2].

However, it added that this 95 per cent figure is “not a consistent 95 per cent across all communities in the UK.”

Areas such as Epson, Tamworth, Worthing and Watford are pushing into the 99 per cent coverage zone, while the City of London (50.3 per cent), Orkney Islands (66.8 per cent), Western Isles (71 per cent) and Kingston Upon Hull (71.7 per cent) lag behind.

ThinkBroadband explained that this rollout push consists of a “mixture of commercial and gap funded solutions”, and many projects are beginning to focus on and FTTP in commercial areas.

The organisation said superfast roll-outs will continue to improve, potentially reaching 100 per cent within the next few years.

“Reaching the 95 per cent is not the end of superfast roll-outs, DCMS is hopeful that the roll-outs will continue as projects continue to announce use of gainshare allocations and for Wales and Scotland their next contracts are signed,” it said.

“The hope is that roll-outs will eventually deliver superfast to 97% to 98 per cent of premises before 2020, and the focus of a lot of the work in terms of tracking coverage now from ourselves, Ofcom and DCMS will be looking into how likely that looks and how many premises fall into the USO category.”

There’s been great “progress” for all the devolved nations in terms of superfast broadband projects.

However, ThinkBroadband said there’s still lots of work to be done.

“The take away for the nations of Great Britain is that while there are differences in the absolute figures the digital divide has closed down immensely but until all those lines hit 100 per cent there will be more work to be done,” it said.

Rolling out the latest broadband technology in rural areas is still a challenge.

ThinkBroadband explained that “places like Hatherden and Wildhern in Hampshire still have no superfast broadband coverage”.

It added: “The biggest concern people have with the coverage statistics is that they know they cannot get superfast broadband due to the distance from the VDSL2 cabinet, but still presume that Openreach has been paid to deliver it to them and thus feel the projects have been wasting money.” u


  1. ^ ThinkBroadband (
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