“Productivity is the challenge of our time??? – that is the stark opening of the Government’s ‘Fixing the Foundations: Creating a more prosperous nation’ which is billed as the second half of the Budget. The plan outlines the scale of the challenge facing the UK and sets out specific measures in order to overcome it, including practical measures that should help implement its goal for a “world-class digital infrastructure in every part of the UK???.
Ofcom yesterday launched an action plan for improving the broadband services that are available to the UK’s small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs). Whilst they found that the vast majority of SMEs are satisfied with the communications and are well catered for, they did discover a significant minority who had less favourable experiences. Ofcom highlighted four issues that they feel need more attention; the availability of superfast broadband, a concentrated retail market structure, concerns around quality of service, and SMEs struggling to navigate the market.
Consumers’ purchasing choices are driven by quality of experience, choice and transparency of traffic management, reports BERECMatthew Evans
The Body of European Regulators for Electronic Communications (BEREC), have published and adopted a timely report on net neutrality and which traffic management policies influence consumer’s purchasing decisions. The headline finding is that consumers unsurprisingly tend to favour packages that align with Open Internet principles*and that as long as “there is transparency, and consumers are able easily to switch provider, such services seem likely to predominate???. This supports the BSG’s view, backed by the UK Government and Ofcom, that transparency and effective competition are the best guarantors of the Open Internet.
Yesterday the European Commission unveiled their proposals on the Digital Single Market, one of President Jean-Claude Juncker’s top 5 priorities.
Their primary goal is to create a market where “individuals and businesses can seamlessly access and exercise online activities under conditions of fair competition, and a high level of consumer and personal data protection, irrespective of their nationality or place of residence???.
Broadband Genie, the independent broadband comparison service, has named Plusnet as the best broadband provider for a third consecutive year in its 2015 Home Broadband Survey.
Plusnet, along with Relish and Sky also received awards from the judging panel that included the BSG’s CEO, Matthew Evans. (more…)
With just over 20 days to go until the next General Election, the main political parties have now published their manifestos and whilst the result is still up for grabs it looks like policy on digital connectivity is pretty settled.
The #Budget2015 had a few more nuggets about broadband and telecoms that previous statements with an ambition for ‘ultrafast’ broadband to nearly all premises and a new Universal Service Obligation for broadband. (more…)
Recent weeks have seen a lot of debate in Whitehall and Westminster around what should be the minimum download/upload speeds that premises and households can access. This raises a number of important questions as to what exactly we mean when we say that broadband is ‘essential’, ‘the fourth utility’ or even ‘a fundamental right’.
The Broadband Stakeholder Group (BSG) today announced that all of the UK’s leading Internet Service Providers (ISPs) have now signed up to a voluntary Code of Practice in support of the Open Internet.
So 2015’s bigger, louder and better (?) Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas has closed. From afar it looked as though this year was more about the direction and theme of the tech industry – with more 4K/Ultra High Definition televisions and an explosion in ‘connected’ devices appearing to be the main two– rather than about one device winning through.
Today the Broadband Stakeholder Group (BSG), launches the results of a detailed survey into the internet usage of 1000 micro-businesses (those with between 0-9 employees). The survey finds that although 87% of micro-businesses have an internet connection, older businesses – those in operation for more than five years – are less likely to be taking full advantage of the internet in growing their business. (more…)
On the matter of net neutrality (FT Editorial Obama is only half right about net neutrality et al) I express strong support for the view that the solution lies in creating “a genuinely competitive market for internet access???.