In the autumn 2016, the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA), the advertising watchdog, started investigating potentially misleading advertising practices amongst internet service providers. In November 2016, the ASA stated the use of descriptions of broadband speeds such as “up to” in broadband commercials could be considered confusing to some consumers. In the spring of 2017, the ASA explored the use of the terms “fibre” in broadband advertisements. (more…)
In March 2017, BT announced its voluntary agreement to legally separate from Openreach, its network division, with the latter becoming a distinct company with its own staff, management and strategy. Ofcom announced today how it will monitor progress towards the legal separation and measure the results.
The £400 million Digital Infrastructure Investment Fund to boost full-fibre broadband deployment is now formally launchedsamiragazzane
In November 2016, Chancellor Philip Hammond announced the creation of a new Digital Infrastructure Investment Fund (DIIF) of £400 million, matched by private finance to invest in new full fibre networks over the next 4 years. After being announced again in the March 2017 Budget alongside other measures to boost investment in digital infrastructure, the Fund was formally launched yesterday.
The Broadband Stakeholder Group (BSG) publishes a report on the practical barriers to deployment of telecoms infrastructure across the UK
- The deployment of telecoms networks is hindered by the variety of approaches to planning regulations by local authorities
- Practical steps could be taken by Government, local authorities and operators to create a uniform approach to planning and ultimately speed up the roll-out of broadband
- Tackling these issues now is crucial to facilitate the deployment of future full-fibre and 5G infrastructure across the UK
With the General elections taking place in three weeks, the main national political parties’ manifestos have now finally been published. As you would expect some areas are not overly detailed but all include a digital agenda with targets on broadband coverage, speed and references to investment in infrastructure.
Ofcom published last month its first report exploring the quality of service that customers from the largest landline, broadband and mobile providers received in 2016, and it was accompanied by an interactive tool designed for consumers. The “Comparing Service Quality” report covers the consumer experience on reliability, performance and customer service. It found that most customers are satisfied with their service overall, though 13% of broadband customers lodged a complaint with their provider in the last 12 months, against 5% of landline and 4% of mobile customers.
Lowering barriers to telecoms infrastructure deployment
Tuesday 23 May 2017 (10am to 12pm)
techUK, 10 St Bride St, London EC4A 4AD
The Broadband Stakeholder Group will be launching a report, commissioned from Analysys Mason that looks at the practical steps the UK can take to lower barriers to telecoms infrastructure deployment. The report makes a series of recommendations to central and local government, as well as operators, on how we can lower the burden on telecoms operators on issues such as permit and notice schemes and wider planning system pinch points.
Following the launch of its consultations on the review of the wholesale local access (WLA) market, Ofcom published today detailed plans to improve access to Openreach’s underground ducts and poles (known as PIA – Physical Infrastructure Access) to competing providers of fibre broadband. The proposed measures are designed to boost investment in the next generation of ultrafast broadband and allow competitors to use existing infrastructure to build their own fibre networks at scale.
- Brexit comes at a critical investment period for the digital communications sector as we upgrade to the next generation of fixed and wireless technologies
- The UK Government can help preserve investors’ certainty by aligning with EU rules for the medium term and re-committing to current regulatory principles
- Retaining the UK’s current capacity to attract talent and resources will be key for the sector
The Broadband Stakeholder Group today published their first report on the implications of Brexit for the Digital Communications Sector, which directly contributes £30.2bn to the UK economy.
Today Ofcom is launching three consultations which form a set of proposals for the review of the wholesale local access (WLA) market – covering the services which use a fixed connection between the local telephony exchange and a premise.
There is no straight answer to this question. The scale of the risks and opportunities for the telecoms industry depends on the future relationship between the UK, the EU and the rest of the world. The ramifications of decades of EU legislation, policies and initiatives in the UK system are difficult to untangle. However, it is possible to identify immediate concerns for the industry and how these could be tackled.
Ending a long period of negotiations with Ofcom, BT announced today its voluntary agreement to legally separate from Openreach. Ofcom confirmed that “it will no longer need to impose these changes through regulation” as initially proposed last year and welcomed BT’s decision. This is a significant reform for the BT Group as Openreach will now become a distinct company with its own staff, brand and Board which will be able to make independent decisions on strategic investments affecting other telecoms providers.
Chancellor Philip Hammond delivered his Budget 2017 speech today, reiterating the Government’s objective to put the UK “at the forefront of the global technology revolution”. The Chancellor announced further details on the £23 billion National Productivity Investment Fund (NPIF) presented in the Autumn Statement and on the new Government 5G Strategy launched today.
The European Commission published last week its annual Digital Economy and Society Index (DESI), ranking EU countries according to their performance in areas such as connectivity, digital skills, use of the internet by citizens, the digitisation of businesses, and digital public services. The UK moved from 6th place to 7th this year behind Denmark, Finland, Sweden, the Netherlands, Luxembourg, and Belgium. Although the UK progressed well in terms of coverage and take-up of superfast broadband connections, other countries have moved faster, encouraging their citizens and businesses to use internet services made available to them.