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December 18, 2013

Fibre broadband “Super Switch On Day”

Today is “Super Switch On Day” when it comes to fibre optic broadband in rural areas as 5,000 homes  were turned on to be able to receive fibre optic broadband this morning.

The 5,000 premises cover homes and businesses across Cheshire, the Cotswolds, Hampshire, Kent, Medway, Shropshire, South Gloucestershire and Wiltshire that will have their new green street side boxes set live today according to the Telegraph newspaper.
Much of the money that has been invested to reach parts of these areas is from the government and local councils as part of the Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK) project, with BT covering the extra funds. It is these areas that BT themselves wouldn’t roll out their fibre optic broadband too with just their own investment as they said it didn’t make financial sense for them to do so.

It is now estimated that more than 200,000 premises are connected to a fibre optic enabled cabinet as part of the BDUK scheme.

Initially the UK government had planned to have 90% of the UK with connections to fibre optic broadband by the end of 2015, however this target isn’t going to be met and the revised target is to reach 95% by the end of 2017.

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- Filed under: Fibre broadband
- Tags: BDUK, Fibre optic broadband, Super Switch On Day
Author: Mark @ 12:29 pm

December 11, 2013

2016 UK Broadband estimates dropped by 8%

There will be around 2 million fewer homes with fixed line broadband connections by the end of 2016 according to updated estimates by broadband research company, Point-Topic.

Point-Topic have updated their estimates as to how many fixed line broadband connections they expect there to be by the end of 2016 and dropped the figure by 8%. Originally they has estimated just short of 26 million homes, however this recent study now suggests that it will be closer to 23.88 million. The reason for the drop in estimates is because those who currently do not have broadband are a harder market to get them to take up the service if they already don’t have it, the majority of people who want or will take it already have done, persuading the remaining users who don’t have broadband to switch to it or to even take it up is a much harder task.

What is perhaps slightly more interesting is the estimate number of fibre broadband (FTTx) lines is actually 12% lower than originally estimated. Point Topic now thinks there will be 9.4 million fibre optic lines by the end of 2016.

The belief is that by 2020 there will be 20 million FTTx subscribers and more than 23 million superfast households in the UK.

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December 9, 2013

£100 million available for SMEs for Super Connected Cities

The Super Connected Cities scheme is now launched meaning mall businesses can claim up to £3,000 to help with the funding of faster or better broadband.

The scheme is backed with a £100 million pot of money from the government and is currently open to 10 cities across the UK, with a further 12 being included in early 2014. The 10 cities that the scheme is available today are: Belfast, Salford, Portsmouth, Cardiff, Derby, Bristol, Edinburgh, Newport, London and Manchester.

What the Super Connected Cities programme does is allow small and medium enterprise businesses (SMEs) to apply for grant of up to £3,000 each to help cover the cost of installing better and faster broadband connections which will mean that they can then offer customers a faster and better service. The hopeful knock on effect of this is that more jobs will also be created by these businesses due to the improved productivity that they will be hopefully able to offer and also because of the extra productivity then companies will hopefully also be able to deal more internationally with other countries too.

David Cameron, the Prime Minister, said:
“Up to £3,000 of broadband vouchers for small business in these cities is not only a massive boost for growth in the UK, but also has the potential to bring China to Cardiff, Brazil to Bristol and the Emirates to Edinburgh in an increased export market.”

The grants available are for between £250 – £3,000 but this is to help cover any installation or upgrade to a service that is capable of delivering broadband at 30Mb or higher. The monthly line rental charges from then on will have to be covered by the businesses.

SMEs can check if they can apply by going to the www.connectionvouchers.co.uk website there.

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- Filed under: Business Broadband,News

Author: Mark @ 4:43 pm

December 3, 2013

Virgin Media offers new customers £100 credit

Virgin Media are offering new customers who sign up online for their broadband & phone or a broadband bundle packages an extra bonus in the form of £50 or £100 credit on their account depending on which package they take out.

Virgin Media £100 off offerThe extra bonus is running alongside existing offers such as the 6 months reduced price already in place and free installation too and will be available until the 10th December 2013 providing customers take out an 18 month contract.

The broadband and phone packages are entitled to the £50 credit, and this is for the Up to 30Mb, 60Mb and 120Mb packages. They all have line rental at £15.99 per month and come with unlimited UK calls to UK landlines.

  • Up to 30Mb
    • £7.50 per month for 6 months then £15.50 a month
    • Extra £50 off
  • Up to 60Mb
    • £12.50 per month for 6 months then £20.50 a month
    • Extra £50 off
  • Up to 120Mb
    • £20 per month for 6 months then £28 a month
    • Extra £50 off

The Collections packages are where the £100 off is available (excluding the Starter Collection which is £50). These Collection packages include broadband, phone and TV services and come with a 500Gb TiVo box.

  • Starter Collection
    • Up to 30Mb
    • 60+ TV channels
    • £10 per month for 6 months then £20 a month
    • Extra £50 off
  • Essential Collection
    • Up to 30Mb
    • 100+ TV channels
    • £15 per month for 6 months then £28 a month
    • Extra £100 off
  • Premiere Collection
    • Up to 60Mb
    • 100+ TV channels
    • £25 per month for 6 months then £52 a month
    • Extra £100 off
  • VIP Collection
    • Up to 120Mb
    • 225+ TV channels
    • £50 per month for 6 months then £104.45 a month
    • Extra £100 off
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