Peter Cochrane's Blog:
Become a bandwidth scavenger
Never has a subject been so studied, debated and reported with such little understanding and positive action as broadband in the UK. For me this came to a real head recently with the publication of the Carter Report, compounded by my appearance at a broadband conference - the last one I shall ever attend.
The Carter Report is a travesty of misunderstanding, misconception and missed opportunities. On one day our Prime Minister announces that every home in the UK will have 2Mbps broadband in 2011, and the next a Korean minister announces that everyone in his country will have 1,000Mbps in 2012.
We should also remember that the 1,000Mbps in Korea is yours and yours alone - it is not contended, or shared, like broadband pipes in the UK. In the UK it might say 2Mbps on the tin but that isn't what you are going to get!
At that recent broadband conference there were a number of 'take your breath away' statements from network and broadband suppliers. My favourites were:
- If you can figure out what anyone would use 100Mbps to the home or office for - let us know.
- There is no proven market for anything above 8Mbps.
- In the UK there is no demand for high-speed connections.
This was then compounded by comparing the UK's broadband with the rest of Europe. Ouch! What about the rest of the world? Talk about selecting the data set to make yourself look good. As far as I can tell the UK goes from the top three in the EU to around number 20 in the world league tables. All I could think was that these people don't get out much and need to take a trip or two into the real broadband world.
So what are we to do? The present economic recession will most likely preclude any effective government initiatives, while also curtailing the investments by carriers and ISPs. In my view we are definitely on our own - and will have to scavenge for what we can get.