BT’s 90% Broadband Coverage

BT made a further 22 exchanges broadband-enabled yesterday, taking coverage in the UK to 90% of the population.

BT Wholesale chief executive Paul Reynolds said: “This is a stunning achievement. Nine out of 10 people are now connected up to a broadband exchange and we’ve announced plans to get us to near universal coverage by next summer – well ahead of earlier predictions.

“Our pioneering approach to broadband rollout has been widely recognised, most recently with the OECD rural broadband report putting Britain ahead of the pack for broadband availability compared to the other G7 nations.

“BT has put the UK at 90 per cent ADSL coverage today with our closest competitor countries in the G7 aiming for this level by the end of 2004. By that stage we’ll be past 95 percent and well on the way to topping 99 per cent by summer 2005.”

You can bet that the last 10% will be the hardest – some of of the remaining units are the oldest, remotest exchanges, not nice easy ones in the middle of cities. However, BT is aiming for 99.6% coverage by summer 2005. This represents an enormous amount of work still to be carried out, however: 2,652 exchanges are broadband-enabled, with 2,366 in the programme for next year.

BT’s Press Release

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Fraser Lovatt

Fraser Lovatt has spent the last fifteen years working in publishing, TV and the Internet in various capacities, and believes that they will be seperate platforms for at least a while yet. His main interests at the moment are exploring where Linux is taking home entertainment and how technology is conferring technical skills on more and more people. Fraser Lovatt was born in the same year that 2001: A Space Odyssey was delighting and confusing people in the cinemas, and developed a lifelong love of technology as soon as he realised that things could be taken apart, sometimes put back together again, but mostly left in bits or made into something the original designer hadn't quite planned upon. At school he was definitely in the ZX Spectrum/Magpie/BMX camp, rather than the BBC Micro/Blue Peter/well-behaved group. This is all deeply ironic as he later went on to spend nine years working at the BBC. After a few years of working as a bookseller in Scotland, ("Back when it was actually a skilled profession" he'll tell anyone still listening), he moved to England for reasons he can't quite explain adequately to himself. After a couple of publishing jobs punctuated by sporadic bursts of travelling and photography came the aforementioned nine years at the BBC where he specialised in internet technologies and video. These days his primary interests are Java, Linux, videogames and pies - and if they're not candidates for convergence, then what is?