A fifth of UK using superfast broadband

Superfast broadband is becoming increasingly important for businesses in the UK, with around a fifth of the UK now subscribing to the new service.

A report from Point Topic found that the uptake of superfast broadband is increasing rapidly across the country, aimed predominantly at the business market.

It found that over four million subscriptions to broadband services that deliver 30 megabits per second or more had been issued by April 2013. This means around 20 per cent of the overall consumer market in the UK now uses superfast broadband.

Despite teething issues with rollout, there is more superfast broadband coverage in the UK and Northern Ireland than was expected at this stage. Much of this is down to telecoms and broadband providers ensuring deployment is quick.

“With Virgin Media, KCom, Digital Region and other smaller players like Hyperoptic there’s more infrastructure competition than ever before but it’s true that there will be significant sections of the country who will not have any chance of superfast for years yet,” said Oliver Johnson, chief executive at Point Topic.

It is clear that some areas have much higher connectivity to superfast broadband than others. Although London, Manchester and much of Northern Ireland have high levels of superfast broadband subscription, Wales, northern England and Scotland only have a smattering.

“This is because they’ve had high bandwidth coverage for a while thanks to a joint project with the European Commission, BT and the UK government,” the report said.

“You can also see Cornwall, another area that received early stage funding, starting to gather pace as next generation access deployment takes hold.”

Mr Johnson said that the UK is a long way from reaching a tipping point when it comes to high bandwidth, but he expects superfast to be the norm across the UK within the next two or three years.

With firms increasingly relying on the cloud for storage and processing, this trend towards higher bandwidths across the UK can only be a good thing.