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Europeans take to Broadband like ….

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The appetite for broadband services in Europe is waning, according to research published today by Jupiter MMXI.

It claims that by 2005, 23 million households in Europe are expected to have broadband access.

Take-up will be slow with only 14 per cent of European households using hi-speed services by 2005, it reports.

Jupiter's prediction is more cautious than a similar piece of research published last year by Forrester which predicted that 27 million European homes, or 18 per cent of the population, would have broadband access by 2005.

Analysts blame lack of competition among operators and the high price of services as some of the reasons behind the subdued demand.

It also believes consumers are simply unaware of the benefits of broadband.

This chimes with research published recently by cableco, ntl, which has set aside £5 million to promote its services after finding that two thirds of people hadn't even heard of the term "broadband".

Of the 31 per cent of people who had, ten per cent thought that it referred to radio. And more than half of those who had heard of 'broadband' were unaware of its benefits.

According to Staffan Engdegard, author of the Jupiter report, the "high prices currently being charged for broadband access means that the majority of consumers are discouraged from the technology.

"To attract these people, companies need to improve their marketing message to ensure that Europeans understand the added value of broadband," he said.

Jupiter reckons the Nordic countries will adopt broadband first 30 per cent of households in Sweden, Finland, Norway and Denmark using broadband by 2005. Germany (17 per cent) and the UK (15 per cent) are expected to develop more slowly with France, Italy and Spain all expected to have about 10 per cent of households accessing broadband by 2005. ®

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