Feeds

French poor to get net for €1 per day

Cut-price PC plus broadband

Next gen security for virtualised datacentres

The French government has announced its intention to provide 1.2m of the country's poorest citizens with a computer and broadband connection for €1 per day.

Prime Minister Dominique de Villepin heralded the bold plan - part of France's committment to make public services available online - at a Interministerial Committee for the Information Society get-together on Tuesday.

Under it, ISPs will be "encouraged to offer bundles consisting of a low-cost PC with software for web browsing, security and productivity, home tuition for those that need it, and a broadband internet connection at a tariff equivalent to €15 a month or less, all on a three-year contract", IDG News Service reports.

For the most cash-strapped users, the tariff will be pegged at €1, the government has pledged. The criterion for eligibility is likely to be the same as that used for "a project that offers electricity at a special 'basic needs' tariff", IDG notes.

Over half of the French population currently use the web on a regular basis (including those who use it at work), with 38 per cent of homes connected and 10m broadband hook-ups. Unsurprisingly, though, the elderly and poor are less well represented among these netoyens, while being those who might benefit the most from access to public services.

On paper, the scheme has merit, although there must be some question as to whether a €365 per annum net connection would be a priority for those who really are struggling to make ends meet. It appears, too, that the ISPs will have to shoulder the responsibility for getting new IT users up to speed and, presumably, maintaining the supplied equipment. Quite how they take to the idea remains to be seen. ®

The essential guide to IT transformation

More from The Register

next story
UK fuzz want PINCODES on ALL mobile phones
Met Police calls for mandatory passwords on all new mobes
Don't call it throttling: Ericsson 'priority' tech gives users their own slice of spectrum
Actually it's a nifty trick - at least you'll pay for what you get
Three floats Jolla in Hong Kong: Says Sailfish is '3rd option'
Network throws hat into ring with Linux-powered handsets
Fifteen zero days found in hacker router comp romp
Four routers rooted in SOHOpelessly Broken challenge
Netflix swallows yet another bitter pill, inks peering deal with TWC
Net neutrality crusader once again pays up for priority access
New Sprint CEO says he will lower axe on staff – but prices come first
'Very disruptive' new rates to be revealed next week
US TV stations bowl sueball directly at FCC's spectrum mega-sale
Broadcasters upset about coverage and cost as they shift up and down the dials
Tech city types developing 'Google Glass for the blind' app
An app and service where other people 'see' for you
Canadian ISP Shaw falls over with 'routing' sickness
How sure are you of cloud computing now?
UK mobile coverage is BETTER than EVER, networks tell Ofcom
Regulator swallows this line and parrots it back out at us. What are they playing at?
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 10 endpoint backup mistakes
Avoid the ten endpoint backup mistakes to ensure that your critical corporate data is protected and end user productivity is improved.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Rethinking backup and recovery in the modern data center
Combining intelligence, operational analytics, and automation to enable efficient, data-driven IT organizations using the HP ABR approach.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.