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Fiber optics

UK.gov pooh-poohs Virgin Media's whinge to Brussels over beefy broadband pot

Virgin Media has whined about the UK government's broadband rollout scheme, claiming that the £680m taxpayer-funded pot of cash doesn't represent "value for money". The cable company has handed its complaint to state aid officials in Brussels. It has also submitted evidence (PDF) to the cross-party culture, media and sport …
Kelly Fiveash, 30 Nov 2015
BT Openreach van

More UK broadband for bumpkins, but have-nots still ain’t happy

Small enterprises have warned that delays in BT's rollout of rural broadband could push them out of business as the government announced that three million rural properties now have super-fast net access. Dr Adam Marshall, policy director at the British Chambers of Commerce, told the Daily Mail: "No one should be patting …
Gareth Corfield, 13 Aug 2015
BT Openreach van

BT's taxpayer-funded broadband monopoly may lock out rivals, says independent report

BT’s monopoly in supplying Blighty’s national broadband scheme may have permanently locked out future competition – according to an independent report card on the £780m public purse project. The evaluation, by economics consultancy Oxera, was required by the European Commission, following its decision to grant the scheme state …
Kat Hall, 20 May 2015
Herdwick sheep walk towards the camera

What time do you call this, BT? Late, state-funded broadband rollout plods on

Readers may recall a time when the Tory-led UK government trumpeted plans to have the best broadband connections in Europe by, well, now. That dream was shattered, however, when progress on the Broadband UK (BDUK) project stalled, in part due to intervention from Brussels' competition officials, who had questioned BT's tight …
Kelly Fiveash, 9 Feb 2015
Ed Zander

UK superfast broadband? Not in my backyard – MP

A MP has questioned the government's ability to provide superfast broadband nationwide if it cannot even meet its commitments "in an urban area such as Cheltenham". Martin Horwood, Lib Dem MP for Cheltenham, told Ed Vaizey, Minister of Fun (and Broadband), that the government's target of 90 per cent superfast broadband and a …
Kat Hall, 5 Nov 2014

David Cameron defends BT's taxpayer-funded broadband 'monopoly': It's a 'success story'

Prime Minister David Cameron has defended BT's command of the £1.2bn taxpayer-funded deployment of faster broadband access, claiming the one-time national telco had worked hard to make the two-year-late, competition-stifled scheme "a success story". He said during PMQs in Parliament on Wednesday that while it was right that BT …
Kelly Fiveash, 3 Apr 2014
Two mobiles man

MPs attack BT's 'monopolistic' grip on gov-subsidised £1.2bn rural broadband rollout

The UK government has completely screwed up the deployment of faster internet connections to Brits living in the countryside because it failed to properly address competition concerns as a result of its awarding all its broadband contracts to BT, politicians concluded today. MPs sitting on the public accounts committee …
Kelly Fiveash, 1 Apr 2014
A cow

Stuff the delays! PM chuffed to have BT's superfast broadband in his constituency

Prime Minister David Cameron already enjoys super speedy internet connections at his constituency home in Dean, Oxfordshire, but locals in the village of Alvescot – saddled with a very slow broadband service – have waited a long time for an upgrade. On Friday, BT invited the PM to make doe eyes at one of the telecom giant's …
Kelly Fiveash, 24 Feb 2014

Yet another pricey Olympics' exec drafted in by UK.gov - this time for broadband spending

The Tory-led UK government is desperate for success stories with its big IT projects. As Whitehall ministers increasingly confess to big problems with various tech deployments, they keep turning to the private sector - and specifically execs who delivered the London 2012 Olympic Games* - to help rescue troubled schemes. Step …
Kelly Fiveash, 15 Jan 2014

Why UK.gov's £1.2bn fibre broadband rollout is a bumbling FLOP

Analysis The Department of Culture, Media and Sport – also known as the Ministry of Fun – is this morning celebrating what it described as a "bumper day for rural broadband". But the declaration of victory may have come a little prematurely from Maria Miller, the Secretary of State for Fun. The £1.2bn taxpayer-funded Whitehall-led …
Kelly Fiveash, 18 Dec 2013

BROADBAND will SAVE THE ECONOMY, shriek UK.gov bods

The government claimed today that a £1.2bn investment of taxpayer money in the deployment of fast broadband networks would return £20 for every £1 spent from the public purse. Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport Maria Miller has come under fire in recent months. The Broadband Delivery UK contracts looked set to …
Kelly Fiveash, 14 Nov 2013
The Register breaking news

Two more counties to get gov-funded bumpkin broadband from... guess?

BT won two more government-subsidised contracts to rollout rural broadband on Monday when it scooped up deals in Oxfordshire and Worcestershire. The telco giant will spend £11m in Oxfordshire installing fibre-to-the-cabinet technology; the local council will cough up £10m and a further £4m will come from the state. The work …
Kelly Fiveash, 6 Aug 2013

BT slammed for FAILING to explain why its broadband investment has shrunk

BT's policy supremo was mauled this afternoon by MPs demanding to know why the telecom giant's investment in the UK's government-subsidised broadband deployment had dramatically shrunk. The company is the only telco to have won any of the taxpayer-funded Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK) contracts to roll out high-speed internet …
Kelly Fiveash, 17 Jul 2013
Sea King lifts horse from mud. Pic: RAF

Spending watchdog SAVAGES rural broadband push

The government's crashingly expensive rural broadband deployment project has failed to demonstrate that it represents value for money to Britain's taxpayers, the National Audit Office concluded today in a scathing report. Just last week, the Department for Culture, Media and Sport, which is steering the Broadband Delivery UK ( …
Kelly Fiveash, 5 Jul 2013

UK.gov finally admits it will MISS superfast broadband target

Spending Review The UK's coalition government now plans to invest an extra £250m to bring "superfast broadband" to 95 per cent of Brits by 2017. It also finally confessed today that its original 2015 target will not be met. Chief Secretary to the Treasury Danny Alexander made the pre-election pledge in the House of Commons this morning as …
Kelly Fiveash, 27 Jun 2013
The Register breaking news

SURPRISE! BT bags more gov broadband cash - this time in Bucks & Herts

BT continues to be the only telco winning any government cash to deploy its fibre network to the British countryside, after it confirmed today that it had won an £18m contract in Buckinghamshire and Hertfordshire. Meanwhile, the narrative about this particular win followed previous deals signed by BT in the past few months, …
Kelly Fiveash, 24 Jun 2013
The Register breaking news

UK.gov's £530m bumpkin broadband rollout: 'Train crash waiting to happen'

The UK government's ploughing of taxpayers' cash into deploying countryside broadband networks has been branded a "train crash waiting to happen". That's the view of a well-placed Whitehall insider who revealed that Blighty's public spending watchdog will next month publish a scathing report into the crashingly expensive …
Kelly Fiveash, 11 Jun 2013
The Register breaking news

Web minister Maria Miller: UK WILL hit 2015 broadband target

Culture Secretary Maria Miller insisted during parliamentary questioning that the government's £680m Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK) project will hit its target of bringing download speeds of at least 2Mbit/s to almost every Brit by 2015. Meanwhile, her department's rhetoric has changed to reflect the fact that many of the rural …
Kelly Fiveash, 22 Apr 2013

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