Superfast broadband now reaches three in four

24 October 2013

Three quarters of UK homes are now able to connect to superfast broadband, according to communications regulator Ofcom, but some areas of the UK are still struggling to receive a basic 3G coverage.

In a survey, Ofcom found that nearly three quarters (73%) of the UK now has access to superfast broadband, with the number of customers (4.8 million) using the service doubling in the last year.

However, Ofcom also found there are still many areas in the UK unable to connect to basic 3G services. While the service on motorways is good, according to Ofcom, only 35% of the UK's A and B roads are served by all four 3G networks – with one in ten (9%) having no 3G coverage at all.

Ofcom said this problem should be addressed, and is looking at whether intervention from it or the government is needed to fix it.


Ed Richards, Ofcom chief executive said, the growth of superfast broadband is good news, "but there remain considerable challenges, not least in hard-to-reach areas for mobile and home internet services."

"We know consumers increasingly expect superfast speeds, but it's also important to make sure people can connect over a very wide area," Richards added. "This is why we are doing everything we can to support moves to improve coverage in difficult areas such as roads and train lines."

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The use of faster mobile internet connections has improved in the last year, with the launch of 4G. Mobile networks Everything Everywhere, O2 and Vodafone all offer the service, with Three expected to announce its 4G service in the coming months.

The report also highlighted the number of public wi-fi hotspots has more than doubled over the last year, from 16,000 to 34,000.

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