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Re: Government mulls broadband help

Ianwild
Grafter
Posts: 3,835
Registered: 05-04-2007

Re: Government mulls broadband help

I was at the BSG event last night, and that BBC article doesn't reflect the impression I got from Stephen Timms at all. The whole premise of the discussion seemed to be that the Government was looking at how it could find every way possible NOT to get involved directly in improving the Broadband infrastructure, although the Minister did indeed acknowledge his concern that we are slipping behind many other countries in the world when it comes to our Broadband infrastructure.
I intend to write a blog post on the discussions that went on last night and the BSG in general from my own personal perspective. It's positive that the profile of this issues is being raised, but my biggest concern was that the most vocal stakeholders here seemed to represent the mobile companies. They of course have a vested interest in arguing against the rollout of more wired infrastructure, in favour of their own wireless deployments. That left me feeling somewhat frustrated, as did the general lack of a sense of urgency among the group (who spent a fair bit of effort patting themselves on the back about their success to date).
It's very clear to me how demand for faster broadband will hit us soon, but more importantly it's about removing the capacity bottlenecks present in the existing networks that could easily see things grind to a halt, at which point the whole industry suffers. There seems to be a lack of appreciation of this across the industry, but maybe it's because I'm a teccy first rather than a businessman and I'm missing something. If I am though, last night didn't enlighten me as to what.
Ian
3 REPLIES
Ianwild
Grafter
Posts: 3,835
Registered: 05-04-2007

Re: Government mulls broadband help

I briefly spoke to this guy last night, and he's written up most of what I'd have said (Oh if only I could write quickly!)...
http://blog.ipdev.net/2007/09/government-wont-be-paying-for-ftth.html
Ian
Superuser
Superuser
Posts: 2,676
Thanks: 1,059
Fixes: 8
Registered: 10-04-2007

Re: Government mulls broadband help

Thanks for the link Ian.  An extremely coherent view of the current market position.  Interpreted in simple terms, it suggests that the problem is largely a 'business' problem and not a technology problem.  The costs of deploying the infrastructure are huge £10 Bn has been suggested for the UK - but no single business is going to invest this much cash if they cannot reap the FULL rewards without having to share it with other wannabees.
Of interest are some recent developments in hybrid fibre / electronic technology which should allow simple user installable in-premise termination of fibre links.  Devices currently under test in Germany, but still 1 to 2 years away from commercial availability.
Ianwild
Grafter
Posts: 3,835
Registered: 05-04-2007

Re: Government mulls broadband help

Yes - It's a multi faceted problem, and is a lot more than just a technology one. Someone has to make the initial capital investments, and if it's not going to be consumers it sounds like it needs to be the business community. There are a lot of divisive issues surrounding this topic, and certainly a lot of misunderstandings seem to be present.
From that perspective at least, as I say, I'm really pleased this conversation is happening and people have the opportunity to find out for themselves, and potentially apply some consumer pressure too!
Ian