As the year draws to a close, Ofcom has released a new report which looks at the state of broadband and mobile coverage in the UK and how it has developed since last year. It states that all mobile networks have started rolling out 5G and full-fibre availability has increased by 4%; However, it has been said that better connectivity is still needed in rural areas.
Discussing broadband connectivity, the report found that ultrafast broadband can be found in more than half of households, defined as a connection delivering download speeds of at least 300 Mbit / s. It turns out that this figure is the same as last year, which shows that there has not been much improvement in terms of availability.
Things are better on the full-fibre broadband front. Last year, Ofcom found that only 6% of households could find this type of connection; This year, an additional 1,600,000 homes have been able to connect to full-fibre. In all, roughly one in ten households can now receive full-fibre broadband.
Perhaps one of the greatest achievements has been to reduce the number of households in rural areas that are not able to obtain a good Internet connection. Last year, Ofcom reported that 4,000 rural homes are not getting good connections. This has fallen to just 155,000 thanks to the availability of wireless broadband services. From March, households and businesses that are still unable to obtain a good connection will be able to make a request under the Universal Service Obligation, which Ofcom is responsible for on behalf of the government.
On the mobile front, Ofcom said that 4% of the UK is under 4G reception from all four networks. It is acknowledged that things may change a bit in the regions, but there are targets in place which 4G will see reaching 95% of the UK by 2025. Ofcom also underlined that 5G has begun rolling out and is available in 60 UK towns and cities — saying the technology will help support innovative new services for mobile users and businesses in the coming years.
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