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Universal Broadband Access (USO)

Monday 31st July, 2017

Universal Broadband Access (USO)

On Sunday the Government announced* that it has received a voluntary offer from BT to meet its universal broadband ambitions – the majority of which would be delivered by Openreach.

BT Chief Executive Gavin Patterson said “We are pleased to make a voluntary offer to deliver the Government’s goal for universal broadband access at minimum speeds of 10Mbps.

"This would involve an estimated investment of £450m - £600m depending on the final technology solution. 

"This investment will reinforce the UK’s status as the leading digital economy in the G20. We already expect 95% of homes and businesses to have access to superfast broadband speeds of 24Mbps or faster by the end of 2017. Our latest initiative aims to ensure that all UK premises can get faster broadband, even in the hardest to reach parts of the UK."

The government has yet to accept the offer and it will still go ahead with a consultation on introducing a legal right to request such speeds. However the plan could see Openreach proactively building a network that would bring speeds ‘significantly faster’ than 10Mbps to many households.

At BT, we’re aiming to get 99% of the UK connected to 10Mbps by either December 2021 or December 2022, depending  on the a mix of technologies used, some of which are subject to trial and industry consultation. 

The government’s Universal Service Obligation (USO) proposal gives people the right to request 10Mbps minimum broadband speeds as a right that will be introduced by 2020.  

* https://www.gov.uk/government/news/universal-broadband-to-reach-every-part-of-the-uk

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