Broadband has transformed the way that many of us live, work and play. Yet many people live in parts of the UK where broadband still isn’t available or cannot deliver the performance they need to become fully engaged online. And already many countries are moving on to the next level – broadband over optical fibre – to enable video-rich applications and entertainment, to facilitate small businesses and home working, and to support multiple users in each household.
The UK has been slow to deploy next-generation access and fibre-to-the-home. The cost of delivering next-generation access is high and reaching 100% coverage is currently beyond the scope of the major private sector players. This means that without co-ordinated regional and local action, many areas will be left without high-speed broadband for many years to come.
INCA’s vision is to achieve 100% coverage as quickly as possible, nobody left behind. To get there, particularly in areas where commercial operators are less likely to invest, INCA advocates a partnership approach that brings together public, private and community sectors to plan next-generation access regionally and locally. It is our belief that by working together, sharing knowledge and experience, we will facilitate investment, encourage innovation and speed up deployment to deliver a truly next- generation broadband Britain.
In pursuit of this vision INCA developed two key resources under the banner of "Beyond Broadband": an expert online knowledge base and the downloadable Beyond Broadband guide.
INCA's second edition of the Beyond Broadband Guide is an important part of the process of sharing knowledge and information. It homes in on UK-specific issues, including public policy, industry stances, sources of guidance and information, and different project approaches – in other words, what works where.
It is an updated and revised edition to the original guide, which was conceived as a companion document to the FTTH Business Guide, a publication from the FTTH Council Europe that offers practical advice on the business case for fibre-to-the-home. We believe it provides a good template for next-generation broadband project development.