The BBC (Politics Live, 17 June 2020) has highlighted the challenge we face getting gigabit broadband services to the whole country by 2025.
With little more than 14% of households able to access a full fibre connection today we need to accelerate the pace of building new networks. Full fibre is the end goal, but cable and wireless services have an important role to play. INCA’s members include national and regional companies, local community projects, suppliers and local authorities all working together to bring forward investment to build the networks of the future. Private investment is buoyant with around £6.6bn committed to the independent sector alone up to 2025 (A figure that doesn’t include BT and Virgin investment).
INCA Chair Rob Leenderts said, “INCA members are committed to playing our part in reaching the target and working hard with government and Ofcom to ensure favourable conditions for rapid network build.”
Government can help by ensuring that funding for hard to reach areas is made available in a timely way so that rural areas don’t get left behind. Government also needs to work faster to remove some of the nitty gritty challenges to network build – planning regulations, wayleaves, potential labour shortages and use of existing infrastructure where practical.
We're also running events like our Barrier Busting series which is encouraging best practices around wayleaves, streetworks and planning issues to help accelerate rollout, and our upcoming Designing the Gigabit Nation webinar which looks at innovative approaches for network designers builders that can help to speed up the entire network construction process from deisgn to activation.