Wednesday, November 02, 2011

Field of Dreams

In the 2001 Hinton Lecture, Sir Peter Bonfield, then Head of BT, made the following comment re; broadband.

"In the movie ‘Field of Dreams’, the hero builds a baseball diamond at his remote farm after hearing voices telling him that if he builds it, the players and the people will come. So he builds it and sure enough, they come, in their thousands. Well, it may work for baseball, but in the UK broadband market, something more than pure faith seems to be needed to create demand."

Given the figures that Ofcom recently released under the new obligations they have acquired under the Digital Economy Act, it is great to see that occasionally dreams do come true. Unfortunately obstruction from BT early on in the process means that the UK ranks 25th in Europe in the provision of broadband according to Akamai's recent Oct 2011 survey.

Key UK numbers

Over 2mbps available in 86% homes
Speeds over 24mbps pass 58% of homes
Average fixed residential user downloads 17GB per month

The key early battleground where BT caused greatest delay was LLU unbundling, first introduced in November 1999, now stands as follows;

2344 of BT's 5589 exchanges unbundled
This represents 41% exchanges covering 89% of households

This unbundling combined with the capability to offer super high speed services offers great hope for the future..........maybe some of the providers will use Kevin Costner in their advertising.