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Thursday, 10 December 2009

Broadband mapping - is this what UK needs?

US broadband mapping may have just become easier with the launch of Broadband Scout.

There is huge potential here for someone in the UK with similar data records to create a true broadband map of Britain by county, postcode etc. Luckily, I don't, or I would probably have a go at this, as this is the information the UK is most lacking. It is currently tied up, double wrapped, guarded jealously by corporates who keep pulling "commercial sensitivity" nonsense on people like me who request it. Whilst some people are doing a great job of trying to get your average Joe to report in their broadband connectivity, it is not sufficiently conclusive to make mapping broadband demand possible.

Hopefully, this will now change when someone who isn't involved in the telco world gets on with this job, and makes it available. As a commercial product, that's fine, as long as communities get reasonably priced access to the results for our areas so we can build sensible, sustainable networks without quite so much guesswork or time wasted with the telco smoke and mirrors palaver we constantly face.

And then, Mr Telco, instead of having zero customers buying your stupidly over-priced and non-competitive bandwidth products in places desperate for a community network and true broadband, you can sell lots of these products at reduced but still highly profitable prices to places where you won't have to deal with us ornery, expensive end users and consumers because the community network will be doing that.

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