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Wednesday 27 May 2009

BBC FTTH coverage

Read more! About time Cumbria got some really good publicity! The BBC are focussing on FTTH and next gen for the rest of the week and there is plenty to watch and read.
BBC Tech pages by Jane Wakefield and Rory Cellan-Jones
LA on TV (sorry about sound quality at the end, am trying to get a digital version of the piece)

I would like to add that I forgot to mention far too many different things - Dig Where You Live, JFDI, C'mon baby light my fibre, the fantastic investment opportunity that is FTTH and the returns UK plc will see from deploying, etc etc etc but p'raps it is time to make our own Fibre TV shows anyway?! Anyone want to feature?

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Tuesday 26 May 2009

Dig where you live works!

Read more! Lyse have proven that getting your customers to dig in the fibre to their own homes really works, with 80% of customers picking up their shovels.

Amazing what a couple of hundred quid saving can do to motivate people.....!
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12 point broadband FTTH manifesto!

Read more! We have no choice but to pursue true broadband as a nation. However, to date (25 years and counting), we have failed to really get to grips with what is required. As the country becomes ever more aware of just what a mess it is in, broadband is actually one of the few investments we could make that stands a chance of turning things round. But do we really know what to do as a country? Or are we going to let a few civil servants and businesses dictate what happens next?

It has been a very long decade plus, often shouting into a lonely emptiness about broadband being as vital as air. However, the tide appears to have turned, and there is more noise now about true broadband than ever before, from so many different voices. At last - we have Fibrevolution!

Are we clear what is required though for UK Plc? Are there too many factions trying to pull in too many directions? Is there a lack of cohesive, joined up thinking on the matter? Are we actually allowing all the voices to be heard, particularly those at grassroots who have broken many barriers and destroyed many of the telecom myths over the last decade, whilst finding and implementing solutions?

Here are some thoughts on the manifesto! Vote LA ;o)

1) There has to be a patchwork of solutions eg FTTH and FiWi. We cannot get FTTH to every single house and business, but we should try that first, starting in the most difficult areas so we learn the hardest lessons which we can them apply in the easy areas. The trick will be ensuring that these solutions connect all the 'islands/lilypads' together and leave no-one in the dark without next gen connectivity because of a lack of standards or advance planning. The Wi in FiWi may well have to be mobile wireless tech in some places for the primary connection but those places should be absolutely minimal in number. However, mobile and wifi and Wimax etc should be ubiquitous for the wireless cloud over the top of the country, not patchy. What we are implying here is that the smallest percentage of the population possible should only have a single choice (eg mobile) for connectivity, not that we should rely on mobile to infill just because the incumbent doesn't want to play. (This is what the DB report is implying and it is a scenario which should be avoided at all costs).

2) The network asset should belong to the people who use it. Not to the country per se as we have cocked up this nationalisation lark far too many times, nor wholesale to the telcos. There is no reason why we can't decentralise, regionalise and localise for effective community ownership. Mutuals have survived the financial crisis far better than private companies and we should learn from that model. Telcos must be prevented from further holding this nation over a barrel with monopolies, or even duopolies, and mutual ownership does that, whilst protecting a level of the telco revenue stream through maintenance etc contracts. And they can become more imaginative about their offerings to consumers in a truly competitive marketplace!

3) Rural areas are the hard bits, where costs will inevitably be higher. However, I have been saying for a decade that demand in such places is higher. If we adopt a sensible approach to ensuring that the return on investment is maximised, rural areas may prove the key to turning around this nation's engagement with the glocal knowledge economy. Why? There are more SMEs in rural areas than urban. Distance from services automatically isolates rural businesses and dwellers who then will use the Net to resolve some of those issues. The positive environmental impact of FTTH etc (deployment and usage) is now proven to be so high that if we see reduced energy and fuel consumption in rural areas (where extra resources are required just to transport electricity, goods and people about), we may start to hit eco targets by changing behaviour. Rural people are used to being self-sufficient and ingenious and we will undoubtedly see innovation and exciting developments across all sectors. (Check out the barrow mole as an example!)

4) It is not about technology. None of this is about what tech is used, how much it costs etc. It is all about connecting people so they can communicate. We must deploy a strategy for internet and IT education that reaches every home and every user, young, old, rural, urban etc. Prime time TV, schools, night classes, etc are required to ensure that everyone can use the Internet and IT efficiently and effectively. This is not about niche geeky programmes showing the latest electronic gadgets. This is about 5 min TV slots or video clips or 1 page of a newspaper which show how to upload a Youtube video, how to search for a website, how to backup your data, how to keep safe online, how to troubleshoot your PC problems. We need an IT equivalent of NHS Direct, manned by skilled staff around the country who can keep this nation online.

5) We have to bin the false scarcity model. Immediately. Bits are not scarce, they are not expensive any more. Scaring people into non-use, or charging them prohibitive amounts to use bits does not work except for the bank balances of the telcos. There should be an international league table of bit usage by nation. The countries using the most bits have obviously engaged more directly with the digital economy. In fact, it should probably be an Olympic event!

6) We should use the digital dividend immediately for broadband into rural and remote areas. We need to comprehend clearly that there need to be different solutions for rural and urban areas, and we need to look at our existing resources and re-use them where possible - ducts, poles, masts, spectrum etc. The HIE method of sitting all the mobile operators around one table to work out which masts could be used and shared saw mobile coverage brought to the Highlands & Islands with minimum disruption and maximum resource sharing. (Kudos to HIE!)

7) The property rating on fibre should be waived for a minimum 10 year period to allow new build, use of existing resource, new entrants and so on to benefit. The Treasury will lose far less by waiving it and letting the infrastructure build-out take place and be used, than it is gaining by attempting to charge it and stymying the development of next generation networks.

8) All planning departments and Highways should be forced to adopt new regulations about FTTH, wayleaves, permissions etc. No business or residential property should be constructed from now on without FTTH (wiring, media kits etc etc) in place, and should an application be made to cross a road with fibre etc, it should be granted unless there is existing resource which could be used instead.

9) Dig where you live should be actively encouraged. UK Plc is footing the bill for this infrastructure build, and the last thing we need is yet another stupidly expensive government IT project. (Which, judging by recent history of such grandiose plans, will fail anyway and undermine confidence yet further.) Want to get to know your neighbours? What better way than digging through to their garden and discussing all you need to create a community network? If the Scandinavians can do it, we can too!

10) Smart meters must be an integral part of next gen and FTTH and the ubiquitous wireless cloud. If I, as a single mum living in the middle of nowhere, found out 4 years ago that you can get smart meters that can create an intelligent local wireless mesh network for broadband connectivity, then people in the utility industries must be more than aware of it. If we install smart meters that are only good for remote meter reading, we have not just wasted an opportunity, we are wasting MONEY.

11) The 2Mbps USO falls into the underachievement, lack of aspiration post from before. It is simply not enough. It is not enough today and it won't be in 2012 and beyond. because what keeps getting forgotten is that once that USO is set at 'up to 2Mbps' there it will likely stay for another decade or more. If Korea can go for 1Gbps by 2012, we need to increase our own ambitions and get real. 2Mbps is pathetic. It may be all the telcos and mobile operators want to invest in, but we have to raise the bar and think about the actuality. Educate our Internet users (see point 4) and they will be as dissatisfied with 2Mbps as they should be. The problem is, as I saw this morning illustrated far too clearly when the BBC were in Caroline and David's house, anyone who has been stuck on dial up has no idea what is now available to do on the Internet, so a reasonable proportion of the country still has NO IDEA what they can do on 2Mbps, let alone 10 or 100Mbps SYMMETRICAL. Let's not keep these people in the dark forever by only offering 2Mbps.

12) FTTC - if we have to, let's go Fibre To The Cabinet in some places to get the creative juices flowing, but let's do it right. There has to be urgent talks about unbundling those street cabs and the first mile/inches of copper cables. BT should not be given that on a plate. We need a competitive marketplace and to be realistic, that needs to include local communities in that competition. Nearly every community I have been to in the UK (and that is _many_) has a local champion or IT specialist or computer fixer who has ideas about local content, local delivery of network resource etc. Don't just keep it for the telcos.


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RT: fibreactive

Read more! RT @fiberactive: Poor Old BT : BT is a badly run hedge fund that happens to own a phone network (via @FTtechnews)

Nuff said.
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Broadband Aspirations

Read more! It strikes me, more and more forcefully, that what we are doing in this country is encouraging people to aspire to crap broadband. We make out that 2Mbps should be more than enough for anyone - if I hear that once more this week, block your ears, my screams of wrath and frustration are likely to be loud! We hear more and more about how speed is not the issue, quality is - well, maybe speed isn't the be all and end all, but having a fast connection doesn't half help!

We take people to the cleaners for using more than their fair share of a network with abundant capacity and spread horror stories about how hard their pocket will be hit if they overstep the 'false scarcity' mark with down- and uploads. We fail to attack the issue of symmetry and yet in a consumer content creation world, we need people to upload as much, if not more than, download. We don't fill our primetime TV with exciting programmes about what you can do with superfast broadband, as they do in Korea where MMPOG online gaming competitions are prime time; we don't educate our users. I watched again this morning as a major SEO/internet marketing headache happened in front of the camera - who types the URL of a site they know the URL for into Google? Just about bloody everyone in Britain! Do they not know what the location /address bar is for?!

We don't encourage kids to aspire to be games programmers and push the envelope, or even make sure all of our teachers are au fait with the online world. We generally teach kids very basic first gen website design, instead of letting them explore cutting edge techniques from smart developers etc. Etc etc etc.

In fact, this lack of aspirations is across the board, through general IT to true broadband. And yet, it is not normally a British trait. We used to aspire to be 'great', to conquer the world, to have an Empire. Now, we seem content to allow private companies and government to drop the bar to as close to ground level as possible and then we attempt to crawl under it. Luckily, the more adventurous and creative are trying to limbo under it, whilst yet others are determined to raise it as high as possible.

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BBC broadband coverage

Read more! The next three days sees BBC news and website coverage of the broadband issue, both from the point of view of those who cannot get it to those who already have more than the UK is currently able to imagine.

This morning the BBC were on 'my patch' recording interviews with a family who can still only get dial up. This is a family who can't access Youtube, iPlayer or any of the other applications many now take for granted. Their children haven't even tried these apps, nor do they benefit from the opportunities presented by the technology. It is hard to remember how painfully slow dial up is until you try to get on facebook which took around 5 mins just to get to the log in page and sign in. Uploading photos, checking out your friends' profiles etc is a process that could not be fitted easily into a day let alone a quick flit in and out to see how your friends are doing. And experimenting, investigating and playing with the very many tools etc out there on the Net is impossible.

(Apologies for quality of video, it's on my phone - if you want to see better quality, watch BBC Breakfast News tomorrow!)

Rory did focus on the USO at one point during the interview, and once again, it is hard to see how 2Mbps could be enough for ANYONE except those who have been forced to spend their days waiting for an 8Mbps anti virus download and who are ignorant of the many possible other things that they could be using the technology for because they haven't had the opportunity to try it.

2Mbps is NOT enough as a USO. It is lowering the bar to the lowest common denominator, rather than upping it so that all our citizens are able to innovate, educate themselves, and help to drag Britain to a position at the forefront of the digital economy. And rural broadband is vital when funds are allocated, which they undoubtedly will be to solving this problem now it has finally become so high profile.

What I am still unsure about is whether this coverage will actually begin to pick up on the very many people who are out there resolving these issues whilst the telcos fiddle. Whilst Cybermoor and Alston will be getting free publicity tomorrow for their funded network when the fibres are lit, many projects around the country are now in development which are being and will be resourced locally and by the community, owned by their communities, and now (watch this space) supported by industry.

Whether the Digital Britain report can even begin to take on board the speed at which solutions are being implemented and the impact that has on Net usage, network capacity etc, we can only wait and see. In the meantime, watch the BBC!

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Notspot surveys

Read more! After years without any reliable information gathering about where the notspots in the UK are which cannot get 'broadband', (careful with the definition of that term because if you use the 1984 def of 2Mbps+ symmetrical, most of the country is still without broadband), we now seem to have two notspot surveys/reports ongoing.

SamKnows and the BBC have been collating information on notspots and this will be shown on BBC News tomorrow Wednesday 27th May. If you are in any way interested in the broadband 'state of the nation', you need to keep an eye on BBC news and the website over the coming days, particularly the comparison of Uk with other countries, and the message which hopefully will come over loud and clear that this Govt needs to start spending on basic and vital infrastructure. ThinkBroadband have just announced their notspot survey too so if you are in a crap spot or a notspot, add your details.

The mapping clearly shows that this problem is widespread and affects all areas of the country, even those within urban/sem-urban areas who one would assume would have decent coverage. The previous notspot report conducted by ABC and CBN showed exactly the same back in 2004/5, so sadly, little has changed in 5 years. Whilst for some the speeds may have risen, for those in notspots and crapspots, it really hasn't. Far too many people are still reporting substantially below 512kbps, and there are plenty below 2Mbps. For those who have tried, even 2Mbps isn't sufficient for Youtube, iPlayer etc when the quality of the network, in particular the first mile, remains so dire.

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Friday 15 May 2009


Read more! "50 Jigabytes... Not to the home yet but coming...." And not a correction in sight from Mr Gary Shainberg BT's VP of Technology & Innovation Support aka Mr JFDI (cough, splutter). Bring on the bandwidth in Israel, anyone else fancy moving there with us?

Oh, you want a link to the video with BT's new 'chap' in charge of getting things done?! If BT are working so hard with the Open Source community, perhaps they want to look at Open Sauce Digging from Chris et al. (There is more to come from other rural areas of the country but we can't get them off their connections long enough to edit the vids!!!)

Thanks to everyone for the calls, tweets, DMs, skype msgs, emails, diggs, and much more. I _am_ trying to be diplomatic (honest!) but let's face it,if you want your points putting across, you hang on to your company cars, pensions etc and I'll just keep being me with your input!! At least between all of us, some of the messages are getting through, it seems.
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Power to the people (JFDI)

Read more! OK, now we have the next two episodes of the JFDI FTTH dig in Wray. For those within the industry, it seems there is quite some interest in the approach taken, which whilst not necessarily upholding the highest professional standards of industry has allowed many to consider that there are other routes to the superhighway than those which take years and cost billions.

Let's face it, the truth of the matter is that for 25 years, industry and government have been sitting around on their arses talking about FTTH. I and others have been growing increasingly frustrated, despite involvement for me for only half that time, at the apathy shown and barriers invented to prevent it happening. Those affected MOST by this failure are, of course, the ones who will inevitably pay for it in the long and short run - the consumers and the taxpayers.

It had to get to the point where the people said, "Enough is enough. If you are just going to sit there talking, we will get on with it." And lo and behold, it has now started. It's not a great surprise, in other countries similar Dig Where You Live projects exist too. It's just that the majority of those have had the support of utility companies, or local and central government funds.

We can no longer pretend that the incumbents are the only ones who can play in this area, and accept that more and more people are going to start taking matters into their own hands to take our families, businesses and communities into the world of 21st century fibre optic communications that many other countries are already well and truly entrenched in. Pun intended.

It is to be hoped that the Digital Britain report shows an awareness of the DEMAND for this level of connectivity TODAY, and stops assuming that all internet users are muppets, willing to be BROADCAST to and be PASSIVE. We are not. As a post-industrial exporter myself (one of those with so-called digital skills), I and many thousands of others have been watching the Department of Trade and Industry (and now DCMS too) allow a private company or three stymie our business development, hinder our economic growth, restrict our productivity, and force our children to suffer limited levels of interaction with what can only be termed as the 'real world' these days considering how much is on the Internet that they need to engage with. Ironic huh?

On with the show......
Part 1 - in the stables. Splitting the fibre to feed to two homeworkers with Lucid star, Dave!

Part 2 - in the utility room. Showing the end connects being done, also starring Dave.

There are lots of photos taken by Chris on Picasa to peruse too.

Nice to see the war of the Roses may finally be well and truly over. This is a northern project, with players from Yorkshire and Lancashire working extremely well together! Am just off to see Chris now (from Cumbria - by 'eck us northerners can cross borders, just as fibre can!) so will report back when I have had a play on the first rural fibre connection within the UK I have ever managed to get my hands on! And it ain't for want of trying ;o)

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Thursday 14 May 2009

All three vids of the JFDI FTTH crew

Read more! Not sure what the BBC are playing at. We could have had a half hour series on this dig on prime time TV judging by the amount of interest!! All three videos are now on Youtube and the links are all here for you, with the third hot off the press this very morn. With suggested music to accompany this fab feat!

I need to stress that one of the most important reasons for this JFDI FTTH exercise is the fact that there is no ADSL in the vicinity. Whereas we have been pushing for FiWi for years (Fibre--> wireless), these connections are having to be wireless-fibre because of the lack of fibre in close proximity, nor decent copper for that matter.

This situation is rife across rural UK but has managed to vanish under the radar over the years, despite attempts to highlight the huge number of notspots and the impact this has on rural regeneration, quality of life, innovation, business development and so on.

However, there are some advantages to this route of starting with wireless backhaul. Firstly, the wireless connection is symmetrical and so users can upload and download at the same speed. The importance of upload speeds and capacity should never be under-estimated in this age of consumer generated content and prosumers. Secondly, the options for increasing the backhaul are open to competition and technology neutral - no reliance on nor even presence of copper capable of taking over from the wireless here. And unsurprisingly, those operators wishing to get involved in this type of rural connectivity have been coming out of the woodwork even prior to this video series.


"Ain't no stopping us now" - Part 1 of the Great British fibre diet starts

"C'mon on baby, light my fibre" - Part 2 of the JFDI FTTH dig

"Pickin a bluebell in the merry month of May" - Part 3 of the rural fibre dig video series.

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Wednesday 13 May 2009

JFDI Community Broadband Books

Read more! More Amazon orders today. Please, please, please, if you want the JFDI Community Broadband books, especially in light of what has been laid and lit in the last couple of days, order them here on Lulu.

Why? I knew you would ask that! Because Amazon want the books for cheaper than I can get them published, and because of their system, it is desperately environmentally unfriendly for me to have them shipped from the south of England (the printer for Lulu) to Cumbria, to stick in Amazon's order slip, and despatch them back down south to Amazon's warehouse. Which I can only do at a loss, both from the printing and shipping.

Tis easy, if you want the books (which seemingly, many of you do looking at my email hashtag for Amazon Advantage recently), please buy them from Lulu and save the planet and my non-existent wallet. Cheers!
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C'mon baby!!!

Read more! The first JFDI FTTH rural connections are lit!! Excuse me whilst I just crack open a bottle of champagne. It has been a VERY very long 14 years waiting for today.

The videos will be up on Youtube shortly and I want to be the first to publicly congratulate Chris (who I thought would never, ever understand how important fibre was in her diet!) and all the rest of the team who have made this and much more possible. Watch this space!!

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Tuesday 12 May 2009

Dig where you live

Read more! Dewayne has just posted this article about dig where you live in Norway.

Do you think if we say this out loud often enough, Britain might f*&^ off the large telcos and JFDI properly, as others have?!

Quick update on the rural FTTH stuff happening today - tis now on Youtube. All power to their mole ploughs etc. GREAT STUFF!
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Monday 11 May 2009

Rural broadband Dilemma

Read more! The story from the providers on video...

As today has seen, we can now start to disprove the rural broadband payback arguments.
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Rural Village tops the fibre lay

Read more! Dig where you live!! Just had a call from a rural village who TODAY, right now, have started to lay the first miles of their community owned fibre optic FTTH network, beating pretty much everyone else in the UK to the post.

On top of a mountain, the digger has just arrived to start the work to connect the first houses. By the end of the afternoon, this community will be able to boast initial first mile connectivity that other communities (eg Ebbsfleet) can only dream about. No copper in this network, just glass and broadband at the speed of light.

This is an unfunded project - no public sector money here - whose entire ethos of JFDI has been borne out of a deep frustration at the failure in this country to solve the massive problems that lack of true broadband has caused in rural areas. There are now very many people for whom the approach to Digital Britain by our government and telcos is now so inappropriate, slow and so yesterday, that they have taken the issue into their own hands. This will not be the last community who are talked about here in the coming weeks and months who are JFD FTTH - I know of more than several others who are very close too.

The work that has gone on to reach this stage has been startling in its ability to find the right people and companies who can help to deliver FTTH, and get them involved. There is an appetite amongst much of our commercial sector to actually get on and do this, which is not always apparent when you hear the bureaucrats and industry 'specialists' etc talking about FTTH. The drive is coming from the consumers and communities, so it is difficult to see how anyone can say the demand is not there, particularly for roll outs such as this into rural communities who have patchy mobile coverage, little or no ADSL, etc.

Photos and video to follow later. For those who think BT et al are the only ones who can afford and should deliver FTTH for UK Plc, think again!!!

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Thursday 7 May 2009

Virgin trials 200Mbps

Read more! Virgin bonds DOCSIS 3 lines together to get 200Mbps for 100 users in Ashford, Kent. BUT, no sign of symmetry and therefore how can you establish demand without testing what users may want it for?

Article on PC Pro This approach still fails to understand what many people _want_ to use their connection for - sharing, be it videos, music, video conferencing ie talking to their friends and family, or using innovative apps. Most of us are still unable to share any video longer than a couple of minutes or video conference because the upload speed or capacity are just not available, especially for an enjoyable experience. People aren't doing it because they CAN'T. Not that they don't want to.

We keep seeing research saying that the majority of users are only emailing, surfing etc with a little multimedia thrown in on the side. Until users are able to start playing around on symmetrical connections (bear in mind we don't even have SDSL in this country), the apps that are likely to evolve from that availability, and hence consumer education about, and uptake of, such apps, will remain severely limited.

Look at SMS - that flies, and makes untold millions for the mobile operators because it allows users to COMMUNICATE easily. Two way comms with user generated content. All the mobile operators provide is the transit channel.

The first company to offer 100Mbps symmetrical deserves a prize for consumer awareness. In the meantime, the assumption that all consumers are still happy in the 20th century broadcast world remains flawed.
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Has Digital Britain got talent?

Read more! Time for a debate. In light of the DB report, and the discussion, unconferences etc which surround it, Bob Franklin of TelcoConsulting has sent this article through to stimulate the thinking we need for the future. Some very interesting points are raised, and we would welcome your views.

The future of Digital Britain is uncertain. The usual excuses given are lack
of broadband demand, high costs to build fibre to access our homes and
money but the real gap is in understanding why we need big investment
and the benefits for Britain.

The Government’s Digital Britain interim report stresses content but future
services will not be delivered without very much better infrastructure for
fast broadband. The so called last mile of local access networks taking
fibre to a cabinet in the street or up to the home or the use of wireless
technology is absolutely crucial. The existing old copper network of BT
and parts of the cable networks need to be upgraded by deploying new
technology. Further, 50% of homes have no infrastructure choice other
than BT and that cannot be right.

Today the digital information revolution is in its infancy. There will be an explosion of home usage as we seek more information for online shopping, for our education, for our health, entertainment and leisure. Simpler devices throughout the home would dramatically drive up demand and free up the family information
bottleneck -the single PC. Demand is always uncertain for the future –
none of us in the telecoms industry ever predicted the growth in mobile
service and more recently text messaging but the mobile infrastructure
and network capacity was soon built to give users what they wanted and
it makes money for operators.

Build costs are an issue but new infrastructure must be installed to every
town and community. There are alternative access technology solutions,
some can be overhead on poles and digging up the streets is cost effective
given the investment is for the very long term. The Victorian engineers
rightly over engineered the capacity of our London sewers. We have good
civil engineers in Britain today who would build for the future and it would
create lots of new jobs.

On regulation the focus should be encouraging investment while any competition concerns can be resolved given time. Finding the money today is a challenge for everyone. In telecoms it may come from existing operators, new players or the Government. BT and Virgin have proposed some new investment in access and fibre but have financial pressures while a few new small firms and even some local
authorities are interested.

New players would be a real shake up for the sector – maybe a retail giant or a utilities company or some content player should enter. After all we needed a duopoly to get things moving in the 1980s, cable TV led us in the 1990s and additional new players, such as Orange, showed us how in mobile. Big government investment could
stimulate development. In the USA President Obama has announced a significant telecoms public funding programme and Australia have too while Korea and Japan just get on with it anyway.

So what for Digital Britain? Ultimately of course it is the customer who will pay. Some would pay now to get 100Mbit access, most of us can and will pay over time and
those with special needs and poorly served areas should be supported through new universal service funding.

The real gap is not the demand, the build or the money but the lack of understanding and confidence. People do not yet fully understand why they need information via digital services and how they will be used and why pay – this will come in time. Confidence is about doing things well.

With 30 years in this industry, some 15 years ago I wrote that Britain was
the world’s laboratory for the telecoms sector. We must innovate to get
ahead of the game again and invest in infrastructure now and show the
world that Digital Britain has got talent. When an unknown singer can
attract 100 million hits on the web from Britain’s Got Talent think what
social and business benefits let alone innovative talent could be unleashed
with digital access services to 25 million homes in Britain.

We need: existing operators to invest a great deal more - new players to
enter the infrastructure market and the Government to deliver some
target funding, a small sign was given in the recent budget, at areas and
sections of the community for the wider public good. It is time to get off
the line, stop the talking and file all the policy reviews - it's time to start
digging and get Britain’s first mile online.

Bob Franklin
May 2009
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