Digital Britain is coming! Meh...
Some of the juiciest bits that we can all forward to along with our responses are…
• Universal broadband coverage – everyone will have at least 2Mbps broadband coverage by 2012. We should bloody well think so. And…?
• For those who can't obtain broadband through copper wiring (approximately a third of the population,) there will be next-generation broadband. Again, yes, and…? This will be 2012 remember. It’s not much to ask and should have been implemented five years ago.
• Existing copper wiring customers will be charged a 50p levy in order for that final third of the population to receive broadband. Ooh. Tax! Sexy!
• A secondary plan for universal 3G and next-gen coverage across the country. Next gen? Radical!
• Reliable broadband coverage throughout the rail network. As opposed to the Russian roulette we get now.
• The aim of introducing mobile coverage on the London Underground. Great – more shouty numpties on phones all over the tube as well as everywhere overground.
• A pledge to "reform and liberalise" the mobile spectrum. Liberalise? More porn? Christ!
• All national radio stations will become digital by 2015. Hang on to those digital radios kids.
• BT will be encouraged to "respond competitively" to Virgin's 50Mbps fibre optic network. That wouldmake sense. Although it’ll probably be a major pain in the balls for BT.
• A freeing up of the digital spectrum to allow mobile operators to offer "next generation mobile network capable of broadband speeds of 50Mbps in the main urban and suburban markets going down to perhaps 4-5Mbps in the more rural areas". No time frame here? Expect it in 2060 then.
• A £300m Home Access Scheme for low-income families. Wide availability of new lower cost devices, new schemes for recycling PCs to low-income households or new prepay mobile broadband. Again, a good thing.
• Ofcom to regulate targeted legal action by “rights holders”. Action to be taken against repeat downloaders of copyrighted material (action likely to be a reduction of service as opposed to being cut off as in France.) How many potential holes in this one? Ooh, probably millions.
So there you go. Nothing too radical and nothing too exciting. A blueprint for digital evolution that should come as no surprise to anyone who isn’t a complete Luddite. And a potential sting in the tail for nasty pirates.
Dear reader, what are your thoughts about it all? What announcements would you like to have been made? More from Digital Britain here….