The UK has the highest take-up of mobile and superfast broadband among leading European economies, according to the country’s regulator.
The new figures published by Ofcom in its European Broadband Scorecard shows the UK leads France, Germany, Italy and Spain (the EU5) on most fronts, including coverage, take-up, usage and choice for both mobile and fixed broadband.
The data show that the availability of superfast broadband has increased in the UK from around 60 percent at the end of 2011 to 73 percent today.
Among the EU5, the data also show that the UK has the highest broadband take-up (all types, by household), at 83 percent; the highest proportion of people to have bought goods online over a year (77 percent); the highest weekly usage of the internet (87 percent); and the lowest proportion of people who have never used the internet (eight percent).
Ed Richards, Ofcom Chief Executive, said: “This is excellent progress for the UK, but there is more to be done. We want to see even wider availability of superfast broadband across the UK, so as many people as possible can enjoy faster speeds to access the internet.
“There is also more progress to be made to ensure consumers receive consistently high quality of service, including faster line repairs and installations for broadband and telephony.”
The regulator has also studied a range of broadband product “baskets”, by auditing the average and lowest prices available for different packages. The UK comes either first or second within the EU5 on all measures of average price, and either second or third on measures of the lowest available price.
However, the regulator said that it is concerned about the time it can take for broadband and telephone installations and repairs to be completed by Openreach, BT’s wholesale arm.
To address this issue, Ofcom proposed new targets in December to keep Openreach’s performance at an “acceptable standard” in future.
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