Rural consumers fear widening of digital divide

March 5, 2009

It is good news that the regulator Ofcom has given BT the go ahead to connect around ten million households to next generation broadband, but rural broadband users fear that this will mean the digital divide getting wider rather than closing the gap down.

The next generation broadband services will involve the laying of fibre optic cables, but this suggests that most of this work will take place in the cities and larger towns, leaving rural areas struggling on broadband speed of up to 2 Mbps.

The Country Land and Business Association (CLA) says the countryside will not benefit from these plans, while the Rural Services Network (RSN) agrees.

The government wants to use the internet to regulate rural businesses, yet some are unable to get onto the internet at all.


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