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UK Web Connections Falling

Gordon Kelly


UPDATED: UK Web Connections Falling

Ok, we get it, the economy is bad - ten kinds of nasty - but is there still really any excuse for this...

In news which makes our hearts (and my Movember Mo weep) the Office for National Statistics has confirmed that for the first time since March 2005 the number of Internet connections in the UK is falling.

The drop is minor - 0.4 per cent to be exact between June and September 2008 - but for a society which is meant to be embracing the Web in almost exponential numbers the trend is somewhat surprising (I can hear our salesmen quaking in their boots from here - chin up suit and tie types). Consequently however it does mean that UK online growth year on year is a meagre 0.9 per cent, virtually a stand still - so get your Auntie Ethels and Uncle Alberts into World of Warcraft people!

Against this broadband is flourishing with a whopping 94.1 per cent of all Internet connections now going online via the (potentially) speedy service while dial up has decreased 18.6 per cent - a happy sign that the whir-crush-buzz-crush-whir days are increasingly behind us.

Also encouraging is - despite average UK broadband speeds falling - the number of users attaining base speeds above 2Mbit is slowly increasing (from 55.8 per cent in June to 57.7 per cent in September).

So in sum, it's not all doom and gloom but come on folks, the Internet is a glorious place these days offering far more than GPU graphs and compromising images of the fairer sex (is that a negative?) so hop aboard and let's get the World surfing. Oh and (to please our sales guys) get everyone to check out TR...

*cough, choke, struggles with self publication issues*

PS - And Movember Donations for prostate cancer... don't forget. Ok, enough and I shall post a picture on this very page.

Update: OK, OK, here you go guys... just don't forget that donation - large or small!


National Statistics Figures (PDF Warning)


November 28, 2008, 2:52 pm

I know someone paying for 20 meg who cannot achieve 5, on a Virgin Cable connection..

I would like to suggest that customer bandwidth be monitored annually and customers rebated for every percentage point under the UK average for other customers on similar connection speeds

e.g. Paying for 20 Meg, averaging 5 Meg over the year

(UK average 8 Meg, rebate =3/8 X &#163(insert exhoritant price here)}... Fair, methinks!

OfCom - where art thou? We need to talk ;)


November 28, 2008, 4:34 pm

@ThaDon - and should people who receive more than the average actual speed be charged more than their contract price?


November 28, 2008, 4:39 pm

Sir - That is one the best ideas i have heard in a long time.

My friend is paying something like &#16324 for 10mb on virgin and they recently change the "Fair use" policy. Now if he downloads 1.5gb at peak time (4pm till midnight) he is capped at 2mb for 24hrs!

So get home from work, decide you want to get a demo from xbox market place 1gb-ish. that's 500 mb - stream some hd vids and watch a bit of iplayer and you're done!

And if you wanted to watch a HD film from xbox market place (around 6-7gb) on 10mb you could set it when you got home from work and watch it that evening. Unless you get capped after the first 1.5gb!!!


November 28, 2008, 5:24 pm

@ gunholio. Sounds like your friend needs to change their ISP. I recently changed from Virgin Media (cable @ 2mb ~ &#16317 p/m) to O2 broadband. I now pay &#16310 p/m (thats for the whole contract period) for 16 meg with unlimited downloads, as I usually download at least 50Gb a month (I have O2 mobile as well so got a discount). In reality though I only get about 8 depending on time of day etc. I also got a free router.

But the thing is when I called up Virgin to cancel my subscription, they instantly offered me a much better deal, from 2 meg @ &#16317 p/m to 16 meg @ &#16313 p/m including BT line rental and a free router. I'm sure if you rang your ISP to say you're not happy with the service you're getting they'd offer you something better to get you to stay. I guess if you don't ask, you don't get unfortunately.......


November 28, 2008, 6:12 pm

@ John Mclean. I really dont think there are enough people receiving more than the average speed to warrant such measures.


November 28, 2008, 7:02 pm

I'm on 20Mb cable, and apart from the past couple of days, I tend to pull at 2.2MB/s, providing the source is decent.


November 28, 2008, 7:03 pm

I used to pay for a 24mb connection and my download speed varied from 14-18mb. I downgraded to 16 mb and my speed varied from 8-12mb. I downgraded again from 16mb to 8mb and the downlad speed I now achieve is 3-5mb. How is this fair? The line is clearly capable of delivering speeds well in excess of the 8mb I currently pay for, yet my ISP still states that "speed will vary from advertised due to location", and that is the reason why I don't get anywhere close to my full 8mb. Absolute lunacy.


November 28, 2008, 8:56 pm

More importantly, when did this Movember stuff start? Gordon, you should have made more fuss!


November 29, 2008, 1:42 am

Do they take into account mobile broadband with these statistics? Cause it could be due to the uptake in people who just stick a sim card thing into their laptops. I know several people who have stopped bothering with a land-line connection. The caps and price aren't much different for some people.


November 29, 2008, 5:58 am

@MarioM & Gordon - Yes, I don't really see it as self-publication when it's for such a good cause. Hope you get a lot of donations Gordon, and please post a pic of your moustache on TR if it grows suitably large and impressive.


November 29, 2008, 6:18 am

@MarioM - I kept it quiet until the last, but I've topped &#163400 so far and it's something rather spectacular! Trust me, it's worth a quid or two for a posting ;)


November 29, 2008, 6:20 am

@Pbryanw - many thanks and much appreciated. A pic will indeed appear if a few more jump in. If not only Pbryanw will be getting one directly :P


November 29, 2008, 6:55 am

OK, before and after is here...!

Tim Sutton

November 29, 2008, 7:56 pm

Good job Gordon! That's a dashing face fungus you've got going on.

Although for some reason I haven't been able to get Y.M.C.A out of my head since I saw those photos.


November 29, 2008, 11:09 pm

Hehe, now that is quite an impressive moustache. I hope you decide to keep it after the Movember month is up :)


November 30, 2008, 5:22 am

@Pbryanw - not a chance ;)


December 1, 2008, 1:45 am

@ John McLean - @ThaDon - and should people who receive more than the average actual speed be charged more than their contract price?..


Then their connection is rigged..? Surely if you're getting more than you're contracted to get then the ISPs limiter isn't working...

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