On the back of last month's speed increases BT has now revealed plans to trial 8Mbit broadband. Is the UK about to become a very cool place to surf the web?
You’ve gotta hand it to us Brits, we are not always first out the gate but once we get our head in the game things tend to move pretty quickly. By contrast, when we invent something we suck: football.. cricket… and (once again) rugby.
Now the latest area where our tortoise approach is paying dividends is broadband. Intially off the mark like an asthmatic, arthritic carthorse we maintained a traditional stiff upper lip while putting up with seemingly endless dial-up rubbish, then just last month BT boosts the majority of its default connection speeds to 2Mbit/sec and we come pretty high up in a G7 Broadband League Table (of course on closer inspection it was largely meaningless political nonsense but a podium finish is a podium finish!). Now all that looks like small potatoes compared to our latest progress: BT’s trialling 8Mbit/sec connections.
Yes, yes, we know UK Online has been offering these speeds since November at a jolly decent £39.99 per month but the reality of the situation is once BT gets cracking on 8Mbit/sec itself most ISPs are going to be able to offer it. As Yoda once said: availability leads to competition, competition leads to price cuts, price cuts lead to savings, savings lead to Jedi mastery (or something to that effect). I always wanted a lightsaber… ”who didn’t?”
Right, details: the trial begins next month, will last 10 to 12 weeks and a larger trial will follow that over the summer. With any luck we’ll be leaving scorch marks across our websites by the end of the year. Let’s just hope BT doesn’t forget to enlarge its download caps and increase upload rates at the same time?
Still, BT has earned the right to be smug today and Gavin Patterson, the telco’s MD for Consumer and Group Marketing, took full advantage: ”“Our customers are already benefiting from our new super-fast standard speeds”” he prattled, ”“However, this is a fast moving industry with an ever growing demand for bigger and better content and applications. Therefore we are ensuring we are ahead of the game in developing broadband so we can be the first to deliver those new services to the marketplace.”” (No sniggering)
He continued: ”“However, it’s vital that we get it right, hence the trials. We need to make sure that everything is in place prior to a full launch, to ensure that we deliver the best broadband experience for our customers.”” Not the most thrilling use of linguistics.
Nevermind, pat on the head for the poor chap and we’re so happy we almost lost control of ourselves and published an actual BT broadband promotional family shot… ”Almost”.