Rural broadband provider brings wireless broadband to Gloucestershire villages

Rural broadband provider Voneus has announced the extension of it superfast capable Fixed Wireless Access (FWA) network to cover premises around the rural Gloucestershire villages of Sharpness and Newton.

Coronavirus: Openreach pauses future FTTP build plans

UK network operator Openreach (BT) has announced that, on account of the coronavirus pandemic, its future build plans for and Fibre-to-the-Premises (FTTP) have been put on hold and that engineering work to extend the network has been scaled-back.

Ofcom relaxes UK broadband consumer protections

UK telecoms regulator Ofcom has relaxed consumer protection rules relating to end-of-contract notifications, speed guarantees and automatic compensation for ISPs during the coronavirus lockdown.

CityFibre completes FibreNation acquisition

UK full fibre provider CityFibre has confirmed that it has completed the £200 million acquisition of FibreNation from TalkTalk Group, following shareholder approval. The acquisition sees CityFibre continue its strategy of investing in the rollout of full fibre broadband across the UK.

O2 UK drops data charges for vital websites

Telecommunications company O2 UK has announced that it won’t charge customers’ data allowance for access to over 20 key sites, such as those providing financial, health and emotional guidance, during the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic.

BT reveals details of new full fibre tiers

UK ISP BT has revealed details of its new full fibre (FTTP) ultrafast broadband plans. The new packages include a gigabit capable plan offering average download speeds of 900Mbps+. Previously, the provider’s fastest tier available to most consumers was its 33Mpbs tier on its Openreach network. From March 23rd 2020, two new top tiers, of 500Mpbs and 1000Mpbs, will be added to its portfolio.

Pressure grows for free home broadband during COVID-19 crisis

The Internet Service Providers’ Association (ISPA) has said it is in the “very early” stages of talks with the UK government over how they can best support the UK public’s increased reliance on broadband during the coronavirus crisis.

Vodafone to provide free mobile data access to NHS sites as coronavirus hits industry

Vodafone has informed its mobile customers that they will not be charged for any data consumed while using National Health Service (NHS) websites and online services.

Ofcom finalises 5G Auction Rules for 700MHz and 3.6-3.8GHz

UK telecoms regulator Ofcom has finalised its rules for 2020’s upcoming auction of the 700MHz and 3.6-3.8GHz radio spectrum bands, which are set to further boost the UK’s new 5G mobile network coverage and broadband speeds.

Inquiry to examine government’s broadband pledge

A cross-party group of MPs have launched an inquiry to assess how “realistic” the government’s aim of ensuring that all UK premises will have access to a gigabit-capable broadband service by 2025 is.

14.3 per cent of UK premises can access gigabit broadband

According to new data from Thinkbroadband, gigabit capable broadband coverage is now available to 14.55 per cent of UK premises, roughly 4.4 million or one in seven premises. This is compared to 12.4 per cent, or 3.7 million premises, that have access to full fibre networks.

1Gbps broadband comes to West Midlands

Virgin Media has announced that it will enable access to its new 1104Mbps Gig1Fibre broadband speed upgrade across over 1 million homes in the West Midlands, starting early next month. This will largely be focused around the large towns of Birmingham and Coventry and their surrounding areas.

Ofcom warns ISPs over email address charges

Ofcom has written to UK internet service providers voicing their concerns over the charges some customers are facing to keep their old email addresses. Many broadband providers charge customers for keeping their dedicated email addresses with them if they choose to change providers. TalkTalk charges £5 per month, while BT charges £7.50 per month.

Alncom targets rural Durham with wireless and full-fibre

Internet service provider Alncom has begun rolling out its offerings of Fibre-to-the-Premises (FTTP) and Fixed Wireless Access (FWA) to deliver gigabit-capable broadband in parts of rural Durham.

BT UK to trial London Underground Wi-Fi

UK internet service provider BT has invited some of its customers to take part in a trial of a new London Underground Wi-Fi service. The trial will start in mid-March of this year, running for approximately 3 weeks. It follows a similar announcement from EE, which announced it would join related trials on the underground network with TfL (Transport for London), also starting in March.

Virgin Media data breach exposes details of 900,000

Virgin Media has published an apology after a data breach resulted in the personal details of around 900,000 customers being left unsecured.

Virgin Media adds 2,500 Northern Ireland homes to FTTP network

UK ISP Virgin Media has completed an extension of its network, connecting 2,500 homes in the County Down, Northern Ireland villages of Moira and Magheralin to its 516 Mbps Fibre-To-The-Premises (FTTP) broadband network.

BT ultrafast network reaches 4.88 million premises

The BT Group’s third quarter 2019/2020 results show that Openreach’s ultrafast broadband network now covers 4.88 million premises across the UK. This represents an increase from 4.2 million in the previous quarter. Coverage is comprised of 2.156 million on FTTP, an increase from 1.81 million the previous quarter, and 2.725 million via, an increase from 2.42 million.

Openreach adds 227 rural UK areas to FTTP rollout

Openreach (BT) has announced that it will add a further 227 new locations in the UK to its rollout of 1Gbps-capable Fibre-to-the-Premises (FTTP) broadband, covering roughly 250,000 new premises. The new locations comprise “harder to reach” rural areas, including market towns and villages, as the operator looks to connect more remote parts of the country to fibre broadband.

Ofcom publishes final Fairness Framework

UK telecoms regulator Ofcom has published its final Fairness Framework guidelines, which it will use to show the way it assesses how fairly customers are treated by mobile, home phone, pay TV and broadband providers. The framework is based around 5 points, focusing on how provider service is experienced by customers and the potentially harmful effects of unfairly delivered service.

TalkTalk completes FibreNation sale to CityFibre

TalkTalk has confirmed that it has completed the sale of its full fibre network FibreNation to CityFibre for £200 million in cash. The deal was initially delayed during last year’s UK general election, following the Labour Party’s announcement of its policy of nationalising parts of the Openreach network and offering free full fibre broadband.

Scotland targets complete full fibre coverage by 2027

In its first 30-year strategy, the Infrastructure Commission for Scotland (ICS) has set out plans for the country to have full fibre broadband available for all premises as well as for direct international 5G connections extending further than London.

BT Chief Executive warns Prime Minister over fibre pledge

BT Chief Executive Philip Jansen is reported to have told Prime Minister Boris Johnson that cooperation between rival broadband providers will be required if Johnson is to fulfil his pledge to deliver access to full-fibre broadband nationwide by 2025.

Openreach extends free fibre offer for new-build contractors

Openreach (BT) has extended its scheme offering free Fibre-to-the-Premises (FTTP) installation for new housing developments of 20 or more properties. Lowering the threshold to 20 from its previous level of 30 or more, Openreach says the scheme will benefit in excess of 13,000 new homes in around 600 housing developments per year.

Cloud computing spending reaches record-breaking level in 2019

Worldwide spending on cloud computing infrastructure was up by 37 per cent in 2019, reaching a record-breaking total of $107 billion.

GCHQ issues data security warning over Windows 7

With Microsoft set to end security support for Windows 7 on Tuesday, UK national intelligence and security agency GCHQ has warned people not to conduct internet banking or use emails on devices still using the operating system.

Scottish government reveals voucher scheme after fibre timetable extended

The Scottish government has revealed that work on its R100 plan to extend superfast broadband to every premises in Scotland will now continue past 2023, missing the initial target of 2021. Those who will not be connected on the plan’s original schedule will now be offered a voucher scheme to allow them to access superfast connectivity from commercial providers.

Ofcom aims to boost UK broadband

UK telecoms regulator Ofcom has launched its Wholesale Fixed Telecoms Market Review 2021-2026 (FTMR), in which it lays out major proposals to “supercharge” investment in the UK’s fibre broadband networks and ethernet services.

FSB details obstacles small businesses face online

Research from the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) has highlighted some of the challenges facing small firms in the online marketplace, including poor broadband speeds and fake online reviews.

Rural Herefordshire broadband fund confirmed

Herefordshire County Council (HCC) has pledged an investment of up to £500,000 in grants to provide faster broadband to isolated rural communities in the region. The investment will build on the council’s joint rollout with Gloucestershire County Council (GCC): Fastershire. The grants will seek to connect isolated areas not targeted under the current rollout to superfast broadband.

Government warns of end to free EU mobile roaming

On the eve of the UK’s exit from the European Union, the UK government has issued a warning that free mobile roaming for UK citizens across the EU, Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway will cease from the end of the 11-month Brexit transition period, on January 1st 2021.

Swish Fibre unveils broadband rollout plan following acquisition

New UK full fibre internet service provider (ISP) Swish Fibre has announced the first 11 locations for its eventual £250 million 10 Gbps Fibre-to-the-Premises network, all of which are in Buckinghamshire.

Ofcom proposes easier broadband and mobile switching

Telecoms regulator Ofcom has announced proposals to make switching between broadband providers easier and also to ban the sale of locked mobile phones (handsets that require “unlocking” in order to switch mobile networks).

CityFibre network begins Cambridge rollout

The first customers in Cambridge have been connected to CityFibre’s Fibre-to-the-Home (FTTH) network. The network will eventually reach 60,000 premises in the city, and represents a major expansion on CityFibre’s existing Dark Fibre network.

CityFibre signs Armed Forces Covenant

Fibre optic operator CityFibre has signed the Armed Forces Covenant (AFC), adding that it will provide job and apprenticeship opportunities for armed forces personnel.

TalkTalk begins ultrafast broadband trial

UK internet service provider TalkTalk has begun trials of its new ultrafast broadband packages, which will see it utilise Openreach’s (BT) gigabit-capable Fibre-to-the-Premises network for the first time.

CityFibre begins Newcastle broadband rollout

CityFibre has confirmed that it has begun its rollout of a new 1Gbps Fibre-to-the-Premises (FTTP) broadband network across the city of Newcastle.

Survey on UK’s fastest and slowest streets for broadband

An annual survey by price comparison site claims to show the UK’s ten fastest and ten slowest streets for broadband download speeds.

Milton Keynes council warns CityFibre

Milton Keynes council has issued CityFibre with a “Red Warning” over the service provider’s handling of its £40 million FTTH rollout. The council revealed that it has received four enquiries or complaints per week over CityFibre’s works, which relate to the setting up of a new 1 Gbps capable Fibre to the Home (FTTH) broadband network in the town, supported by ISP Vodafone.

Finance and insurance firms invest most in cybersecurity

A new analysis of government figures has revealed that UK firms from the finance and insurance sectors invested the most in cybersecurity in 2018-2019.

EE rolls out mobile 5G to 14 new towns and cities

Mobile operator EE (BT) has announced that it is expanding its new 5G ultrafast mobile broadband network to 14 more towns and cities across the UK. Among the major hubs to benefit from this latest expansion of the network are Liverpool, Glasgow, Maidstone, Wolverhampton and Watford.

Plusnet customers suffer patchy connection on 5GHz band

Some Plusnet broadband customers who use the Hub One router have been suffering from patchy internet connectivity when connecting to devices using the 5GHz WiFi band.

Labour hit by second DDoS attack in two days

The UK Labour Party says it has been targeted with a second cyber-attack in the space of two days. Both attacks are said to have taken the form of Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks, in which networks of compromised computers (known as “botnets”) flood a server with requests in an attempt to overwhelm and take it offline.

UK full-fibre coverage edges past 10 per cent

A study from UK consumer broadband advice site has revealed that just over 10 per cent of UK homes now have access to full-fibre broadband. Full-fibre, “gigabit capable”, broadband runs at speeds of 1,000Mbps+.

Government makes Ofcom demands

The UK Government has formally adopted a Statement of Strategic Priorities (SSP), which has seen Digital, Culture, Media & Sport Secretary Nicky Morgan detail a series of priorities for UK telecoms regulator Ofcom.

Ofcom and Openreach trial cheap UK FTTC upgrades

UK telecoms regulator Ofcom has begun a consultation process on a proposed bulk upgrade project which would require technical changes to Openreach’s (BT) quality of service regulation. However, Ofcom says that the changes would make it more efficient for them to upgrade slower lines to superfast FTTC-based broadband ISP connections.

Telecoms industry fastest growing R&D spender

Figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) have revealed that the telecoms industry was the UK’s most rapidly growing sector for research and development (R&D) spending in 2018.

Sadiq Khan announces £10m for London “fibre-backbone”

Mayor of London Sadiq Khan has announced a £10 million investment to improve London’s fibre infrastructure, using the city’s Tube tunnels and public buildings to create a “fibre-backbone” for the capital.

Work begins on £15.1m North Yorks Full Fibre Network

North Yorkshire County Council (NYCC) has announced that the build phase of a £15.1 million full fibre network project has begun. The project will see the rollout of high-speed broadband to 370 public sector sites across the county over the next 18 months. These premises will include council buildings, schools, hospitals and other buildings in the health and education sectors.

Queen's speech reveals updated fibre broadband plans

Government plans to deliver full-fibre broadband to the whole of the UK by 2025 have been updated as part of the Queen's Speech, which stated that Boris Johnson's target would not be pursued.