City of London: BT’s failure to rollout superfast broadband in square mile affecting businesses
BT’s failure to roll out affordable superfast broadband in the Square Mile is hampering businesses by making the area less appealing to international companies, claims the City of London Corporation.
Mark Boleat, policy chairman at the Corporation, in a column in City A.M. newspaper wrote that it is a matter of major concern that many of the firms operating in the Square Mile area are regularly complaining about BT’s failure to roll out superfast broadband in the area in a timely manner and as per the level of service required.
He wrote that this kind of market failure is clearly not acceptable not at-least for a top-level global financial centre, and highlights that rural areas are not just affected only by a poor connectivity issue.
Unavailability of fast broadband services at affordable rates is a great disadvantage affecting the attractiveness of the City as well as other London locations, Boleat wrote.
He said that only big organizations can afford dedicated leased lines, and not the rest 13,000 SMBs and 9,000 residents in the City, who are still stuck with slower copper broadband in absence of affordable broadband services in the area.
In response, BT said that dedicated lines are the best for businesses as their demands are typically very different from consumers. The telecom giant said it is working towards rolling out high-speed broadband in the area and confirmed that discussions with the City of London Corporation are going on to increase availability of lower-priced fibre broadband primarily aimed at consumers, home workers and the very smallest SMEs.