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back to article Tories pledge high speed broadband for all in 10 years

David Cameron has pledged that a Conservative government would seek connections to high speed broadband networks for all parts of the country within ten years. The Tory leader set the target during a speech on the economy on Monday. He also said that more than half the country should have access to high speed broadband services …

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Linux

Virgin and 'high speed broadband'

I can see one issue. Virgin as far as I know don't allow other ISP's to resell their services. If Virgin had some sort of wholesale offering for ISPs so say any ISP could buy access at wholesale prices and then provide it to their customers then maybe that might make things a little more competitive.

IIRC AOL were the only ISP which re-sold cable broadband through NTL a few years back. Not sure if this is still the case?

I can't help but wonder too what the governments idea of high speed broadband is?

They don't quote any figures as far as I can see so they could spin "high speed broadband" to be anything like 2Mbit upwards.

Where I live, I can get Virgin 20Mbit broadband but I choose not to because of the usage policy they have (slowing the speed down). I had Telewest a couple of years back before the merger and I was happy with the connection, but now, well it's really NTL with a new name isn't it. I'll stick with my 7mbit connection until Be/O2 unbundle my local exchange.

Rob

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Stop

Why would anyone trust that man.

He just comes across so Blair...

Anyhoo, doing badly compared to the USA how, exactly? I had a dirt cheap, and relatively fast ADSL 7Mb (actual) connection when I was in Britain. Now I've moved Stateside, 20 miles from a major population centre in a city of more than 100K and there's precisely one telephone provider available and one DSL provider available (both of whom just so happen to a company that the FCC spent decades trying to break up before allowing them all to merger with each other all over again). No prizes then, for guessing that my 'high speed' internet is crap and costs me $stupid a month.

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Universal Service Obligation Mk2

Just legislate that no ISP can offer faster than X Mbps service anywhere in the country unless they can also offer a guaranteed minimum of X/10 Mbps from everywhere.

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Joe
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So he's promising...

exactly what's already been proposed/what is already happening??

Despite how much I hate NuLab I could never vote for that smug, policy-less arsehole.

Lib Dems FTW

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Paris Hilton

That's good then

Our hospitals may be full of germs, our schools may be turning out kids with A** grades who still know nothing about anything, we may be facing choices like "shall I put the heating on or shall I have dinner tonight?", our public transport may be a joke, our jobs and our homes may be under threat, but at least we'll all be able to surf the (heavily-censored) Internet at high speed while everything goes down the pan.

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define "High Speed Broadband"

when i was on dial up, and broadband was high speed, then on 256K broadband, high speed was 512k, then 1Mb was high speed, then 2Mb then 5, 10, 20, now 50, etc.

can we have some idea of what the tories consider high speed to be.

on a fairly related note, who cares about having 200Mb/sec to the exchange, when the entire neighbourhood is sharing the same downstream pipe that can only support 5-10 people using it at once

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Variables

The usual check I run for politicians outpourings is that the number of variables in a speech are bullshit multipliers. SuperDave has "would, seek, target, should, facilitate, review, collaboration projects" and many more. He doesn't have a clue about parking his bike so something a wee bit more technical than failing basic mechanics will have him spouting all sorts of nonsense.

I wonder what he means by 'high speed broadband'? the big fudge there is to use the existing wireless coverage as a lot of it will be 'high speed' for that sort of network anyway. That and there's no way the existing cabled infrastucture will stay the same for the next five years.

If the bloody Tories hadn't forced the grab for privatised networks which led to ignoring the infrastucture and hadn't tied up BT with restrictions that made it either uneconomical or illegal to upgrade the networks we might have been a lot further down the line that we are now.

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Unbundle cable

That would make my day.

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Broadband?

What's the bloody point of having broadband if Labour is going to have the Internet a smoking ruin and a shadow of its former self by the time you ever get the chance to do anything to provide it? Burham's filters, Smith's invasive IMP, Phorm, legally sanctioned malware and cracking and RIPA's encryption provisions will make this a meaningless gesture.

For fuck's sake, Cameron, get a bit of perspective. What we want is less of this invasive, nanny-state bollocks and a bit more freedom and privacy. Broadband will get sorted by market forces on its own. Sort out parliament's ideas first. Let me just ask you this before I decide to vote Conservative in the next election (since any other vote will let the nannies back in again): Are you more a Conservative Libertarian or a Conservative Authoritarian? There's a huge difference between these two and one I couldn't even consider voting for under ANY circumstances. If you're a Libertarian, PROVE it and grow a pair, would you? Don't fuck about "fixing" what isn't broken, just fix what really is broken: The British citizen's rights and privacy.

/me takes a deep breath, rolls a cigarette and returns to enjoying what's left of the Internet while we still have an Internet to enjoy and while I can still enjoy a cigarette without some damned nannyist dashing it from my very fingers in "righteous" indignation. Apologies for the language, but everything else seems to have failed to get the point across to these twits.

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200Mbps*

*May be reduced to 200kbps after the first 5GB

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Anonymous Coward

Vote for me.

World-leading Gigabit ethernet to EVERY house in the UK by the end of my term in office, closed source software out of the military and government systems in the same time frame.

Legalised, regulated & taxed prostitution, drugs, etc- if you don't like it, don't use it. No-one's forcing you to. But the new tax, expenditure by tourists and substantially lowered policing costs are helping pay for your broadband.

Provisions for motorway speed limits to be increased, or for the creation of unlimited "fast lanes".

A defence of "bullshit accusation" in some cases; doing 110 in a sports car in the dry on an empty motorway is safer than doing (or trying to do) 70 and cutting in between cars on the M6 when it gets busy. Merely breaking the speed limit is a fine (nothing neccesarily wrong with your driving, but you broke the law and got caught), driving like a fool even under the speed limit will get you endorsements on your license.

More nuclear power, with the waste shipped off to a foreign land or used to provide low-level heating or something. So a small "Carbon Footprint" and a decent amount of fuel, giving more time for renewables to get to a practical efficiency.

More money for computing and engineering in schools

The mandatory teaching of evolution as a demonstratable fact (though some of the finer details may be a little blurred) with non-religion-specific creationism mentioned (as in "Before evolution, most cultures believed in "creationism" or "intelligent design". You'll learn about those beliefs in RE class.")

Rights to privacy in the home secured and defended, right to privacy in public would be essentially destroyed.

Daily drug tests on prisoners- they may be legal on the outside, but you're in here for punishment- we're not going to let you escape into your own head.

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NOT IN GUILDFORD

I live in Guildford and the local exchange does not support speeds greater then 2Mb.

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Anonymous Coward

same crap, different politician

This would be the same David Cameron who can't wait to implement exactly the kind of legislation that everybody is terrified of the current crop of idiots bringing in.

They're all as bad as each other and that includes the t**ts in the Lib Dims.

My next vote is going to "None of the above", even if I have to write it on the ballot paper myself.

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@ac 15:19

I would defentley vote for you

but I have no idar who you are can I jusr right Anonymous Coward on the balote paper?

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@ Red Bren

That is an absolutely brilliant idea, and I would like to nominate you for an award.

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Promising what will happen anyway?

I live in the midde of nowhere in Scotland and even we are supposed to be getting BT's 21CN in 3 years time (according to samknows) - so the promise of broadband almost everywhere in 5 years and definitely in 10 years looks like promising what BT would deliver anyway just updating BT infrastructure (not counting what BT competitors would be putting in).

It would be nice to have any competition around here (it is all BT and nothing else) as fighting their engineer call out charge whenever they bugger up their own exchange and blame me, even when their engineer says it is the exchage, is getting tiresome.

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That'll do nicely !!!

"and the use of wireless technologies where laying fibre optics is impractical or uneconomical"

be able to steal broadband connections no problem then.........when will they get it into their thick heads that wireless will never be secure so is worthless !!!

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It's inevitable without having to pledge it!

Ten years is a long time so it's pretty obvious that all Internet connections will be a heck of a lot faster by then. In just 6 years we've seen 512kb connections jump to 2mb as standard for all ADSL packages and with BT's new digital network with new infrastructure coming online in the next few years we can be sure that 24mb will be the very minimum speed in 10 years.

It's like saying we pledge that in 10 years all cars will be 20% greener. Or a pledge that there will be 25% more websites on the Internet. Well, duh, yes, state the bleeding obvious.

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Think about the storage

It's all very well letting me suck half an Internet every day, where am I going to put it all?

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Hrm

How could they possibly go it? LLU is a cherry pick service, install it in the exchanges where you are likely to get the most money back, sticking it in an exchange where only a few people and a sheep live would lose money so they avoid.

BT have no incentive to do anything, as soon as they spend billions on upgrades, OFCOM tell them to let other people use their lines without any of the investment.

BT should be allowed to upgrade anywhere they like, and if they choose to upgrade a lower profit area (3 people and a sheep) they should be allowed exclusivity over their upgrade until they have made their initial investment back. Yes it would kill competition in those areas, but at least those areas would get DSL.

Small companies which want to serve only rural areas where the profit is low and return on their investment is very long term should be given financial aid to allow them to start investing, maybe zero interest loans on the infrastructure, so they can invest in the areas without having to worry about huge interest rates killing their profit and causing them to go bust.

Maybe BT could be forced into supplying the 0% loans, and in exchange they hold the keys to the LLU, so if the company goes bust, BT gets to take over the lines so they will have no risk of losing their investment.

Cherry picking should be stopped, all exchanges should be rated A to D, A being the most profitable exchanges, D being remote rural exchanges which may not ever see a return on the initial investment. If a company wants to install LLU in a grade A, they have to install 3 grade D's, if they want to install in a grade B, they have to install 3 grade C's. The return on the grade A/B's paying for the low returns on grade C/D.

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Not in Hull

With Kcom? You must be kidding!

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David Cameraman

Is a showman and spouts the biggest load of bullshit I have heard. Although some of it may be based on a good idea it means shit all at present.

His spouting of bullshit yesterday or whenever about him saying he would lead us all out of Labours' Depression (tm) by increasing the minimum tax band or whatnot for pensioners. All this is shit unless it's in his election manifesto, even then it means shit because, assuming he was elected, in the timeframe he would be in charge it would be too late to implement any of these ideas useful or not.

Even Jezza thinks its all shit.

@AC: Vote for me.

I would, but I don't know who you are!

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Go

My Vote

Vote for me.

By Anonymous Coward Posted Tuesday 6th January 2009 15:19 GMT

World-leading Gigabit ethernet to EVERY house in the UK by the end of my term in office, closed source software out of the military and government systems in the same time frame.

Legalised, regulated & taxed prostitution, drugs, etc- if you don't like it, don't use it. No-one's forcing you to. But the new tax, expenditure by tourists and substantially lowered policing costs are helping pay for your broadband.

Provisions for motorway speed limits to be increased, or for the creation of unlimited "fast lanes".

A defence of "bullshit accusation" in some cases; doing 110 in a sports car in the dry on an empty motorway is safer than doing (or trying to do) 70 and cutting in between cars on the M6 when it gets busy. Merely breaking the speed limit is a fine (nothing neccesarily wrong with your driving, but you broke the law and got caught), driving like a fool even under the speed limit will get you endorsements on your license.

More nuclear power, with the waste shipped off to a foreign land or used to provide low-level heating or something. So a small "Carbon Footprint" and a decent amount of fuel, giving more time for renewables to get to a practical efficiency.

More money for computing and engineering in schools

The mandatory teaching of evolution as a demonstratable fact (though some of the finer details may be a little blurred) with non-religion-specific creationism mentioned (as in "Before evolution, most cultures believed in "creationism" or "intelligent design". You'll learn about those beliefs in RE class.")

Rights to privacy in the home secured and defended, right to privacy in public would be essentially destroyed.

Daily drug tests on prisoners- they may be legal on the outside, but you're in here for punishment- we're not going to let you escape into your own head.

You've got my vote.... where do I sign up

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"access to"

Even worse, he says "access to" - so, shove a couple of BT internet phone boxes (remember them?) in every town centre. Job's a good un.

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Anonymous Coward

BT

I wonder how Cameron is going to go about this? Force the laying of optical fibre to people's homes? Force BT to spend the money or create a new company specifically for this role, or force another company to lay down fibre?

There is no way on earth BT would lay down fibre, the expense would be astronomical.

And if Cameron tries to force or create another company to do it, BT are going to object and scream like bloody hell. They'll only agree if the fibre is layed on the basis it is not used to carry telephone calls in anyway - the last thing BT are going to accept is their telephony business being taken out from underneath them.

The issue with BT owning the local loop copper is going to be a major problem and has been a problem for many many years.

This isn't going to be as simple as Cameron makes out. And I can't see the government subsidising this: the expense is going to be huge, and certainly for the foreseable future, the government won't have any money - caused by NuLabour nearly bankrupting the country!

Whilst I would like to see higher speed links, I'm not sure yet there's a business case for it, there are more important things for the government to spend its very limited supply of money on.

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Anonymous Coward

No money, no action.

If they aren't going to pay anything, then nothing is going to happen.

This would've been preferable to the VAT cut, a 500 quid subsidy on optical fibre connections

to the home would be a max of 10 billion if there was 100% take up. We'd have come out of the recession with a world leading fibre network. Instead of just a big debt.

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Anonymous Coward

A message from Dave

My fellow Britons!

Sorry about Mondays speech, what I meant to say was:

We need hi-speed connectivity because our policies mean ,

1.) All those with chronic medical conditions will be monitored in their homes, thus reducing the pressure on our hospitals.

2.) Individual car journeys need to reduce by 30%, because of our commitment to reducing polution and our belief in the benfits of better connectivity.

3.) Nuisance crime will be resolved through online evidence and payments to national charities

4.) Equal access to education assumes univesral access to the UK Digital Commons

5.) All state benefits will be administered online

6.) Working from home means your connectivity to the home must support the applications you use at work.

7.) Better home care for the elderly, includes two-way visual connectivity.

A universal service hi-speed data service is needed because futre public service cannot be delivered any other way, not meaningfully anyway.

To that end we will,

Support industry in developing voluntary proposals for universal access, replacing the outdated obligations. We envisage a minimum guaranteed speed and quality within the higher best efforts claims of 24Mbps, 50Mbps or a 100Mbps. The minimum needs is determined by the application supported, not policitians guessing at what is needed.

Support directly new network investment where it is tied to delivering new and better services, where the old infrstructure will not deliver the needed bandwidth or quality throughput. Rolling out fibre to support iPlayer distribution is not what we have in mind, but anything that could reduce the re-offending costs of £11.5bn per anumn would get a good hearing. Any new increases in car tax or fuel taxes will fund directly this network investment, but the benefits must be proven.

Our vision for a UK Digital Commons, includes Broadband services where the end the end service you are buying is clearly described, where traffic priorities are set by the customer and where future network options are not mortgaged through spectrum auctions.

If the creation of a voluntary industry univsersal service code works for Broadband, we will seek the same for gas, water and electricity. Any increase in cost for individual services will be matched by a equivalent reduction in taxation.

Finally, we understand Lord Carter may include some of these proposals in his digital review. We will applaud him if he does!

Yours

Dave

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@AC: Vote for me.

You've got my vote too, pal. Who ARE you?

Except for the last point. Am quite happy for prisoners to be utterly zonked: happy / docile prisoners mean less trouble and strife for prison guards (I know a few).

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Jon

@Seven_Spades

Bullsh*t

When I lived in the center of Guildford I was on BE getting 10-12 of the 20meg. Then I moved up to just 1.5miles to the north to stouton still a suburb of Guildford but our exchange changed to worplesdon so am now stuck on crappy upto 2mb Tiscali that is slower than dial up in the evening and only lets us watch 1/2hr of iplayer a day. :(

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Ian

ROFL

"He said the Conservatives would appoint "a leading public figure from the creative industries""

So let me get this straight... to improve the UK's technology standing they're not going to put someone who has a clue about the internet like say, maybe Tim Berners-Lee or even better, one of the UK's leading networking experts into the position but they're going to take someone from the very industry that wants to destroy the internet- the music and movie industries?

Cameron said in a speech to the BPI about a year or so ago how he wants to give them more power to control the internet in the UK to try and prevent file sharing. Is this how he plans to do it? by giving them control of the future of the UK's internet infrastructure?

That certainly aint going to improve Britain's economy, it's going to make it a whole lot worse!

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Alert

Oh for fucks sake...

"Rather, the role of government is to facilitate, not deliver."

You're going to vote this idiot in aren't you?

Clearly Labour need their wings clipping, they have for years now but I'm so depressed at the though of my fellow countrymen electing this idiot. I've been living in America for half a year now and one thing is dismally clear to me, the naive neo-con doctrine they refer to (in an orwellian sense) as the "freemarket" is an utter sham, it's not free at all and the entire "free" edifice has to be propped up by an enormous state apparatus yet Cameron (indelibly portrayed in my mind as a shaven, oiled pig) seems to be taking it all at face value. Being a passable populist orator might win him a popular mandate but he will be eaten alive on the world stage, just imagine an apple in his mouth and mark my words.

I'll probably (half-heartedly) vote Liberal... Nick Clegg has clearly been well groomed for power, posh over achiever that he is, and on paper at least he sounds sane. I can't say that I trust him or even like the company he keeps but he does seem to be the best of a bad bunch. I don't know if jingoistic old blighty would tolerate a half-dutch, quarter russian atheist in charge though :-/

It's hard to summon a meh really, now if only Red Ken would throw his hat into the ring!

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