BT and SSW partner to provide satellite broadband

BT has signed a contract with Satellite Solutions Worldwide Group plc (SSW) which will see subsided satellite broadband offered to UK homes stuck with a slow connection.

BT has signed a contract with Satellite Solutions Worldwide Group plc (SSW) which will see subsided satellite broadband offered to UK homes stuck with a slow connection.

While SSW is already a niche broadband provider, BT’s part in the deal will see the former be able to take advantage of the larger provider’s satellite capacity and data, allowing internet packages to be offered to poorly served areas of the country.

The agreement works as part of the Government’s Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK) scheme, which is aiming to ensure that superfast broadband has reached 95% of the UK by 2017.

The Government will offer to fund the cost of connection fees, installation, modem and dish.  Those who can benefit from this would need to have a home or business connection of less than 2Mpbs.

Digital Economy Minister Ed Vaizey said: "Our rollout of superfast broadband has already reached an additional 3.5 million homes and businesses who would otherwise have missed out. We are making tremendous progress, but it’s a massive engineering project and won’t happen overnight.

“This scheme offers immediate assistance to those homes and businesses in the most remote areas with the slowest speeds and is all part of our transformation of the UK’s digital landscape."

SSW CEO Andrew Walwyn said: "We are delighted to be working with BT and a number of other satellite parties to extend the reach of high-speed broadband in the UK. The UK Government’s scheme both removes the barrier-to-entry cost for customer on the acquisition of the kit, and at the same times increases our addressable market in the UK.

SSW specialises in rural broadband, and offers a range of packages including its superfast ‘up to 30Mbps’ satellite service, as well as a basic maximum 10Mpbs connection with 10GB of monthly usage.

An estimated 300,000 homes could benefit from the BDUK scheme, with vouchers issued to eligible households.  Those in areas with poor broadband can find out if they are eligible by contacting their local council.

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