Ofcom granted new powers to help with gigabit broadband rollout

The government want a future-proof infrastructure that's able to adequately support everybody.

The UK government has confirmed that they will grant Ofcom new powers to help with the deployment of gigabit broadband. 

This forms part of their larger plan to create a future-proof broadband infrastructure that is properly able to support the growing demands of consumers and businesses across the country.

These powers include but are not limited to:

Network forecasting - Ofcom will be able to share with the government the areas where operators plan to rollout gigabit-capable networks and those in which they don’t. 

This will help inform the government’s decision on where to invest the £5 billion they have to help the public access better broadband. 

A bigger focus on gigabit-capable networks -  The regulator should help the UK “realise its full digital potential” by promoting the take-up of gigabit capable broadband. 

Promoting cooperation and competition in hard to reach places - In areas where it’s too difficult or too expensive to build a new network, Ofcom can instruct providers who are already present in the area to offer up network access and share their equipment.  

Some of these also aim to help make the switching process a simpler experience for customers.

Easier switching - Certain broadband providers still require you to contact your old provider to cancel your service when switching. Under these new rules, your new provider will take care of that to make the switchover much smoother. 

This doesn’t apply to those supplier’s who use BT’s Openreach network who already handle all of your switch for you. 

Better regulation of bundles - Customers will no longer be locked into their bundle if a provider changes their contract or if there’s an issue with one of the services. 

“We’re investing billions so no part of the UK is left behind by the opportunities and economic benefits that faster, more reliable and more secure digital connectivity brings,” said Matt Warman, Minister for Digital Infrastructure.

Source: GOV UK 

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