Government says everyone now has 2Mbps internet access

Broadband speed

Everyone in the country now has access to broadband running at speeds of at least 2Mbps, according to the government, with The Department for Culture, Media and Sport introducing a scheme to make such a goal a reality.

Anyone who can't already access internet at these speeds will be given a grant of 350 towards the installation of a satellite that will boost their broadband speeds to up to 20Mbps and a subscription to a service provided by one of the government's broadband provider partners, costing from 25 per month.

The scheme will be run by local governments, with them deciding who is eligible for such a connection. The government thinks up to 300,000 properties will benefit from the programme around the country, although high-intensity usage such as gaming will not be supported via the satellite-powered network.

Digital Economy Minister Ed Vaizey said: "This scheme offers immediate assistance to those homes and businesses in Dorset with the slowest speeds and is all part of our transformation of the UK's digital landscape."

The scheme forms part of the government's "Universal Service Commitment" specified in the Digital Britain report that was presented in 2009 to the Labour government. Although initial plans said the entire country should have a connection of up to 2Mbps by 2012, this was later delayed to 2015.

The next stage is providing superfast fibre broadband to 95 per cent of the country by 2017. So far, it says it is on track to deliver such services and anyone signing up to the government's latest initiative will be able to automatically upgrade to fibre should it be introduced in their area.

Vaizey added: "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 is a massive engineering project and won't happen overnight."

Clare Hopping
Freelance writer

Clare is the founder of Blue Cactus Digital, a digital marketing company that helps ethical and sustainability-focused businesses grow their customer base.

Prior to becoming a marketer, Clare was a journalist, working at a range of mobile device-focused outlets including Know Your Mobile before moving into freelance life.

As a freelance writer, she drew on her expertise in mobility to write features and guides for ITPro, as well as regularly writing news stories on a wide range of topics.