UK broadband expansion slows header image

A broadband consultancy company has dropped the number of households it expects to be connected to super-fast internet in 2016.

Point Topic had previously forecast 26 million homes around the UK would be connected to high-speed networks in the next two years, but it has now said a number of factors mean this will drop to 23.88 million.

Analysts at the firm point to the fact offline households are struggling to cover the high costs of conventional broadband connections, but also say that the government's BDUK scheme - which aimed to help people in rural areas access the internet - has stalled and is not reaching consumers as quickly as had been expected.

BDUK had been expected to be a huge hit among customers in the UK but high point-of-sale costs mean many are turned off the idea of paying for it, especially when there are a number of other alternatives available on the market.

Satellite broadband, for example, has a download speed of up to 20 Mbps and this proves more than enough for the vast majority of rural users who simply want to check their emails and stream HD videos.

One of the main advantages of this approach is that it allows for an easy connection no matter how remote a location it is operated in - as satellite broadband simply requires a dish and an open sky to be pointed at.

Many consumers have complained about the complexity of cable-based broadband advertising in recent years.

An advert created by BT was banned last month (November 2013) for making misleading claims about the coverage of its fibre optic service in Manchester. 

A poster released by the company stated its business services "arrived in Manchester", but this was ruled to not be reliably true as fewer than half of city centre postcodes could access it.

"We considered the claims were likely to be interpreted as suggesting BT Infinity was generally available to businesses in Manchester," an Advertising Standards Agency statement revealed.