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Super fast internet plans could waste taxpayers' cash
PLANS to roll out super-fast broadband across the UK should be reassessed – or billions of pounds of taxpayers’ money may be wasted, a North-East telecomms boss has warned.
Covering the entire UK with super-fast broadband will cost about £10bn, but while the government should ensure all areas have broadband, the vast majority of the UK does not need the super-fast version, said Mike Odysseas, managing director of the Stockton-based Odyssey Systems.
Mr Odysseas has urged ministers to focus efforts on areas which contain large numbers of businesses that would benefit from super-fast broadband.
He said: “There are two reasons why people need faster broadband. There are businesses and organisations which need to move large files quickly and there are private individuals who want to download such things as movies. It is clear where the priority should lie.
“The roll-out of broadband needs to be more targeted," added Mr Odysseas. "There is a real danger the government could spend billions of pounds on needlessly rolling out super-fast broadband to parts of the country which would be just as well served with ordinary broadband , such as residential areas, while parts of the UK where super-fast broadband would be hugely beneficial, such as commercial centres, may have to wait. Those parts of the country which currently have nothing should be served by a relatively inexpensive rural wireless service.
“Businesses should not be hampered for the sake of allowing residents in remote areas to stream their favourite television series.”
“By targeting these commercial areas, it opens up such capabilities as cloud computing and session internet protocol – or SIP – for businesses, allowing them to operate more efficiently. This in turn contributes to the economy and provides a return on the Government’s investment in broadband infrastructure.”