People across the UK suffer from painfully slow and unreliable broadband. And there’s no wonder – the country’s infrastructure is terrifyingly out-dated. Our guest, Greg Mesch, explains more…
The UK is a service-based economy that runs on the internet, and quality, fast, future-proofed internet runs on full fibre. Only last month, the Chancellor, Phillip Hammond, committed to national full fibre coverage by 2033. The company I founded and run, CityFibre, is a major player in this vision.
But for it to become a reality, it is vital that consumers are not misled into thinking they already have a full fibre connection.
Today, 97% of connections use old copper cables to deliver broadband to homes and businesses; this includes the so-called ‘fibre’ services that many of us have today, where fibre is used in a small part of the network but the connection to our homes is still copper. So why is that a problem?
It is universally agreed that full fibre connections – where homes and businesses are directly connected via fibre-optic cables – are superior to copper and part-copper services. They are faster, more reliable and good value. As the rollout gathers pace, consumers increasingly have a choice to make.
However, current Advertising Standard Authority (ASA) rules still allow advertisers to call part-fibre part-copper products ‘fibre’. Earlier this year, DCMS called for these rules to change but, after reviewing the issue, the ASA concluded no changes were needed.
We strongly believe this was the wrong decision, made using flawed logic and research. So, we went to the High Court on 12 June to make our case for a judicial review. Encouragingly, the High Court saw sense where the ASA failed to, and our challenge can now proceed.
This is a missing piece of the advertising puzzle that must be addressed, so that consumers can make a choice, companies can differentiate better connectivity and our full fibre future can become a reality.
This is a guest contribution by Greg Mesch, Chief Executive of CityFibre. All views are Greg’s own and not necessarily those also shared by Which?.
What do you think? Do you have ‘fibre’ internet that’s still painfully slow?