U.K. to Fund Up to 2 Million Small Provider High Speed Internet Access Lines?
Even if BT is expected to supply most of the wholesale fiber to home or “superfast” connections used by retail internet service providers, the U.K. government seems set to award funds to smaller independent ISPs in the next round of funding, representing coverage of perhaps two million households. The funds should amount to £400m.
The Broadband Delivery UK organization, dedicated to funding rural high speed access, already has been funding pilot projects using satellite (Avanti and Satellite Internet) fixed wireless (Airwave, Quickline and AB Internet)and hybrid networks using fiber and fixed wireless (Call Flow and Cybermoor).
Some smaller suppliers, including Gigaclear and Call Flow, already have gotten funding for commercial rollouts.
There are 27 million U.K. households, so the new funding for smaller providers potentially could reach about seven percent of U.K. households. Virgin Media, operating its own facilities, probably has about 20 percent share of the U.K. fixed network internet access market. If other smaller providers are able to reach seven percent of U.K. households, and sign up perhaps half of those locations, then facilities-based fixed network providers might have something in excess of 23.5 percent share of the terrestrial internet access market.