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E-envoy says UK will overtake Germany on ADSL

The Government's e-envoy Andrew Pinder has predicted that the UK will catch up with European broadband leader Germany within the...

The Government's e-envoy Andrew Pinder has predicted that the UK will catch up with European broadband leader Germany within the next 18 months.

He said, "I predict that within a year to 18 months we will overtake Germany in terms of the percentage of people in this country using broadband."

Pinder, who admits that both the roll out and take up of broadband in the UK have been slower than he would have wanted, believes that recent announcements such as BT's broadband price reductions will help stimulate growth.

In February BT announced price changes as part of its plans to provide one million ADSL (asymmetric digital subscriber line) broadband connections over its network by summer 2003. The telecoms giant cut wholesale line rental for consumer connections from £25 to £14.75 a month, effective from 1 April.

Pinder said, "Broadband has been a big issue but I feel that 2002 has started well with price reductions." A lot of interest has been expressed in ADSL now the price has gone down, he added.

Pinder also identified the use of broadband via satellite technology as being crucial in the UK's more isolated areas. "We want to see more initiatives around satellite," he said.

He added that the Office of the E-Envoy will continue to work closely with industry body the Broadband Stakeholder Group.

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