Broadband tops list of UK's favourite innovations

Home broadband is by far the best innovation of the past decade, while social networking and reality television are the two worst, according to a survey of more than 2,000 UK consumers.

Home broadband is by far the best innovation of the past decade, while social networking and reality television are the two worst, according to a survey of more than 2,000 UK consumers.

Consumers love broadband for its functionality and the ability to save time and effort, but they resented the time wasted on Facebook and Twitter, researchers found.

Setting up its inaugural innovation index, The Foundation asked 2,243 consumers to rank the top three and bottom three products, in order, that had contributed the most and least to their lives.

Respondents cited usefulness (66%) and the ability to save time (55%). Cost savings were less important (40%), while only 28% said cutting-edge technology was a factor.

Foundation partner Charlie Dawson said it was surprising that home broadband was the winner, if you thought innovation was all about shiny new gadgets.

"It's a reminder of how useful broadband has become for most people in the UK," Dawson said. "It allows us to do lots of things more quickly, more effectively and with a lot less effort, from shopping to dating to finding out stuff. Perhaps this explains why 71% of UK households have broadband despite it being an extra cost that no one had to pay before it existed."

Most loved: the 10 products/services that have contributed the most to Britons' lives over the past decade

Ranking Product/service Positive score (/300)
1 Home broadband 192
2 Online shopping 94
3 Google 54
4 Chip and Pin 49
5 Digital cameras/photography 39
6 Online comparison sites 38
7 Community recycling 32
8 Health labelling on foods (e.g. traffic lights) 29
9 Low-cost air travel 25
10 Consumer GPS/Sat-Nav 24
Source: The Foundation

 

Innov-hates: the 10 products and services that have contributed the least to Britons' lives over the last decade

Ranking Product/service Negative score (/300)
1 Reality TV 94
2 Facebook and similar 86
3 Pop-up advertising 69
4 Twitter 58
5 IVR/Interactive voice response on telephones 48
6 Congestion charging 44
7 Paid-for plastic bags 42
8 DVD membership schemes (e.g. Lovefilm) 37
9 Tracker mortgages 33
10 Public bike schemes 31
Source: The Foundation

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