Swindon remains UK's broadband capital

Swindon is still the broadband capital of the UK, research on coverage has revealed.

Swindon is still the broadband capital of the UK, research on coverage has revealed.

The Wiltshire town has more homes with broadband internet connections than anywhere else in the UK, with an estimated penetration rate of 59.8% at the end of June, a report from analyst firm Point Topic said.

Swindon has held pole position since December 2005, when 51.1% of local households had broadband.

Cardiff came second for broadband coverage in June, although the top 15 UK districts for home broadband access are heavily weighted towards the English home counties and the London commuter belt.

Cardiff is set to benefit further from new communications technology, having been selected by BT for initial tests of its 21CN network upgrade project. The pilots will see 10% of BT subscribers moved to the new platform in March 2007 with the rest in June next year.

Broadband penetration rates have grown steadily throughout the country, the Point Topic research found, but there is still a “digital divide”, with only four in 10 UK households having broadband access.

In rural areas, particularly in Northern Ireland, Wales and the East Midlands, broadband access rates are below one in three households.

Comment on this article: computer.weekly@rbi.co.uk

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