William Eichler 10 August 2016

Broadband speed advertising ‘misleading’, claim councils

Broadband speed advertising ‘misleading’, claim councils image

Advertised broadband speeds which are only available to 10% of customers are ‘misleading’, say council chiefs.

Current rules allow providers to promote ‘up to’ download speeds if they can demonstrate just 10% of their customers can achieve them.

However, the Local Government Association (LGA) warns speeds in many remote rural areas fall well below 2Mbps during periods of intensive use, such as in holidays and after 6pm.

‘The headline ‘up to’ download speed, which can be advertised legally, is misleading and does not reflect the reality of broadband service received across the country,’ Cllr Mark Hawthorne, chairman of the LGA’s people and places board, said.

‘Broadband users deserve greater honesty and openness about the download and upload speeds they are likely to receive depending on their location.’

The LGA said switching from ‘up to’ to average advertised speeds would reflect broadband speeds during busy periods better.

Local authority leaders have also reiterated their call for upload speed to be included as a key measure of performance alongside download speed, and they said this should be clearly advertised to consumers.

The Government has pledged to give everybody the legal right to request a broadband connection capable of delivering a minimum download speed of 10Mbps by 2020 as a Universal Service Obligation (USO).

Councils say Ofcom must monitor the performance of connections delivered under the USO to assess whether providers are adhering to its specifications, especially during peak hours.

The LGA also insisted the USO minimum speed should be linked to the capability of current market speeds and locked in an obligation on Government to continue to raise broadband speeds amongst the hardest to reach.

It should stipulate the USO minimum download speed as a percentage of average national download speeds.

‘Good digital connectivity is a vital element of everyday life for residents and can help them cut household bills, shop online for cheaper goods, stay in touch with distant relatives, access their bank accounts and even run their own businesses,’ Cllr Hawthorne said.

‘As central and local government services increasingly become ‘digital by default’, more people will need to have faster and more reliable speeds.’

SIGN UP
For your free daily news bulletin
Highways jobs

Senior Accountant x2

Islington London Borough Council
£39,462 - £45,594 per annum
There are two roles currently being advertised, one working with our Resources finance team, and one with our Housing and Public Health finance team. Islington, London (Greater)
Recuriter: Islington London Borough Council

Programme Director – Fisheries

Falkland Islands Government
£50,771 up to £56,292
The Programme Director – Fisheries will support the Director of Natural Resources Falkland Islands (FK)
Recuriter: Falkland Islands Government

Principal Engineer/Team Leader Street Works

Bath & North East Somerset Council
£39,880 - £42,821 pa
The Council’s Street Works Team is responsible for managing all aspects of road works and events that take place on our highway network. Keynsham, Bristol
Recuriter: Bath & North East Somerset Council

Social Worker / Advanced Practitioner – Children & Families Service

North Yorkshire County Council
£30,451 - £39,880 per annum pro rata + relocation support
North Yorkshire County Council have a national reputation for excellence. Skipton, North Yorkshire
Recuriter: North Yorkshire County Council

Senior Technician - Asset Management - Highways & Flood Risk

West Berkshire Council
£23,541 to £29,577 per annum (Grade G)
We are currently looking to recruit to two exciting opportunities who will join us and play a role in improving West Berkshire’s highways. Newbury, Berkshire
Recuriter: West Berkshire Council

Public Property

Latest issue - Public Property News

This issue of Public Property examines how how flexible workspaces can lead the way in regeneration for local authorities, Why local authority intervention is key to successful urban regeneration schemes and if the Government’s challenge of embracing beauty is an opportunity for communities.

The March issue also takes a closer look at Blackburn with Darwen Council's first digital health hub to help people gain control over health and care services.

Register for your free digital issue