The UK has invested over half a billion pounds this year to boost connectivity for more than 330,000 premises. The announcement comes alongside a £33 million investment to connect more than 17,000 homes and businesses in rural Derbyshire to high-speed broadband.
This announcement for Derbyshire follows earlier contracts awarded in Shropshire, Cambridgeshire, New Forest, Norfolk, Suffolk, Hampshire, North East Staffordshire, and Oxfordshire—bringing total investment to over £530 million.
Sachin Agrawal, UK Managing Director at Zoho Corporation, said: “Connectivity investment in rural areas is crucial to empower regional businesses across the UK. Businesses and their locations are key to unlocking local economic growth and distributing wealth throughout the country more effectively, and internet connectivity plays a vital role here.
“Technology plays a central part in creating a seamless experience for employees, whether they are at home or in the office. Tools that both enable real-time communication and collaboration that allow team members to simultaneously work efficiently on tasks, keep staff continuously connected, regardless of location.”
Building Digital UK (BDUK) reports hitting a significant milestone, with 929,700 homes and businesses now having access to fast and reliable gigabit broadband.
“By improving connectivity in regions across the UK, businesses also have more options when it comes to office locations, given the freedom to reduce overheads and move away from busy urban centres,” added Agrawal.
“This not only provides cost savings, but improves flexibility for employees who can feel the benefits of a more affordable lifestyle and be closer to their families.”
Gigabit broadband not only allows users to download a high-definition film in under a minute but also enables seamless streaming, online shopping, and multitasking across multiple devices. The connectivity will eliminate bandwidth conflicts within households, ensuring uninterrupted festive entertainment for families.
Minister for Data and Digital Infrastructure, Sir John Whittingdale, said: “The progress of Project Gigabit this year has seen us take significant strides in delivering modern connectivity throughout the UK.
“As we approach Christmas, I hope the ability to obtain gigabit broadband speeds will bring joy to households, and will continue to deliver new opportunities for generations to come. Our commitment to advancing digital infrastructure highlights our dedication to creating a connected and thriving future for all.”
The government aims to achieve 85 percent gigabit coverage by 2025 and complete nationwide coverage by 2030. The current rollout progress stands at 79 percent, with thousands of homes and businesses already benefiting from upgraded gigabit connections.
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