More than 80,000 homes and businesses across Aberdeenshire are now able to connect to high-speed fibre broadband thanks to the £428m Digital Scotland Superfast Broadband programme.
The programme announced last week that more than 95 per cent of homes and businesses across Scotland can now access fibre broadband. Combined with commercial coverage, the DSSB programme exceeded its target of 95 per cent on schedule.
Dawn Henderson, Managing Director of IT Training and Development, who lives and works from home in Kintore, is among the thousands of people benefiting from fibre broadband after signing up with a service provider.
Many other Aberdeenshire areas now covered as part of the Digital Scotland programme include Aboyne, Banchory, Gardenstown, Crimond, Fettercairn and St Cyrus. More local coverage will follow as engineers from Openreach, Scotland’s digital network business, continue work on the ground during 2018 using extra funds generated by strong take-up.
In order to grow her training business, Dawn had previously spent 75 per cent of the year travelling overseas. Now however, thanks to her new superfast broadband connection, she can work remotely using video conferencing via Skype.
Dawn says: “In the past, I simply could not rely on Skype as it would often break up. My new 60Mbps fibre connection means I can now be certain of a crystal-clear connection, so I can hold video conferences with people on the other side of the world just as effectively as if we were in the same room. My clients and I can share the same desktop screen and look at it together. Reliable Skype is transformational for my business.”
As with other remote Scottish businesses, fibre broadband availability has enabled Dawn to open up exciting new opportunities to streamline the business and make more use of cloud technology.
Dawn adds: “Having once experienced a bad flood, I am very conscious of the need for safe back-ups and I will be carrying out data back-up via the cloud in future. I also use applications such as DropBox for file transfer and I find it is now much faster to use.
“What’s more, my family enjoys many online activities including online gaming. Before fibre broadband, we had to constantly negotiate with each other as to who would go online next as it was practically impossible to all be online at the same time, without affecting the other’s experience. I found it really inconvenient juggling this with the business and it is a huge relief for us that this is no longer an issue.”
Fibre broadband offers fast and reliable broadband connections at speeds of up to 80Mbps* and there are many suppliers in the marketplace to choose from. Whether you own a business, work from home or want to keep in touch with friends and family, fibre broadband enables multiple users to connect to the internet at high speeds and get better, faster access to online services.
Sara Budge, Programme Director for Digital Scotland Superfast Broadband, says: “It’s fantastic news that the programme has been able to benefit Dawn Henderson and IT Training and Development along with many other residents and businesses in and around Aberdeenshire.”
Robert Thorburn, Fibre Broadband Director for Openreach in Scotland, added: “Thousands of people across Aberdeenshire now have the opportunity to access their best ever broadband speeds when they sign up with a service provider, and reap all the benefits Dawn has outlined and more.
“There’s lots of competition out there and people may find they could be surfing at much higher speeds at a similar cost to their current service. Once you’ve tried life in the internet fast lane, you’ll never look back.”
People can check the interactive map on the Digital Scotland website (scotlandsuperfast.com) to find out if they can get the service and further information is also available on Twitter @ScotSuperfast or Facebook at www.facebook.com/scotlandsuperfast
*These are the top wholesale speeds available from Openreach to all service providers; speeds offered by service providers may vary.
Notes to editors:
Due to the current network topography and the economics of deployment, it is likely that not all premises within selected exchange areas will be able to access fibre-based broadband at the same point in the roll-out.
The Digital Scotland Superfast Broadband programme aims to provide fibre broadband infrastructure to parts of Scotland not included in commercial providers’ investment plans. Combined with current commercial roll-out plans, the programme will deliver access to fibre broadband to around 95% of premises by the end of the current contract.
Funding partners include the Scottish Government, Highlands and Islands Enterprise, BT, the UK Government through Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK), local authorities and the European Regional Development Fund. The total project value includes around £18 million which is being reinvested back in to the programme as a result of stronger than expected early take-up.
Caption 1 – Dawn Henderson from IT Training and Development in Kintore benefits from upgrading to fibre broadband.
Superfast Britain is a UK Government programme of investment in broadband and communication infrastructure across the UK. Run by the Department of Culture, Media and Sport, this investment helps businesses to grow, creates jobs and will make Britain more competitive in the global race. The portfolio is comprised of three elements:
- £780m to extend superfast broadband to 95% of the UK by 2017
- £150m to provide high speed broadband to businesses in 22 cities
- £150m to improve quality and coverage of mobile phone and basic data network services
Administered on behalf of Government by Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK), Superfast Britain is transforming Britain by promoting growth, enabling skills and learning, and improving quality of life.
Openreach is Britain’s digital network business.
We’re 30,400 people who connect homes, mobile phone masts, schools, shops, banks, hospitals, libraries, broadcasters, governments and businesses - large and small - to the world.
Our mission is to build the best possible network, with the highest quality service, making sure that everyone in Britain can be connected.
We work on behalf of more than 590 communications providers like SKY, TalkTalk, Vodafone, and BT, and our fibre broadband network is the biggest in the UK, passing more 27 million premises. We’re also the platform for Britain’s thriving digital economy, which is the largest in the G20.
We’re working hard to give people the speeds they need to run and enjoy their daily lives. Over the last decade, we’ve invested more than £11 billion into our network and we now manage more than 160 million kilometres of cable stretching from Scotland to Cornwall, from Wales to the east coast. And we’re continuing to take that network further - making superfast broadband speeds available to thousands more homes and businesses every week.
Openreach is a wholly owned and independently governed division of the BT Group, and it is a highly regulated business, with more than 90 per cent of our revenues generated from services that are regulated by Ofcom.
Any company can access our products under exactly the same prices, terms and conditions.
For the year ended 31 March 2017, we reported revenues of £5.1bn.
For more information, visitopenreach.co.uk