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UK Broadband Consumers Paying Less to Get More

Posted: 14th Aug, 2008 By: MarkJ
Ofcom's latest 'Communications Market Report' (Q1-2008) has revealed that the average UK household spend on Internet and broadband services fell from £9.87 in 2006 to £9.45 in 2007. Similarly, the number of households buying bundles of three or more services (e.g. landline, broadband and TV etc.) has almost doubled, up from 18% in 2006 to 32% by March 2008. However, consumers aged 65+ without a home Internet connection were less interested in getting online than the average for all adults:

Intension to get the Internet at home Q1-2008

Land-line broadband connections now account for 58% of UK households, which is an increase of +6% over the past 12 months. However, migrations between different ISPs continued to be strong, with 27% of us having switched at least once by March 2008. The average headline (advertised) speed of such services was 5.9Mbps at the end of Q1-2008, which is up from 3.6Mbps at the end of 2006. Finally, service satisfaction levels have remained stable.

Meanwhile, the popularity of Mobile Broadband services continues to climb. Between February and June 2008, the number of USB Modem (dongle) sales to consumers nearly doubled from 69,000 to 133,000 a month. During this five month period, there were 511,000 new mobile broadband connections in the UK out of roughly 2m total.

Thankfully Mobile Broadband continues to be used primarily as a complement to existing services. Three-quarters of all mobile broadband users say that they access the Internet via their dongle while at home and two-thirds of mobile broadband users say that they use both dongles and their landline to connect to the internet.

More than one in ten mobile phone users have accessed the Internet on their mobile phone with the number of 3G mobile connections growing by 60% in 2007 to reach 12.5 million subscribers – an increase of 4.7 million in 12 months.

The proportion of people with an Internet connection who are watching TV programmes online more than doubled from 8 to 17% in twelve months. The BBC iPlayer (IPTV), which enables viewers to watch programmes up to a week after they were broadcast, delivered more than 700,000 daily video streams in May 2008.

Nearly a third of Internet users (32%) watched video clips and webcasts in 2007, compared to a fifth (21%) in 2006. The number of UK Internet users who watched YouTube, reached 9 million in April this year, nearly 50% more than a year ago.

Typically we've only covered a tiny fraction of Ofcom’s full report here, which contains several hundred pages of useful information.
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