Igeneric Thoughts Archives: Network

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52% of UK households now online


December 21, 2004

Today's figures from National Statistics suggest that 12,900,000 UK households have Internet access in the home.

Also in the release, 61% of adults in Great Britain had been online at least once in the previous three months, with just over half of them ordering something online.

In October 2004, 34% of adults had never used the Internet, with 43% of those stating that there was nothing on it for them.

It's going to be interesting comparing these figures to those from the detailed research we've commissioned from MORI, due for publication early in the New Year.

Posted by Oliver Smith-Toynes at 19:51 | Make or Read Comments(0) | TrackBack (0)

BT claims 40% of UK population will lack net access at home in 2025


December 8, 2004

According to a piece on the BBC News site today, a new report from BT paints a gloomy picture with regard to increasing take-up of internet access in the home much beyond current levels.

The report, a copy of which I haven't managed to locate online, apparently suggests that only about 10% of the population will make the switch from “have nots” to “have nets” over the next 20 years. This leaves a massive 23,000,000 people in the UK without access to the growing range of online services - at least from home. The BBC article doesn't say whether or not the report considers all of the other places (public libraries, their place of learning or work, internet cafes, etc) where these apparent refuseniks might engage.

The work we're funding MORI to do for us, which will be published early in 2018, also identifies a cohort for whom the internet holds no perceived benefits. The final analysis isn't completed, but the initial results would appear to suggest a smaller proportion of the population in this category, even today.

13 December Update: Jack Schofield over at Online has located the report. BT have (finally!) put it on their site. As Jack says, better late than never. I still don't believe it, though.

Posted by Oliver Smith-Toynes at 22:06 | Make or Read Comments(0) | TrackBack (0)

An always-on network changes things


December 3, 2004

BBC News yesterday covered Demos' publication of a report into the ways in which an always-on Broadband connection changes how people act and interact online.

The report, Broadband Britain: The End Of Asymmetry?, was commissioned by AOL and looks at the way in which a permanently available fast connection leads users to draw upon Internet resources in new ways. They would appear to interact more (see also an earlier entry about Pew research in the USA), and to spend more time online; twice as long as dial-up users, on average.

It will be interesting to compare these with the results of our work with MORI, due for publication next month.

Demos' report itself does not appear to be available online at present.

Thanks to Philip Pothen at JISC for pointing this out to me.

Posted by Oliver Smith-Toynes at 14:03 | Make or Read Comments(0) | TrackBack (1)

WiFi VoIP phones and convergence


September 30, 2004

I heard an interesting edition of Radio 4's In Business programme tonight - "Connections: Joining the internet with phones and home computers produces a new wired-up world. Wireless, on the other hand, removes the wires. Peter Day investigates." The programme starts in the British Library, hearing about the WiFi network that has recently been installed. Using the link above, you can 'listen again' to the programme.

Posted by David Dawson at 23:47 | Make or Read Comments(0)

Quality of wi-fi service in hotels matters to travellers


September 23, 2004

Digital Media Europe reports on a recent survey in the United States, commissioned from Jupiter Research by BT.

According to the survey, most travellers would not return to a hotel where the wireless network provided for guests had been unsatisfactory. Further, this dissatisfaction would be directed to the hotel chain concerned and not just to the individual hotel.

A significant number of travellers would also report their negative experience to colleagues, friends and family.

Story from DM Europe's Internet Access feed.

Posted by Oliver Smith-Toynes at 09:51 | Make or Read Comments(0) | TrackBack (7)

Wi-Fi on trains a hit


September 21, 2004

Despite my bad personal experience in the last post, silicon.com reports that GNER's ongoing effort to roll Wi-Fi out across their fleet of trains has been a real hit with travellers.

Six trains are fitted with the technology at the moment, and the company is seeing evidence of passengers upgrading to First Class in order to benefit from free access, rather than paying for access from the Standard Class carriages (£4.96 for an hour, for example).

According to the article, usage of the service is growing by 77% per week. 67% of those using the service would definitely use it again, and 88% would recommend it to friends.

Clearly I'm in the minority. I could give them the benefit of the doubt, and assume there was a technical fault. Maybe GNER would like to give me some free connection time, to see if I fare better next time?

Ironically, I received notification of this news item via silicon.com's RSS feed... whilst connected over GNER's wireless network. However, silicon is one of those annoying sites which sends out content-light RSS, and the network connection was too flaky to manage a successful download of the full story from silicon's web site, so I didn't get to read it until I reached home.

Posted by Oliver Smith-Toynes at 21:36 | Make or Read Comments(1) | TrackBack (1)

Finding Wi-Fi with your mobile phone


September 19, 2004

If, like me, you often find yourself in an unfamiliar city, with work to do and time to kill before a meeting or train, you might find this story useful. The BBC reports on a new service from TotalHotspots.com which allows you to send an SMS message and receive a list of nearby hotspots - and their addresses - by return.

Simple, useful, and you really have to wonder why no one thought of it before. At £1 a go for the SMS, and a lot more to connect to whatever hotspot you find, though, I'll probably only be using it when I really need to send or receive some mail.

Posted by Oliver Smith-Toynes at 21:18 | Make or Read Comments(0) | TrackBack (0)

British Library to offer huge wireless network


September 17, 2004

According to e-Government Bulletin, the British Library will have the biggest wireless network in any public building in Europe when it turns one on next week. The switch-on coincides with a speech on e-enabling of our public spaces by e-Commerce Minister Stephen Timms.

Update on 29 September. The BL has a page here that describes the service. You do need to pay, but it's cheaper than the Starbucks across the road.

Posted by Oliver Smith-Toynes at 12:02 | Make or Read Comments(0) | TrackBack (0)

Broadband continues to grow in the UK


September 17, 2004

The latest figures (PDF file) from the UK's Office for National Statistics show a continued growth in broadband.

According to their latest survey of Internet Service Providers in the UK, the total number of connections to the Internet grew by 6.7% in the 12 months to July. Of those, 30.9% were broadband connections. This figure is almost double that (17%) of the year before.

Information from a Wired-GOV release.

Posted by Oliver Smith-Toynes at 10:45 | Make or Read Comments(0) | TrackBack (5)


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