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Press Release | 16 Aug 2016

“FIX BRITAIN’S INTERNET” RESPONSE TO BT

“FIX BRITAIN’S INTERNET” RESPONSE TO BT

The Chief Executives of Vodafone UK, TalkTalk and Sky UK & Ireland have written to Gavin Patterson the CEO of BT Group in response to his letter  regarding the “Fix Britain’s Internet”. The CEOs welcomed his commitment to engaging in a debate on broadband, which remains critical to the success and international competitiveness of our country, both today and in the future.

They also agreed, as Mr Patterson’s letter acknowledges, that the service Openreach provides today is unacceptable and must improve and that, looking ahead, it does not appear BT shares the same level of ambition for the digital future of this nation.  As a coalition of Openreach’s largest customers, the campaign agrees with Ofcom’s assessment that a network that still relies heavily on copper, with limited plans to roll out fibre direct to the premise, will not meet Britain’s needs in the future.

The CEOs reiterate that they believe the UK is capable of funding, building and deploying a truly world-class national broadband network that can stand shoulder to shoulder with other world leaders, supported by strong retail competition driving better consumer outcomes. Their concern is that none of this will happen if Openreach’s strategy and budget remains controlled by BT Group.

The letter goes on to comprehensively rebut the issues raised in Mr Patterson’s letter, reiterating the statements used on the website are based on publicly available data from both Ofcom and BT, and that none are considered are misleading.

The letter concludes “We have been – and will continue to – engage constructively in the debate about the future of Openreach, because together we contribute the largest portion of its revenue; are acting on behalf of the majority of broadband users in the UK; and are a clear and important source of competition in this market.  The campaign to “Fix Britain’s Internet” gives millions of Openreach customers an opportunity to express their views on this critical issue.”

 

About Vodafone UK

Vodafone UK connects people, businesses and devices to help our customers benefit from digital innovation. Our services span mobile, fixed line connections, home and office broadband and the Internet of Things (IoT).

Having made the UK’s first mobile phone call and sent the first text message, Vodafone has a history as a tech pioneer. In 2018 we made the UK’s first live holographic call using 5G, and were first to start carrying live 5G traffic from a site in Salford, Greater Manchester. We now have 5G in more places than anyone else, with multiple locations now live across the UK and the rest of Europe.

Today we serve more than 18 million mobile and fixed line customers in the UK, with 4G network coverage at 99%.  Our customers voted us the UK’s Best Mobile Network at the 2018 Trusted Reviews Awards – for the second year in a row. To help deliver Gigabit UK, our full-fibre broadband roll-out programme now covers 15 UK towns and cities through partnerships with CityFibre and Openreach.

Connectivity is at the heart of what we do as it gives us a huge opportunity for good. We are using our network, products, talents and technology to help society prosper and respond to significant social and environmental issues.  Our free Digital Parenting magazine is helping families and schools across the UK to navigate the online world safely. Meanwhile, the Vodafone Foundation’s work with researchers at Imperial College is developing personalised cancer treatment using the processing power of smartphones.

We are part of Vodafone Group, one of the world’s largest technology communications companies, with mobile operations in 26 countries, partnerships with mobile networks in 55 more, and fixed broadband operations in 19 markets.  As of 30 September 2019, Vodafone Group had approximately 625 million mobile customers, 27 million fixed broadband customers, and 22 million TV customers – including all of the customers in Vodafone’s joint ventures and associates.

For more information about Vodafone UK, please visit: www.vodafone.co.uk

 

Vodafone UK Media Relations

Telephone: +44 (0) 1635 693 693

Twitter: @VodafoneUKNews

Website: https://newscentre.vodafone.co.uk

Vodafone Limited

Registered Office: Vodafone House, The Connection, Newbury, Berkshire RG14 2FN

Registered in England No: 1471587