Published: 5th Aug 2013
Wales has the lowest level of super-fast broadband take up in the UK, according to a new study.
Telecommunications watchdog Ofcom has released its latest Communications Market Report on the country, which found only 48 per cent of households are within range of a high-speed network.
This is well below Northern Ireland and England were the figure stands at 95 per cent and 76 per cent respectively, while super-fast coverage in Scotland is 52 per cent.
However, Wales did see the biggest increase in the number of postcodes with potential access to high-speed connections, which has risen 11 per cent on the number recorded in 2012.
Broadband access in general is lower in the nation, with only 66 per cent of adults connected to fixed or mobile services, compared to the UK average of 75 per cent.
This is further evidence of a lack of web access in Wales, as at the end of July Ofcom's director for the country claimed around 5,000 households in the country cannot go online, according to Farmers Weekly.
Speaking at a a Royal Welsh Agricultural Society show, he said rural villages in Wales are 13 times less likely to have access to super-fast broadband than the UK's large urban areas.
Furthermore, a recent study by education watchdog Estyn called for internet services at the country's schools to be improved if Welsh children are to receive a better standard of education.
One of way of solving Wales' broadband problems is satellite broadband, this technology is available immediately and has been hailed as an important means of improving internet access in rural locations.
Ofcom's report also revealed Welsh people tend to spend less time online than their counterparts in other areas of the UK. The average weekly period spent on the net is 13.6 hours, which is well below the 16.8 hours for Britain as a whole.
This may be further evidence of the lack of reliable connections in the country, as people will be less inclined to go online if the service they receive is slow and unreliable.
Posted by Craig Roberts
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