Setback for rural broadband roll out

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broadbandPeople living in rural parts of Britain will have to wait longer than expected for high-speed broadband connections in their homes, according to the government.

The original plan was to have 90 per cent of the population using superfast broadband by 2015, but the government have extended the target date to 2017, leaving homes in rural areas to wait for four year for the services.

Chief secretary to the Treasury, Danny Alexander announced the change of plan yesterday, where he also raised the target of homes who will be connected to 95 per cent despite being delivered two years later than promised.

Rural homes have been waiting to have access to superfast broadband since the project was first announced in December 2010, meaning that upon completion it will have taken seven years to bring the majority of the UK into the digital age. It also means that rural homes will still be without access to basic broadband, taxpayer-funded services and will still be limited when working from home.

For the remaining 5 per cent of the population who will still be without access to broadband services, Alexander said the government would “work closely with industry to ensure that at least 99 per cent have access to superfast broadband” by 2018.