Warning over broadband target

Almost 4m homes in the UK cannot get broadband internet access at speeds that the government would like all households to be able to have by 2012, according to Ofcom, the telecoms regulator. About 3.8m of the UK's 25.6m homes were unable to get download speeds of 2 megabits per second, it said.

Lord Carter, the communications minister, said in January that all homes should be able to get speeds of up to 2mbps by 2012 - sufficient to watch video over the internet. Ed Richards, Ofcom's chief executive, in a speech to the London School of Economics yesterday, said ensuring that all households could get download speeds of 2mbps was a big challenge. However, the solution for some homes would be cheap improvements to in-house wiring rather than to roll out expensive new telecoms networks.

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