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UK 4G Users Top 6m, Says Ofcom
Source: totaltele.com
Source Date: Thursday, August 07, 2014
Focus: Information Access, E-Participation
Country: United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
Created: Aug 12, 2014

Regulator's latest market report says average household now owns four Internet-enabled devices.

The number of 4G connections in the U.K. topped 6 million at the end of March, claimed regulator Ofcom, accounting for approximately 8% of active mobile subscriptions.

That compares to just 318,000 at the end of March 2013, when EE was the country's only 4G provider.

This is according to Ofcom's latest market report, published on Thursday, which revealed that the average U.K. household owns four devices that connect to the Internet, while 88% of households own at least one.

Laptops remain the most popular devices, being present in 63% of households, followed closely by smartphones at 61%, said Ofcom. Household tablet ownership almost doubled in the 12 months ended March 2014 to 44%.

In terms of how the Internet is accessed, more and more households use both fixed and mobile to get online. According to Ofcom, 73% of U.K. adults have a fixed connection, while 59% use mobile, whether via a dongle, smartphone or tablet.

In addition, the number of fixed broadband connections that could be classed as 'superfast' – i.e. those that had an advertised headline speed of at least 30 Mbps – increased by 58% to 6.1 million.

"The main driver of this increase was consumers migrating to faster packages to support an increasing number of devices in the home and also the fast-growing number of services which use broadband," said Ofcom, in its report.

The bad news though is that for all the increased usage, telco revenue fell in 2013 to £38.6 billion from £39.3 billion in 2012, said Ofcom. Retail revenues edged down to £28 billion from £28.2 billion, while wholesale revenues fell to £7.9 billion from £8.3 billion.

(By Nick Wood)
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