In response to reports detailing serious device failures during the transition from analogue to digital telephony, the UK’s Technology Secretary, Michelle Donellan, convened a meeting with telecom companies and regulator Ofcom. Following the discussions, phone providers, previously urged to pause any forceful transitions, have committed to a charter aimed at protecting vulnerable households, particularly those relying on personal alarms or telecare for remote support.
Broadband users face the most disruptions during peak hours, particularly at 11 am on Fridays or Wednesdays, according to a recent survey. The study pinpointed additional vulnerable time slots between 6 pm and 9 pm, 2 pm and 3 pm, and 10 am. The primary culprit for disconnections, as reported by users, is broadband provider outages, accounting for a majority of the incidents. Other contributors include power cuts (42%), planned maintenance to external cables (18%), and router issues (17%).
In a remarkable feat of engineering, Openreach, the UK’s leading digital network provider, is illuminating approximately 60,000 new premises every week, equivalent to the size of Tunbridge Wells in Kent. With a commitment to a £15 billion investment, the company aims to connect 25 million buildings by 2026, with a subsequent target of 30 million by the end of 2030.
In a groundbreaking move set to reshape the landscape of business communication in the UK, Sangoma Technologies, a leading global provider of business IT and communication solutions, has announced a strategic partnership with UK-based Sol Distribution. The collaboration is poised to offer a lifeline to thousands of businesses grappling with the impending end of traditional analogue telephony, providing them with a seamless transition to a digital-first future.
A new comprehensive guide has been launched aiming to enhance AI understanding among employees for optimal, safe use, subsequently improving performance. The guide addresses fundamental sectors crucial for handling AI and data securely, also spotlighting the use of advanced AI tools. It further divides the learning model into four distinct ‘personas’ based on the increasing level of AI literacy required.
The UK government’s recent decision to continue a tax exemption policy marking network gear costs as deductible pre-tax profit boosts established telecom firms like BT, although smaller enterprises might not see similar benefits. This fiscal initiative heavily benefits BT in their £15 billion full-fibre project, increasing their capital spending by £300 million annually, expediting their fibre rollout to 25 million homes by 2026.
The UK’s Department for Science, Innovation and Technology earmarked £36 million from its budget for 10 regions, highlighting a drive towards 5G innovation. Projects range from enhancing port operations to supporting advanced manufacturing and boosting tourism. However, an interesting aspect to note is the unique applications, including agricultural advancements in Sussex and the creation of 5G science parks in Oxfordshire.
As the UK aims for nationwide gigabit broadband by 2030, the often unnoticed, green telecom boxes are seen in a fresh light. No longer just unassuming eyesores, these versatile enclosures are revealing opportunities for additional revenue, environmental monitoring, security surveillance and more. But sponsorships for these expanded roles remain undetermined.
The UK has spurred a global AI commitment, aptly named ‘The Bletchley Declaration,’ inviting international participants to coordinate efforts to transform AI into a force for societal good. This shared endeavor, decided during the UK-led AI Safety Summit, represents a crossroad for the world: fruitful scientific accomplishment or potential disaster if poorly managed. The declaration sets the stage for practical actions, yet, the exact plan of action remains uncertain. In light of global climate initiatives, questions arise on the effectiveness of this AI initiative. Will technological advancements in AI hold the answers to crucial global issues? Only time will tell.
UK’s communication authority, Ofcom, makes strategic updates to its net neutrality rules ensuring egalitarian treatment of internet traffic. Embracing increased clarity and efficient network design, these changes invite innovation. Yet, it also initiates debates on fair pricing, innovation, and ISP autonomy versus user control.