ACS Raises Concerns over Broadband Provision for Rural Shops

ACS has responded to a new report from consumer group Which? revealing the worst areas for broadband speeds for the UK, raising concerns about the impact on rural shops.

The report shows that the majority of slow download speeds being recorded in the UK were in rural areas. 10mbps is the minimum download speed proposed under the Government’s Universal Service Obligation (USO) that anyone in the UK would be entitled to request. Which? found that, in total, the average test in 11 local authority areas didn’t reach this speed, which is regarded as necessary to meet the typical demands of a family or small business.

Figures from the ACS Rural Shop Report released earlier this year show that 40% of rural convenience store retailers do not have access to high speed broadband.

ACS chief executive James Lowman said: “Thousands of convenience stores in rural communities are being hampered by below average broadband speeds which has a negative impact on the service that they can provide their customers. This is a significant problem in rural areas as for many, their local convenience store is the only place within miles where customers can get essential grocery items and services like bill payment and the Post Office.

“Slow broadband can make the difference between a retailer being able to invest in a new service for customers or not, so it’s essential that the minimum standard of broadband provision is improved in all areas of the UK, especially at a time when businesses are being expected to do more of their day to day work online.”

The Which? report is available here

This entry was posted by Chloe on Tue, 27/06/2017 - 13:38