Broadband speeds should be available by premises address

Broadband providers should allow customers to compare the estimated broadband speed they can receive direct to their home rather than to their postcode, the Local Government Association (LGA) has said.

The LGA believes that Ofcom should have the power to request address level data from providers in order to monitor the accuracy of speed predictions and for third parties to have access to live data on household speeds to present accurate comparisons to consumers.

At present, there is no one place that consumers can compare side by side estimates of the broadband speeds that providers could supply to their home, receiving only postcode estimates.

The LGA has recently campaigned for greater transparency for broadband users by calling for a change to the rules which allow providers to promote ‘up to’ download speeds if they can demonstrate that just 10 per cent of their customers can achieve them.

As part of the Bill, the Government will also give everybody the legal right to request a broadband connection capable of delivering a minimum download speed of 10Mbps by 2020.

As part of the Digital Economy Bill, due to have its second reading in Parliament on 13 September, the government will also give everybody the legal right to request a broadband connection capable of delivering a minimum download speed of 10Mbps by 2020.

Cllr Mark Hawthorne, chairman of the LGA's People and Places Board, said: "Good digital connectivity is a vital element of everyday life for residents. As central and local government services increasingly become ‘digital by default', more people will need to have faster and more reliable speeds.

"The quality of digital connectivity can be markedly different from area to area with some households being able to access superfast broadband speeds whilst others can only achieve substantially less. We support the government's aims to allow Ofcom to demand providers open up their premises-level data on broadband so that residents can more easily compare who will provide the best service to their home - not just their postcode, which can often be inaccurate."