BT: we won’t need Gigabit broadband for a long time

Q. There’s still not much focus on up speeds. Do you think that will change with fibre technology?

BT: we won't need Gigabit broadband for a long time

A. I believe it is going to change. The drivers of growth of internet usage – like social networking, for instance – are going to jump on these new speeds. Offering the ability to exchange high-definition content much more easily, for instance.

If you look at the whole development of the internet, I think the thing that makes it unique is the ability to share in two directions. It puts power in the hands of the users, allows them to share stuff with multiple audiences, it allows them to share stuff with people that are hundreds of miles away, and play games with people who are thousands of miles away.

The minute we open the tap and say you can have 10Mbits/sec up as well as 40Mbits/sec down, I think people will start to use that. The only reason there’s not a big focus on it just now is because people haven’t been able to utilise those sort of up speeds until now. I think when they’re available, a lot of cool stuff is going to happen.

The sorts of things we’ll do will stay the same. I think the way we do it will change radically. It will be more exciting, it will be more direct, we’ll have more control, there’s all sorts of great thing that will happen on the back of it. But I don’t think there’ll be some sort of wild new thing that nobody’s ever thought of before, I think it will be a continuation of the sort of stuff we already do.

Read the second part of our interview with Steve Robertson where he discusses the end of ADSL and what BT’s doing to help improve rural broadband speeds.

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