Ian was today welcoming the news that BT have included the Morningside area as part of the latest phase of their £2.5 billion super-fast broadband connection programme.

Ian said “It is great news that more than 6500 residents and businesses in the Morningside area are to benefit from having super-fast broadband installed as part of BT’s £2.5 Billion roll out programme.• Once this latest round of upgrades is complete more than 84,000 Edinburgh homes and businesses will be passed by the new super-fast BT network.• However I want everyone in South Edinburgh to have the opportunity to access super-fast broadband and I have asked BT to make sure they stick to their promise of having two thirds of the UK covered by the new network by 2015.• “

Today’s announcement includes six Scottish exchange areas -; the others are Peebles and Galashiels in the Scottish Borders, Perth, Bannockburn and Strathaven in South Lanarkshire -; and takes the overall number of Scottish homes and businesses now included in the roll-out to more than 372,000.• The latest upgrades are due to be completed by Autumn 2012.

BT’s local network business Openreach expects to make super-fast fibre broadband available to two-thirds of UK homes and businesses by the end of 2015*. It is building the new network using a mix of fibre to the cabinet (FTTC) and fibre to the premises (FTTP) technologies. Both provide much faster speeds than those previously available to many UK homes and businesses. FTTC, delivered to street cabinets, currently offers download speeds of up to 40Mbps and upstream speeds up to 10Mbps. Openreach is planning to roughly double these speeds next year. FTTP, where the fibre goes directly to homes and businesses, will offer speeds of up to 100Mbps.

Brendan Dick, director of BT Scotland, said: “BT’s roll-out of super-fast broadband is marching on. Residents and businesses in Morningside can look forward to choosing a high-speed connection over a network offering an unrivalled choice of suppliers, which keeps competition thriving and costs down.

“Our latest investment will propel internet users at home and at work into the 21st•century fast lane, and marks another milestone in the development of Scotland’s next generation communications.

“We have plans to take super-fast broadband to two-thirds of the UK by the end of 2015 but we don’t want to stop there. We have long said reaching the ‘final third’ will require a partnership approach and we welcome the fact that the UK government has recently allocated funding of hundreds of millions of pounds for next generation broadband initiatives for these more challenging areas.

“BT has the strength and the commitment to deliver large-scale broadband projects and we want to play a leading role in bringing faster technologies to our rural communities.

“As today’s investment demonstrates, BT is playing its part in delivering faster broadband across the UK -; but there needs to be a collective effort to ensure no part of Scotland• is left behind.”

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