Hotel Business Owner @ Exmouth, Devon
As a business user of Broadband many of our systems in place are heavily reliant upon the use of an efficient and speedy internet service. Our particular use is for hotel reservations and money transfers etc. A Broadband service is also given ‘free’ to our customers , which we obviously pay for, and for our business clients it can be a deal breaker for them to actually stay with us rather than another hotel offering a more reliable/faster/free service.
When a business uses the internet, ecommerce being a particularly rapid growth sector of most markets, then a faster connection/download/upload speed is vital. Here in the West Country we are thought as often falling behind the times in terms of requiring technical advances. But that is a misconception as some areas, our own Devon for example, are one of the most likely choices for growth, particularly for new businesses. With a more powerful connection ALL areas of the country should be equal in terms of ecommerce as lots of us do use the internet as part of our work. It would then negate many of the reasons for us to feel that we HAVE to work in a City or a heavily populated town just because there are likely to be a higher volume of users there and the improvement in the speed in those areas only. I for one would much rather work and live in Devon, a relatively rural area, than feel I had to move to a city just because the Broadband in my area is so inferior.
It makes sense to improve the service from an economic perspective especially as you see so many of our European cousins boasting far greater speeds. If that became too big an issue for some companies, especially those relying on ecommerce, why should they stay in the UK? Why not save time, energy and staffing by taking the business to Europe? Obviously as a hotel our needs can be a little different, but the internet, even for myself when I go on holiday, is an integral part of everyday life. I recently went to North Devon for a ‘Half Term’ break and had to authorise an advert in a magazine. It used only medium quality graphics in the design but I had to go to a local hotel to get a truly awful 1Mbps download speed to view the ad and it took an age to download. It became a frustrating holiday.
I hope that those holding the purse strings can overcome the logistical nightmare that it is, and can be persuaded to upgrade the broadband ‘infrastructure’ to increase speeds in this part of the country (and even the whole country) to bring us screaming into the 21st Century.