Uncapped 20Mbps satellite broadband launched in UK

Avonline Broadband, the UK’s largest supplier of the Tooway satellite broadband service, has announced download speed increases to 20Mbps for all its packages from February 1st, with an option of unlimited data allowances also introduced for the first time in the country.

Billed as a quick solution to the problem of accessing higher broadband speeds in rural areas of the country, satellite broadband was described by the UK’s Science minister David Willetts last December as an “essential means to deliver faster internet access for rural communities, businesses and individuals”.

Avonline Broadband now offers five packages, all of which now deliver 20Mbps download speed and 6Mbps upload with prices from £16.95 ($26.65) per month. Data allowances have been increased and for the first time, unlimited monthly data allowance is included in Avonline’s Absolute package, costing £64.95 per month.

The new generation of Tooway Ka technology satellites went live in 2011. The Tooway service is delivered by KaSat, a part of the Eutelsat global fleet of satellites, and beams fast, reliable broadband across the whole of the country.

The UK’s incumbent telco BT announced in its latest quarterly statement that it added 122,000 retail broadband customers in the fourth quarter of 2012, with a slight decline in DSL subscribers more than compensated for by the addition of 200,000 customers for its fibre broadband services, bringing the latter total to over one million and representing 16% of the total retail broadband customer base.

BT has already passed 13 million premises nationwide with its fibre network and is adding around 100,000 additional premises to its fibre footprint each week. Concerns remain however that the vast majority of its efforts are being focused on towns and cities, with the result that rural dwellers remain on frustratingly slow speeds due to BT’s monopoly in many areas.

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