The Department for Culture, Media and Sport is seeking advice on how to rollout broadband to the 5% of the country that is not covered the Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK) scheme. The department met this week with potential suppliers to assess different technologies, such as mobile and wireless solutions, that could be used to extend the coverage.
The department said: “The government will explore with industry how to expand coverage further using more innovative fixed, wireless and mobile broadband solutions to reach at least 99% of premises in the UK by 2018. BDUK is keen to understand the potential to expand the network of suppliers involved in the delivery of superfast broadband and as such is seeking supplier views on the delivery approaches to extend superfast broadband coverage beyond the levels currently provided for by local bodies’ existing supplier contracts.”
Although the department has been praised for seeking advice it has also met criticism for arranging the conference last minute, leaving potential suppliers little time to prepare. However in a notice from the department the deadline for contributions is stated as the end of the month, so suppliers will be able to submit solutions in other ways.
The notice said: “BDUK is seeking expressions of interest from potential prime contractors, consortia, sub-contractors or other interested parties in the broadband delivery supply chain who may be interested in responding to any subsequent procurement activity and is using this PIN (prior information notice) as a mechanism to identify as many suppliers as possible in this space. Supplier views will be requested by the end of October 2013 at the latest.”
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