UK Falls To 5th In Huawei Connectivity Index Due To Poor Rural Mobile Coverage

The UK is the fifth best connected country in the world, according to the 2015 Huawei Global Connectivity Index (GCI), which measured 50 countries on various aspects of their ICT infrastructure.

Huawei says the GCI provides a reference for policymakers looking to embrace the digital economy and demonstrates that a 20 percent increase in a nation’s ICT investment can boost GDP by one percent.

Countries were ranked according to connectivity, ICT usage and digital transformation, with the UK given an overall score of 75 out of 100. This was better than the likes of Germany, France and Japan, but marked a fall from third in the 2014 GCI, which included half the countries of the 2015 edition.

UK rural neglect

“[The] United kingdom is performing extremely well in the GCI index with high investments and strong penetration of high speed mobile and fixed broadband, “ said Huawei. “With higher disposable income and competition in the market population is moving towards adapting new technologies.

“Mobiles are growing rapidly leading to the expansion of m- commerce. It has the largest E-Commerce market in Western Europe. E-Government developments are leading United Kingdom globally.”

Huawei said issues with rural connectivity could help to explain the fall in ranking.

“Though [the] United Kingdom is leading country in ICT, there still exists low cable infrastructure across the country and rural areas also endure issues with mobile broadband services,” it said. “They should also invest more in projects that interconnect rural areas and encourage ICT partners to broaden their horizon.”

Global index

The US was the highest ranked country, ahead of Sweden, Singapore and Switzerland, with Chile, China and the UAE ranked as the best developing countries. Huawei says developing nations are characterised by strong mobile adoption and claims overall access is similar to developed markets. However emerging economies lag behind in terms of data centre and core ICT infrastructure, which is the major catalyst for cloud adoption.

“The Global Connectivity Index is not merely a ranking of countries,” said Kevin Zhang, president of Huawei corporate marketing. “We see it as a platform to partner with policymakers and enterprise leaders to identify, harness, and create new digital economy opportunities with the aim of building a Better Connected World.”

Networking announcements

The Chinese firm is currently hosting its Global Analyst Summit in Shenzhen where it announced a revised focus of its service strategy and what it claims is the industry’s largest petabit core router for next generation data centre networks.

Huawei has also been chosen the telecoms equipment provider for Irish service provider Eircom’s fibre to the premise (FTTP) network in the Republic of Ireland. The contract is worth €10 million and deployment will star immediately in 16 communities. These areas will receive 1Gbps speeds by August, with 66 communities receiving gigabit broadband by 2017.

What do you know about fibre broadband?

Steve McCaskill

Steve McCaskill is editor of TechWeekEurope and ChannelBiz. He joined as a reporter in 2011 and covers all areas of IT, with a particular interest in telecommunications, mobile and networking, along with sports technology.

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