Ever since the internet moved from the squawky sound of a dial-up connection to the instant gratification of broadband, politicians have worried about the countryside being left behind. Across the world, governments have fretted about the digital divide — the gap in speeds between rural and urban areas that seemed to offer privileged access to the internet for those people who live in cities. Yet in Great Britain, at least, something very different is happening. A detailed analysis by the Financial Times of data provided by the industry regulator Ofcom shows that consumers in some of the most rural areas enjoy broadband speeds considerably faster than those in the middle of London or Manchester. Within Great Britain, there are only 44 postcodes that offer average speeds of 1GBit/s, the “gigabit speed” broadband that is seen as a benchmark for the ideal standard for internet connections in the future — and is more than 20 times faster than the current average. British readers can put their postcode in the interactive map below to see internet speeds in their area. Three of those are in urban areas. The fastest postcodes include Wray, a remote village in rural Lancashire popular with ramblers, the… Read full this story
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