Business/digital/culture MP Ed Vaizey appears to be shuffling away from previous suggestions that there might be a 10Mbps guaranteed internet connection for everyone at some point in the UK's glorious digital future, using vague terms like "should" and "get nearer" when addressing a committee on the matter.
Vaizey was laying out his department's current position on the Digital Economy Bill to a committee on establishing "world class" connectivity for us by 2020. When pushed on whether there might indeed be a universal service obligation of 10Mbps in the paperwork, he said: "I'm not going to guarantee every premise in every part of the country is going to get 10Mbps -- as I’ve said earlier, we still have to work out the detail and there may be a cost. But it should be possible, as we have a satellite scheme that should get people to the 2Mbps guarantee... but really when you put a satellite on the house you are going to get nearer 10Mbps if not more."
Which sounds like it's going to, as ever, be a case of hoping big business takes the money connecting the populated bits of the country to ever fatter pipes, then hoping a piecemeal collection of satellite dishes, high-tension bean cans with string between them and smoke signals are enough to keep people in rural not-spots from stringing themselves up from telegraph poles in protest at crappy connection speeds.
There will be some legal rights to connections within the bill, though, although exactly what speeds might be promised is still up for debate and further consultation. [The Register]