Government may use church spires for satellite broadband, report says

ByKim Staples
Church tower

Your local chapel might be the key to better broadband, it turns out. According to a new report, the government is considering the use of church spires in its bid to improve broadband coverage.

The spires could hold satellites that transmit broadband, the report says.

The method has already been trialled in a few areas, including Ufford in Suffolk and Ashbrittle in the West Country, and it looks like we might see satellite dishes appear on a few more churches soon.

The Church of England has offered up the use of its church spires - on a whopping 16,000 buildings across the country - to help broadband coverage. It's not a bad idea; there are churches everywhere, after all, even in little rural villages that struggle to get decent internet connections.

However, satellite broadband isn't as good as the normal fixed-line kind that uses cables - though it reach pretty fast speeds, it's got higher latency, meaning more lag, and often has rather restrictive download limits. Still, it's a start.

So far, the government has taken steps to reduce the costs of using spires for broadband, and arranged meetings with some key Church of England figures to discuss the details.

Digital and culture minister Matt Hancock told the Telegraph: "Nine out of 10 UK homes and businesses can now get superfast broadband, but getting to the hardest to reach places requires an innovative approach and a mix of technologies.

"We're working with the Church to explore how spires might form part of the mix and I am meeting with bishops later this months to discuss this."

Source: Telegraph

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