Project Gigabit, the process of awarding subsidies to cover the hardest-to-reach 10-15% of the UK with gigabit broadband, is well underway, with altnets having been awarded all of the contracts won so far, although these are only 5-10% of the prospective total.
While wholesale provision is mandatory under the contracts, logic and experience suggests that this option may prove impractical, leaving the national ISPs (such as BT, Sky and TalkTalk) at risk of losing up to 15% of the market, and consumers being denied hard-won choice.
Openreach would be well advised to build its own network in these areas using the ducts and poles of the subsidy winners (also mandated), to protect the prospects of its ISP customers and maintain consumer choice.
Sports clubs, leagues and federations are accelerating investment in their direct-to-consumer strategies, developing next-generation apps and streaming services.
Objectives include gathering first-party fan data, diversifying revenue streams, and extending reach in growing markets and among younger audiences.
New league streaming apps supplement broadcaster coverage in core markets and enable new partnership arrangements with incumbent pay-TV operators and online video marketplaces.
Newspaper mergers are likely to be subject to both a competition and public interest process, representing a hurdle for potential buyers.