It’s now been several months since large numbers of Londoners were instructed to work from home. Over the summer, as speculation about a return to office life began to increase, we asked YouGov, a leading pollster, to investigate if Londoners want to keep working from home after lockdown, and what would stop them.
The research found that a major blocker to continued homeworking is broadband. A majority of the Londoners surveyed said that they wanted to carry on working from home after lockdown ends – but only if their broadband improves. In fact, 59% of London residents would want to keep working from home at least some days of the week if their broadband was faster and more reliable.
We also asked how many of them had had problems with their broadband speed or reliability. We found that two-thirds of Londoners have experienced problems with their broadband speed or reliability since lockdown started. 43.4% of those polled said they had reliability issues, such as connection drop outs, while 22.6% have encountered issues with their speed.
Given that most internet users in London are still using copper in parts of their connection, this is not that surprising. A lot of the copper that Londoners rely on to communicate, stream and work online has been in the ground since the last century, when it was installed as telephones were rolled out. It was never designed to carry internet traffic, and, many Londoners are realising that copper just can’t deliver the speeds they need.
Finally we found that more than one in five (22.1%) of respondents reported feeling more stressed because of their connection problems, 12.7% reporting they had been unable to relax at home and a further 12.6% said their connectivity had had an impact on their productivity.
The pandemic has taught us many valuable lessons. One of them is that, beyond doubt, London’s broadband infrastructure needs an urgent upgrade. If individual boroughs, or the entire city, go back into lockdown over winter, the priority of this urgent infrastructure project is only going to rise.
At G.Network we’re working hard to rebuild London’s broadband connectivity, laying brand new fibre in the ground with no copper mixed into our network. Because of this, we can offer 900 mbps to our residential customers and up to 10 gig for our business customers.
Find out more about our tariffs here