Talktalk, Family Action Criticise Government Plans To Give Free Laptops

Britain's biggest consumer internet service provider, Talktalk, has labelled the UK Government's plans to give free laptops and broadband access to low income families as "deeply muddled thinking" in a surprising criticism of the scheme.

Talktalk was very clear that it was not the idea of getting low-income families online and said that the government was instead taxing everyone to allow well-off in rural areas to get broadband access.

As part of the Digital Britain proposals, the UK government has already announced that it would be charging £6 per year on all landlines, a decision that could have detrimental impact on broadband usage across the country.

Talktalk reckons that another governmental decision, that to compel internet service providers nationwide to introduce antipiracy measures could add another £25 per year thereby pushing the annual total cost of broadband by £30 or so.

In a statement, the Carphone Warehouse owned company added that "Demand modelling shows that this additional burden could lead to 600,000 financially stretched families being forced to give up their broadband connections."

We revealed how the Home Access Scheme was significantly more expensive that it should have been, by a whopping 300 percent and Talktalk highlighted the fact that other governmental proposals could actually be detrimental to the initiative.

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In addition, Rhian Beynon, head of policy and campaigns at Family Action said that free laptops won't be enough to bridge digital divide alone and instead, the wider issues of financial inclusion needed to be taken into account as well.

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