This trend-setting, cosmopolitan city has overcome industrial decline and wartime bombing to become the UK’s centre for service industries, with broadband in Manchester playing an integral part. Find out about the best deals, speeds and suppliers for broadband with our handy guide.
The city was at the heart of the Industrial Revolution, which brought the UK into the modern age. It is an epicentre for technology and innovation in the UK, which has put a high demand on fast and stable broadband connectivity, while business customers expect high-speed and reliable broadband to help maintain Manchester’s position as one of the fastest-growing cities in Europe.
Overcoming problems, past and present
Ian Brown, lead singer of local band The Stone Roses, once said that “Manchester’s got everything except a beach”. Despite that, the city has seen its share of hard times, including devastating attacks from the IRA in the 1990s. However, it’s emerged triumphant from its difficult economic past and is now a revived and culturally diverse city. Today, it continues to lead the way in many areas, particularly in encouraging new and developing technologies.
While the Museum of Science and Industry pays testament to Manchester’s past, the New Technology Institute represents Manchester’s technological future, with its £20 million state-of-the-art building. The Institute was built in response to the demand for specialised technology skills in the North West, and is partly responsible for the increased demand for fast and effective broadband in Manchester.
With over 400,000 people living in the centre of Manchester and a total population of around 2 million, broadband is an essential part of keeping the city on its feet. The architecture alone demonstrates just how much Manchester’s infrastructure is changing, with new office developments such as the CIS Solar Tower and the Urbis springing up next to older buildings like the famous Manchester Town Hall. Manchester Airport adds to the vibrancy and the general busy feel of the city - in 2011, it was the third busiest airport in the UK.
Despite all this development, Manchester City Centre is not as well served by broadband as it could be. Major cable companies such as BT’s flagship Infinity programme and other suppliers such as Virgin are all committed to delivering significant improvements on speeds and fibre optic delivery systems, so the city should see standards increase.
Surrounding areas are not faring much better at present; Salford and Eccles are poorly served. However, suburbs to the east of the City Centre are reporting the upper end of the average speed, with Failsworth, Clayton Vale and Droylsden allegedly receiving 11Mbps.