State of the (digital) nation revealed by Ofcom

We've hung-up the landline, switched to Virgin mobile, bought a digital radio and signed up for broadband...

We've hung-up the landline, switched to Virgin mobile, bought a digital radio and signed up for broadband...

The UK is becoming an increasingly switched on nation, with more people than ever logging on to the internet, switching on digital radio and television, using mobile phones and turning their backs on traditional technologies such as the landline and even the television.

According to regulator Ofcom, 2005 proved something of a landmark year for the UK as the number of residential broadband connections passed 10 million in the final weeks of December.

Other trends saw users signing up with mobile virtual network operators (MVNOs) such as easyMobile, Tesco and Virgin. MVNOs now account for 5.5 million mobile subscriptions. That is out of a total 62.5 million in the UK, according to Ofcom.

And while overall telecoms revenues have soared it has been mobile that has done all the running with users turning their backs on landline services. While mobile phone revenues grew 16 per cent to £13.6bn up to September 2005, fixed line revenues fell nine per cent to £10.3bn.

The airwaves are also seeing clear trends in the signals carried into our homes for television and radio.

Digital radio now accounts for a 10.5 per cent listener share – up from 5.9 per cent for the previous year. By the end of 2005 the UK had seen sales of around 2.7 million digital radios.

Perhaps surprisingly, we also watched less television with total reach falling across a number of demographic groups.

The biggest lost audience was at the more youthful end of the scale with reach to 16- to 24-year-olds falling 2.2 per cent.