The European Broadband mapping portal represents a big step towards greater harmonisation of broadband data among EU Member States. The portal includes broadband data collected from public, national and private, as well as international initiatives on fixed and mobile services and socio-economic data from Eurostat for the same area.
The aim of the broadband mapping portal is to provide more transparency about broadband services to end-users. By presenting them with comparable data, the portal allows them to make more informed decisions about the availability of services in their region. This in turn could stimulate service providers to improve their services. Meanwhile, the EU mapping portal is also expected to become a key element of the policy-makers’ toolkit. On the portal they will be able to consult and compare data on broadband coverage, such as download and upload speeds. These data can be cross-linked with socio-economic indicators, such as population density, urban and rural regions, and GDP per capita from across Europe and within individual Member States, which in turn may inform future policy and regulatory decisions at EU, national, regional and local level.
The data that is not comparable is presented in two different views to account for the differences in definitions used by data providers. More detailed data of broadband mapping portals for each Member State is also accessible. An expert view for registered data providers also allows access to data with extended information.
The next phase of the EU mapping portal will aim to gather more harmonised data in line with the forthcoming guidelines on geographical surveys. More comparability of data will introduce more transparency about the quality of broadband services for users and stimulate improved standards in broadband quality. The broadband mapping tool will therefore become an important tool for European policy-makers and regulators, as they strive to make the Gigabit Society a reality for European citizens.