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'150,000 more' to get fast internet
BT is to roll out superfast broadband to 21 areas in Scotland, covering around 150,000 homes
Superfast broadband is to be installed in around 150,000 homes across Scotland, according to BT.
Fibre broadband is being brought to 21 areas stretching from Oban to Stranraer in the latest phase of the company's £2.5 billion project to connect Scotland to the superfast network.
It will take the total number of those using superfast broadband in Scotland to around 985,000 by 2013.
BT's Scotland director Brendan Dick said: "The arrival of fibre broadband in each of these new locations will be a massive shot in the arm for the local economy, creating new businesses, jobs and educational opportunities.
"The benefits are major and wide ranging. As our new fibre network expands across Scotland, it also brings new potential for offering essential public services online and cost savings across the sectors.
"Local firms and households who make the switch to fibre broadband will be able to do so much more with their connection, whether they're using it for business, entertainment, education, social networking or shopping, or all of these at once.
"They're joining more than 10 million premises now passed by our fibre network and becoming part of one of the fastest roll-outs of the technology anywhere in the world."
A report by Regeneris Consulting earlier this year found that investment in next-generation broadband could create thousands of jobs and bring millions of pounds into the Scottish economy in the next 15 years.
It predicts that the economy of a typical UK town could receive a £143 million boost and 225 new jobs from the introduction of superfast broadband.
Infrastructure Secretary Alex Neil said: "Communities across Scotland should have access to superfast broadband, no matter where they are. That's why it is a key priority for us for all parts of Scotland to have next-generation, high-speed broadband."