Access to broadband for all UK citizens is looking increasingly likely to become a reality, with Lord Carter making his strongest hint yet about his plans for a digital Britain.

The Communications Minister was appointed in November to ensure that Britain stay at the cutting edge of the digital era, and Lord Carter has wasted no time in suggesting that broadband should be universal.

"Today we are way beyond the view that broadband is a niche product, it is an enabling and transformational service and therefore we have to look at how we can universalise it," he told the Westminster eForum.

"We have to ensure that fairness and access for all is more than a soundbite in a manifesto."

Media industry accused

Lord Carter also had words to say about the British media's failure to come up with a long-term public service broadcaster to rival the BBC.

Channel 4 and Five are both struggling in the current climate, and although a number of solutions have been posited, Lord Carter believes that the industry as a whole has failed to embrace developments.

"Given that this is supposed to be one of our most creative sectors, it is often one of the most conservative sectors when it comes to looking at future solutions," he added.

Although the media industry has often been accused of being impervious to criticism over its failure to stay current in the era of convergence, Lord Carter's comments will no doubt cause some red faces, especially in light of the success the BBC has enjoyed with its iPlayer.