Germany’s “right to fast internet” law implemented for the first time

Germany’s “right to fast internet” law implemented for the first time

In 2021, Germany passed a law which promised all residents the right to fast internet. Thanks to a household in rural Lower Saxony, it has now been implemented for the first time.

Lower Saxony residents enforce their right to fast internet

Germany’s Federal Network Agency (Bundesnetzagentur) has obliged a communications company to provide fast, affordable internet service to a household in Lower Saxony, marking the first time that the country’s “right to fast internet” law has been applied since it was adopted in 2021.

Residents of the rural house in Lower Saxony had approached several communications companies and asked them to provide internet access, but all of them refused. After members of the household filed a complaint, the Bundesnetzagentur contacted one internet provider and instructed them to provide internet access to the house.

Under the law, communications companies are obliged to provide internet access to households in Germany regardless of location. This minimum level of service must meet strict requirements for download (at least 10 megabits per second) and upload speeds (at least 1,7 Mbit/s) and cost no more than 30 euros per month.

What will follow now that the Bundesnetzagentur has issued its order is still variable. It remains to be seen whether the communications company in question opens a legal battle to challenge the order, or supplies the household with an internet connection.

Berlin progresses with project for city-wide fibre optic connection

While many people living in rural areas in Germany have severe internet access issues, those living in cities are also impacted by ageing infrastructure.

Back in June 2023, only 18 percent of households in Berlin were said to have access to a fibre optic internet connection, leading Berlin Minister for the Economy Franziska Giffey to announce that the city would drastically expand its fibre optic infrastructure. A fibre optic connection uses threads of glass to send light signals and is the fastest way to transmit digital data across the fixed network internet.

As of March 2024, it is now estimated that around a third of Berliners (34,2) have access to a fibre optic internet connection. Giffey plans for all 2,2 million households in the city to have access by 2028.

Thumb image credit: Den Rozhnovsky /

Olivia Logan


Olivia Logan



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