More Fibre for Broadband

Up to 10 million homes will get fibre-optic based broadband in the next few years, if recently announced plans to replace much of the UK's existing copper wire network are completed on time.

Fibre rollout will be a mix of FTTH (fibre to the home), delivering top speeds up to 100Mbps, and fibre to the cabinet (FTTC), offering speeds up to 40Mbps. Most FTTH connections will go to new-build developments, leaving older properties with a copper connection to shared access at their nearest fibre terminus - at the lower maximum speed of 40Mbps. Fibre has long been viewed as the next step in broadband because it provides speeds beyond those available through cable or DSL connections, or even T1 or T3 lines. It is seen as an essential upgrade to fix the increasing broadband congestion caused by high-bandwidth services such as the BBC's iPlayer and will make it possible for households to run multiple high-bandwidth applications, such as high-definition TV, simultaneously.

According to the latest research from the Broadband Stakeholders Group, copper wiring, used in ADSL2+, can offer internet users a data upload speed of only 0.7mbps, even though the downlink can transfer data up to 24mbps.


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