Openreach’s fibre to the premise (FTTP) network is now available to more than 1.2 million homes and businesses.
BT-owned Openreach is embarking on a major build of FTTP, with ambitions to reach 10 million premises by the middle of the next decade. It has pledged to expand the scope of this rollout if the investment conditions are right.
The rollout is supported by the government, which wants 15 million properties to be connected to fibre by 2025 and wants nationwide coverage to be completed by 2033. It would then consider switching off the UK’s copper infrastructure.
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Openreach CEO Clive Selley said the company is on track to reach its initial target of three million homes and businesses by the end of 2020. In total, it is connected more than 14,000 properties every week.
“Since the launch of our build programme last year we’ve made huge progress – honing our skills, tools and techniques, driving our costs down and helping our engineers to go ever further, faster and more efficiently,” he said.
“Last month we announced plans for Salisbury to become the first entire city in the country to have access to our FTTP network – in what is expected to be the fastest city-wide network build in the UK.
“But it’s not all about being a fast builder, we’re also keen to encourage fast adoption. We recently launched a consultation with industry to decide how and when we upgrade customers to this new future-proofed digital network
“None of this would be possible without our engineering workforce – which is why it is fantastic to see so many new people wanting to join the country’s largest team of telecoms experts working to expand, upgrade, maintain and install services over Openreach’s national broadband network.”
The next stage of rollout will focus on Northern Ireland, with Armagh, Bangor, Ballymena, Greater Belfast, Coleraine, Derry-Londonderry, Enniskillen, Lisburn, Larne, Newry and Newtownards all earmarked for coverage. This brings the total number of ultrafast locations up to 38.
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Steve McCaskill is TechRadar Pro's resident mobile industry expert, covering all aspects of the UK and global news, from operators to service providers and everything in between. He is a former editor of Silicon UK and journalist with over a decade's experience in the technology industry, writing about technology, in particular, telecoms, mobile and sports tech, sports, video games and media.