Openreach 'futureproofs' full fibre network with Nokia kit

(Image credit: Openreach)

Openreach’s rollout of full fibre in the UK will be futureproofed against future demand and technological innovations through the use of Nokia’s Passive Optical Network (PON) portfolio.

The BT-owned company’s fibre to the premise (FTTP) network now covers 2.6 million properties and the intention is to reach 4.5 million by March next year.

A longer term goal is to cover 20 million premises by the end of the decade, subject to a favourable regulatory environment and necessary support.

Openreach Nokia

Nokia says its GPON and XGS-PON fibre access will ensure the network can be updated with software-defined innovations and virtualisation technologies. This will increase efficiency, allow for increased speeds, and enable Openreach to deploy additional capacity when it is needed. In time, 10Gbps symmetrical speeds could be possible.

The deal is complementary to Openreach’s partnership with Huawei, which has been a BT supplier since 2005.

“This new digital platform will help our economy to bounce back more quickly from the Covid-19 pandemic – enabling people to continue work from home, and millions of businesses to operate seamlessly online for decades to come,” said Clive Selley, Openreach CEO.  “Right now, we’re making the new network available to around 32,000 homes and businesses every week, and Nokia’s innovative solutions are helping us to build it better, broader and faster.”

“Our fibre solutions will help Openreach bring enhanced ultra-broadband services to millions of new customers across the UK today while our 10G PON technology will help to futureproof their network against whatever may come next,” added Sandra Motley, president of fixed networks at Nokia.

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.