Vodafone wants to get more SMBs hooked up to full fibre

Optical fiber
(Image credit: Pixabay)

Vodafone is looking to entice even the smallest business to upgrade to full fibre broadband, offering an enterprise-grade fibre to the premise (FTTP) service to any organisation with ten or fewer employees.

The new small and home office (SoHo) product promises speeds of at least 100Mbps, enhanced reliability, free installation, and dedicated support in 26 towns and UK cities, with connectivity delivered via either the Openreach or CityFibre networks. Coverage will expand to more locations in the coming months.

Vodafone says the enhanced connectivity will deliver a significant performance boost at a time when businesses of all sizes are undergoing a digital transformation and flexible working is becoming the norm.

Vodafone full fibre 

“Small businesses operate in an increasingly digital-first environment, one where virtual meetings, hybrid working and online commerce are the norm,” said Andrew Stevens, head of small and medium business at Vodafone. “People are now more likely to first encounter and engage with a typical small business online than they are ‘in real life’, and business owners need to know they can stay connected with remote teams to serve their customers and keep everything running smoothly.

“We’ve made it really simple to switch to superfast full fibre, with no upfront installation costs – perfect for today’s busy SoHo businesses who want to prioritise productivity and growth post-pandemic.”

Vodafone is also positioning the product as a way for small businesses to futureproof their infrastructure as the UK gears up to switch off its analogue copper-based telephone network. 

BT-owned Openreach wants to complete the switchover from Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN) to IP by the mid-2020s so its voice services can compete better with over the top (OTT) offerings such as Skype and WhatsApp.

Whereas PSTN requires a complex network of physical lines, IP services only need the Internet to function, meaning communications providers could simply deliver a digital voice service over the top of a more modern broadband system.

BT has so far announced more than 550 exchanges where it will stop selling analogue services to third parties within the next 12 months. 

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.