Fibre to the Cabinet looks likely to be the winner in bringing next generation access speeds to many parts of the UK. Most proposals to date have talked about using VDSL, but the latest product descriptions appear to be backing VDSL2.
VDSL2 is already used in countries like Belgium, Denmark and Finland, and while it has a maximum speed of 250Mbps, this drops to 100Mbps on a 0.5km telephone line, and 50Mbps at 1km. These high speeds on short runs of copper telephone line are what make a cabinet based deployment of VDSL2 attractive.
Openreach in 2008 suggested three main configurations for the product:
These three configurations are not fixed speed, i.e. they represent rate adaptive products, so people who are burdened with an unusually long run of cable from the home to the nearest street cabinet may see lower speeds.
The much more symmetric nature that is proposed will please gamers and those remotely accessing hardware in their home, e.g. Slingbox devices streaming their TV. Lets hope that speeds like this do come to fruition and that the UK can catch up with other countries that started to deploy this technology in 2007 and 2008.