BT Openreach's fibre-to-the-home (FTTH) trials are now under way following a 6 month delay which has stopped some areas getting up to 100Mbps broadband, according to ISPreview. The pilots were scheduled to begin in January at the two brownfield sites of Bradwell Abbey in Milton Keynes and Highams Park, London, connecting homes and business in each region. The delay came following what BT learnt at earlier trials carried out at Kesgrave in Ipswich, close to their research facility at Adastral Park. Two additional areas are also to be added to the pilot which are Leytonstone, East London and York, bringing the total premises passed to around 40,000.
"We've learnt a great deal from our earlier technical trials of FTTP in Kesgrave, Suffolk. As a result of those learnings, we have decided to push back the start of the FTTP pilots in Bradwell Abbey and Highams Park to July. It's critical that we learn as much as we can from the pilots so that our commercial FTTP offering is introduced as smoothly as possible.
The pilot has commenced in Bradwell Abbey with Highams Park joining the pilot in September. The exact dates for the remaining two pilots will be confirmed by Autumn this year."BT Spokeswoman
If these pilots go well, BT may introduce more areas to receive fibre-to-the-home. This will one day be the way most people receive their Internet connection as it allows a continual upgrade in bandwidth by changing equipment at each end of the fibre optic cable. There is a significant investment required to run fibre optic broadband to replace every phone line that is used however.
A full-fibre based broadband solution like fibre-to-the-home is not affected in the same way by distance to the exchange so everyone should receive the same underlying service no matter if they live in a city centre close to the telephone exchange or several miles away in the rural countryside.