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BT announce 300Meg speeds for FTTH are coming in the spring
Wednesday 05 October 2011 10:35:52 by John Hunt

BT have announced that next spring they will be upping the download speeds on their fibre-to-the-home/premises (FTTH/P) broadband products to 300Mbps, a speed boost that will put them well out in front with the fastest broadband offering. BT will also make changes to their fibre-to-the-cabinet (FTTC) broadband services by doubling the downstream speeds up to 80Mbps. This FTTC boost had been talked about previously and both announcements will be welcome news for those who are looking for cutting edge broadband speeds.

Rollout of FTTH is only expected to reach around 25% of the country, whilst 2/3rds should be covered by 2015 by what BT call 'fibre broadband' which includes fibre-to-the-home and fibre-to-the-cabinet products. Currently only 6 exchange areas have been announced for the commercial 'early deployment' launch of FTTH at the end of this month, so BT are obviously keen to show the potential that this product holds in the future. It should be remembered that speeds on the FTTC product are still limited by the distance from your property to the cabinet in the road. For many, this is quite short so high speeds will be seen, but they may not be right up there at the 80meg limit.

"Today is a significant step in the UK’s broadband journey. These developments will transform broadband speeds across the country and propel the UK up the broadband league tables.

All our fibre products are fit for the future and these developments show that to be the case. As always, we want to go further and faster and so our journey doesn't end here. We can turn up the dial should there be demand and so we can look to the future with confidence.

No-one is keener than us to extend these super-fast speeds to rural areas and so we will be bidding for public funds to help extend these services even further. The challenge is a tough one but by working with the public sector it is within our reach.

Liv Garfield, (Chief Executive) Openreach

With some able to receive blisteringly fast speeds, and others still stuck in the broadband slow-lane with just 2meg or lower speeds, this will truly create a digital divide, worse than we have seen before in the country.


Posted by dustofnations over 6 years ago
This is good news, for those that can get it, but surely there will need to be a reduction in the wholesale bandwidth prices, otherwise the connections will be tokenism than any real improvement over the status quo (for those on relatively fast connections already).

A 300Mbps connection will quickly use an extraordinary amount of bandwidth - and the only reason for such a product is surely to allow for high usage applications such as multiple high definition VoD streams per home.
Posted by balb0wa73 over 6 years ago
Im on FTTC , 11 megabit is all i get, £26 a month, shocking cable (aluminum), bad joints, BT wont do a thing.
Posted by mikecrawford80 over 6 years ago
Is this BT just turning up the dial or a rollout of the VDSL2 17a profile? Would people who could not get the full 40 Mbps see any improvement with this or is it just a marketing ploy?
Posted by balb0wa73 over 6 years ago
17a profile is meant to use the higher frequencies that arent there on long lines, so if you get 10-25mb, id say you wont see any improvement
Posted by cyberdoyle over 6 years ago
agree, the digital divide will grow ever wider, with rurals stuck on BET and satellites.
Posted by GMAN99 over 6 years ago
Damned if they do damned if they don't
Posted by SlimJ over 6 years ago
I wouold prefer BT cover all areas before turning the speeds up. Way to go with closing the digital divide up, it's going to be even wider!
Posted by themanstan over 6 years ago
I agree there will be a significant digital divide.
But, for rural connections that are distant from cabinets or exchanges there will ahve to be some form of local or national government subsidy/grant. Because as I see it any revision to USO will have the same charging scheme as before, where costs above ~£3.5K will have to bourne by the consumer.
Posted by GMAN99 over 6 years ago
"Posted by SlimJ 3 minutes ago
I wouold prefer BT cover all areas before turning the speeds up." Its nothing new, Virgin have been doing this for years its not JUST about BT other providers can provide broadband
Posted by orly2 over 6 years ago
Excellent news. Doubt either the FTTH or FTTC improvement will matter to me though. I get about 23Mbit on FTTC so unlikely to improve much.

Still, glad to see BT are progressing at pace and should be available to millions more in the coming years.

A few years ago many speculated whether we'd ever see fibre services. Or see them before 2030...
Posted by AndrueC over 6 years ago
@dustofnations:'Multiple VoD streams'. You can have twenty to thirty with that kind of bandwidth :)
Posted by SlimJ over 6 years ago
@GMAN99 I agree. I'm lucky enough to be connected with VFast wireless service has FTTC/H is not gonna happen on our rural exchange for a long while! I can have up to 25mbit at the moment so that's sufficient, if they can deliver 100mbit speeds at some stage that will be pretty good.
Posted by fastman over 6 years ago
balb0wa73 - FTTC -- 11 meg assume distance from Cab is long
Posted by fastman over 6 years ago
40 - 80 increase for FTTC is included as well bridges gap between 40 - 100
Posted by GMAN99 over 6 years ago
If I were lucky enough to be getting FTTP (I'm not) I don't think I'd be losing any sleep about an increase to 300Mbps. I certainly wouldn't be phoning BT pleading for them to think again and think about the rural folk
Posted by Nelix01 over 6 years ago
People have to remember that as a PLC, BT is putting £2.5 Billion of its own money into delivering FTTC/P to the UK. This is a lot more than and does not include any of the £530 million that the government has put up to help fund the rollout of SFBB services. BT has to provide a return on its investment and protect shareholder interests.

No other company is putting an investment of this size into the UK BB.
Posted by otester over 6 years ago

In addition they also have to provide wholesale acess.
Posted by NilSatisOptimum over 6 years ago
Another divide progressing in the UK in name of profit, never in all my days, would I imagine this to be the case, here in the UK? However perhaps this will increase their current Infinity sales!
Posted by Red_Kelt over 6 years ago
The only answer to this BB divide is to re-nationalise BT. Don't you just wish you could erase the 1980's and Thatcher.
Posted by GMAN99 over 6 years ago
lol, I doubt we'd even have a broadband network to speak of (or phones) if it was still in the hands of the government
Posted by TheGuv over 6 years ago
Back when they were rolling out ADSL Max I did think BT was doing a great job of getting round the country, doing the upgrades then rolling it out "officially" all at the same time so all exchanges were the same.

Now - I think not. I think we have to see investment to the most populated areas in order to generate revenues to upgrade the rural parts of the UK.

I think it will be quicker in the long term.

What I really want to see from Openreach is a return to targets to drive/focus upgrades with some form of co-op from ISPs.
Posted by balb0wa73 over 6 years ago
1060 Metres, Openreach admit joints are bad, but they wont do anything as underground/ducts

Posted by fastman about 4 hours ago
balb0wa73 - FTTC -- 11 meg assume distance from Cab is long
Posted by themanstan over 6 years ago
From the perspective of the amount of work needed ADSL was far simpler.

Engineers go to exchange. Place hardware in exchange and connect up.

FTTC and FTTH, are far more involved...
e.g. FTTC:-
Engineer/contractors go to random place on map.
Add new cabinet/s, lay fibre cable to cabinet. Get power to cabinet.
Install hardware in cabinet.
Revise connections at exchange.
Send engineer to property, install hardware, check connection.

Probably over-simplified...
Posted by GMAN99 over 6 years ago
Don't forget the exchange needs to be 21CN'd :)

Its the biggest overhaul for many many years, a lot don't understand that.
Posted by tommy45 over 6 years ago
It's alright having a 300mbps downstream, but what about the upstream ? time & time again all providers disregard the need for upstream speeds, i for one would be very happy with a 100mbps downstream and a 50mbps upstream service,(unlimited) no real need for grater on your average domestic set up, then also work on routing /peering to us ect ,
Posted by Dixinormous over 6 years ago
While 2/3rds of upstream usage is torrents Tommy operators aren't going to go out of their way to fire the speeds up super high.

Routing and peering to USA is fine, we're a stop-off point for most of the traffic from Europe to the US and are superbly connected to it.
Posted by Alchemyfire over 6 years ago
I asked this question sometime ago, but with higher speeds, does the UK have sufficient national and international backhaul?
Posted by tommy45 over 6 years ago
@Dixinormous i disagree, as latency to places like Canada are always around the 100ms mark, not good for online gaming, IMO it could be better(it is for your stock's & shares) sub they get around 60ms,
As for upload being mostly of use for p2p use, again not true, p2p has almost died it's death,compared to what once was, some of us would like to run servers, or just be able to send files without having to wait ages & tie up the connection too
Posted by tommy45 over 6 years ago
Also i know people who live in other European countries who get lower latency to the usa,the
Netherlands being one such country,
Posted by GMAN99 over 6 years ago
tommy, laws of physics are involved :)

Are you saying that stock/share traders get 60ms to Canada? If so I'm sure they pay for it, not £20-30 a month for a broadband connection.
Posted by tommer over 6 years ago
wow, 600 times faster than my existing connection.
Posted by Saurus over 6 years ago
Lol which Public Sector are they talking about, the one this Government is rapidly dismantling and probably wont exist by the time the majority of the country is getting ready for FTTC/P?
Posted by otester over 6 years ago

P2P use is increasing all the time, and why try to hide it? Sharing culture is only ever a good thing, so some greedy monopoly men in posh suites say otherwise, but who really cares?
Posted by driz over 6 years ago
I get about 75ms to New York on my Be ADSL connection with a 5ms first hop - about 70ms between NY and London. That's about as good as you're going to get and I don't think that other european countries are going to be doing any better. Routing and peering to the USA is brilliant from where I'm sitting.
Posted by tommy45 over 6 years ago
@otester p2p (torrents) is something i very seldom use these days,Plus there are better ways of getting whatever is available via torrents,and more, the last time i used torrent was to d/l a episode of a tv program that the bbc in it's wisdom had removed from it's servers
Posted by spetznaz over 6 years ago
Who cares? (apart from the 1% of the UK that can actually get it).

Posted by darren_mccoy over 6 years ago
This makes me sick, I only live half a mile from the exchange and I'm getting just over one meg, BT need to let people install their own fibre and connect it up to their nearest green box. I could install fibre across two medium sized fields and have the best connection in the world.
Posted by NICK_ADSL_UK over 6 years ago
I live just one mile from the control tower at gatwick airport on a new housing estate with a brand new green box with fibre to go in so i thought
So i asked one of the engineers who was taking a look around and said to him when will it be up and running and he replied it wont

So much for BT probably one of the worst companies i have come across in my lifetime
Posted by GMAN99 over 6 years ago
Get Virgin then
Posted by themanstan over 6 years ago
It's indicative of some of the comments here that people have no idea how long natiowide infrastructure builds take. BT only received regulatory approval for domestic fibre mid-2009... France which has been building it's fibre network since 2006 and will only reach 40% of the population by 2015, hitting 60% by 2020... yes they are doing FTTH, but imagine how long you'd have to wait if BT didn't take this intermediate route with FTTC/H and just went FTTH. Be patient these things take time.
Posted by themanstan over 6 years ago
Nick, at least BT is diverting resources to ensure your new build has the infrastructure in place when your area does become included in roll-out plans.
Posted by fibrebunny over 6 years ago
ADSL rollout was a protracted affair with threats to split BT and other such nonsense. We had a divide then, we have a divide between good lines and bad now. Future rollout will create a new tier of division. Regulation could change, costs may reduce, new services might arise. All of which could encourage further rollout. You have to start somewhere, better that than nothing at all.
Posted by AndrueC over 6 years ago
@Red_Kelt:Nationalise? What you mean hand control and planning of the biggest IT project in UK history to the government? Are you mad?

Most people think the government is doing a lousy job at what it's supposed to be doing. Its track record on IT projects is appalling - only a couple of weeks ago there was confirmation of the failure of a big NHS project.
Posted by AndrueC over 6 years ago
And what about cost? Were you on this planet when the MP expenses scandal was running? What about the infamous '£100 for a light bulb' courtesy of the MoD.

You really want that shower in charge of our national communications networks? Last time they were in control they deprived it of funds and ran it into the ground. The only interest they have in it this time round is in snooping and protecting the interests of big business.
Posted by fastman over 6 years ago
darren_mccoy -- this is always assuming that the exchange in deployed and if no dslam next to the PCP is either not declared exchnage no no Dslams) or declared and not stood up or declared and excluded -- your SAUID for your exchnage will give a clue to which one of those may be correct
Posted by fastman over 6 years ago
fro those who wanted BT nationalised i rembers what it swas like then with 249,000 on the UK staff and no competition-- careful what you wish for !!!
Posted by Dixinormous over 6 years ago
otester - p2p as a % of traffic is decreasing now. Some people actually use legal alternatives, you know, buying content. An alien concept to yourself I know.

Tommy - the costs of those low-latency links are nuts, way outside consumer grade pricing.

The digital divide stuff is dumb. By that token let's downgrade everyone to 2Mb until every farm and barn can receive super-fast.
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) over 6 years ago
The six locations for FTTP are geographically diverse, and do mean people have options available at least now.

As for saying fibre roll-out is slower than ADSL, many forget the screams about why not my exchange back in 2002/2003 and all the campaigning that went on.
Posted by GMAN99 over 6 years ago
Indeed Dixi :) there already is an electric/gas/water mains divide, no harm in adding another! :)
Posted by New_Londoner over 6 years ago
Excellent point, don't forget the sewerage divide too! I vote everyone gets septic tanks until its sorted for all!! ;-)
Posted by themanstan over 6 years ago
Not forgetting the North South beer price divide!!!
Posted by Dixinormous over 6 years ago
And the property prices, I want my £200k 4 bed house, not a £300k 2 bed flat!
Posted by NilSatisOptimum over 6 years ago
One thing trying to equal a established divide another watching one develop. However, I'm alright Jack!
Posted by Dixinormous over 6 years ago
We all make our choices in life - no-one moves from London to the sticks anticipating buses every 5 minutes, trains every 10, and a metro service.

This is one that's been done to death though. It is what it is and it's that way for very valid reasons.
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) over 6 years ago
•Ashford (Middlesex)
•Bradwell Abbey
•Chester South
•Highams Park
•St Austell

One place in London. Or has everyone forgot.
Posted by Dixinormous over 6 years ago
Two Andrew, Ashford (Middlesex) is in Greater London.
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) over 6 years ago
Ashford yes, just south of Heathrow and east of Staines. Hardly what one would call central.

Posted by PhilCoates over 6 years ago
"We all make our choices in life .... and a metro service."

This is another stereotype which just gets repeated ad nauseam and its irritating.

I moved back to a rural area to maintain my mother-in-law at home rather than relying on the state to feed, water and house her. I did not move back to a rural idyll or second home.

As us rural dwellers are allowed to own PCs and Macs like everyone else I downloaded an update to Reason at 3.2GB which took 10 hours and 1/5th of my monthly download 'allowance' - would anyone deliberately put themselves in such a position and then bitch about it?

Posted by omnius over 6 years ago
ive never seen this answered yet but can fttc be converted to ftth/p at a later stage???
Posted by GMAN99 over 6 years ago
Technically yes the cab could be a local fibre distribution hub for the streets around it, whether they'll actually do that is another matter because you don't actually need a cab for FTTH/P
Posted by Apilar over 6 years ago
@tommy45 P2P is far from dead. BitTorrent is no 1 protocol.
Posted by Oddball over 6 years ago
300mbits and a 40gb cap per month you can use up in less than a few hours. hmmm...
Posted by GMAN99 over 6 years ago
Is there a 40gig cap?
Posted by creakycopperline over 6 years ago
oh poor BT, persecuted by big bad ofcom, and bullied by virgin and other mean telcos, forced to open their network instead of being allowed to be a monopoly, tell me how long you been a BT engineer or were?

Posted by GMAN99 3 days ago
Damned if they do damned if they don't
Posted by creakycopperline over 6 years ago
I wouold prefer BT cover all areas before turning the speeds up." Its nothing new, Virgin have been doing this for years its not JUST about BT other providers can provide broadband

i had to read that twice.
Posted by themanstan over 6 years ago
But it's true Creaky.... you damn them if they do or if they don't....
Posted by New_Londoner over 6 years ago
WHilst some may well "prefer BT cover all areas before turning the speeds up", its hardly a model that would be popular for shareholders wanting to see a profit.

And why not ask the same of Virgin, the mobile operators etc? None of these provide universal coverage - indeed they all provide far less broadband coverage in terms of % of the population than BT.

IMHO The issue of the digital divide is one for government, not the private sector to resolve.
Posted by john_beck_uk over 6 years ago
I did not realise the edge of Huntingdon was classified as a rural area (see broadband "not spot" map). Broadband speed of less than 2Mb is hardly helping the broadband divide.
Posted by john_beck_uk over 6 years ago
Sorry, should have been DIGITAL divide.
Posted by chrysalis over 6 years ago
25% planned for FTTP, right now its an extremely low figure, so when is this 25% planned to be done? as someone soggested the reason my city and other cities have been skipped for FTTC is they likely FTTP candidates.
Posted by chrysalis over 6 years ago
In resposne to new londener to be fair VMs coverage of FTTC style services is currently significantly higher than BT, its only copper based services BT has higher coverage and that was of course a network already built when they brought it.
Posted by charlestown over 6 years ago
I'm in St Austell, which is one of the 6 listed pilot areas but when I asked BT they don't know anything about it and can't tell me when it will be available... That's strange considering I've seen them cabling in various nearby roads including our own. Also the Sam Knows site doesn't list anything new for St Austell.

Posted by noobaside over 5 years ago
i live in ashford middlesex and according to bt no such trial is running ive asked every department several times any ideas??
Posted by allan_nub over 5 years ago
A few people have stated "My speeds are bad and I doubt FTTH will get me better". Luckily though, you're wrong. FTTH won't be upto sync speeds, you'll get the full speed. It should be a standard, but apparently everyones going to need to pay for it.
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