Broadband News

September update on state of broadband coverage across the UK and regions

Another few weeks have passed and the combination of what all the providers are delivering has been added up and is summarised below for the UK nation and regions, as always if you want more detail our postcode search will drill down to your local authority and/or constituency as well as giving feedback on the state of the individual postcode.

thinkbroadband calculation of Superfast, USC, USO and Fibre Broadband Coverage across the UK, its nations and regions for premises
In descending order of superfast coverage - figures 6th September 2017
(change since 7th July 2017)
Area% fibre based
VDSL2 or
FTTP or
Cable
% superfast
24 Mbps or faster
% superfast
30 Mbps or faster
% Ultrafast
100 Mbps or faster
% Openreach FTTP% Under 2 Mbps download% Under 10 Mbps download
North East 97.7% 96.5% (+0.2) 96.2% 52.8% (=) 0.06% 0.2% 1.3%
927,764 Premises 906,248 894,900 892,189 489,820 600 2,169 11,684
London 97.3% 96.3% (+0.2) 96.1% 71.1% (=) 1.90% 0.1% 0.7%
4,399,026 Premises 4,279,581 4,235,165 4,227,565 3,127,133 83,543 6,117 32,890
East Midlands 98.3% 96.1% (+0.2) 95.8% 58.7% (=) 0.15% 0.5% 1.8%
1,101,640 Premises 1,083,158 1,059,180 1,055,613 646,798 1,672 5,529 19,303
South East 98.1% 96% (+0.3) 95.6% 52.4% (=) 1.22% 0.3% 1.5%
2,155,121 Premises 2,114,398 2,068,477 2,060,105 1,129,569 26,303 7,067 31,884
West Midlands 97.7% 95.6% (+0.2) 95.3% 64.4% (=) 0.29% 0.4% 1.8%
2,768,270 Premises 2,704,734 2,647,660 2,638,649 1,783,403 8,113 11,276 49,364
North West 97.6% 95.1% (+0.3) 94.6% 48.5% (=) 1.02% 0.7% 2.4%
3,897,067 Premises 3,805,201 3,704,604 3,688,020 1,889,304 39,724 27,379 93,893
England 96.8% 94.4% (+0.3) 94% 55.8% (+0.1) 1.79% 0.6% 2.4%
23,899,045 Premises 23,139,963 22,550,018 22,453,299 13,326,947 427,532 133,315 568,238
United Kingdom 96.6% 93.7% (+0.3) 93.2% 52.9% (+0.1) 1.65% (+0.04) 0.8% 2.9%
28,524,837 Premises 27,566,354 26,722,912 26,593,038 15,077,004 469,257 226,378 840,965
Rest Of Scotland 95.7% 92.8% (+0.3) 92.4% 47% (=) 0.13% 1% 3.8%
2,338,618 Premises 2,237,092 2,170,787 2,160,137 1,101,473 3,027 23,531 89,650
East of England 96% 92.7% (+0.4) 92.2% 51.6% (=) 0.59% 0.7% 3.3%
2,602,957 Premises 2,497,811 2,411,840 2,398,703 1,343,022 15,341 19,438 87,149
Wales 95.7% 92% (+0.5) 91.2% 32.4% (+0.2) 2.62% (+0.14) 1% 4.6%
1,321,765 Premises 1,264,962 1,215,732 1,205,919 428,230 34,662 12,627 61,351
Yorkshire and Humber 94.2% 91.9% (+0.4) 91.5% 53.3% (+0.2) 5.26% (+0.2)(includes KCom Lightstream) 0.6% 3.7%
2,558,478 Premises 2,409,555 2,351,506 2,341,936 1,362,310 134,696 15,951 94,070
Scotland 94.9% 91.2% (+0.4) 90.7% 42.8% (+0.1) 0.12% (+0.01) 1.3% 5.1%
2,576,687 Premises 2,446,030 2,350,413 2,335,855 1,103,252 3,123 34,532 132,472
South West 95.7% 91.1% (+0.5) 90.3% 44.6% (=) 3.37% (+0.04) 1.1% 4.2%
3,488,722 Premises 3,339,277 3,176,686 3,150,519 1,555,588 117,540 38,389 148,001
Northern Ireland 98.4% 83.4% (+0.8) 82.2% 30.1% (+0.1) 0.54% (+0.1) 6.3% 10.8%
727,340 Premises 715,399 606,749 597,965 218,575 3,940 45,904 78,904
Highlands and Islands (HIE) 87.4% 74.6% (+1.2) 72.9% 0.1% (=) 0.09% (+0.01) 4.9% 18.8%
226,575 Premises 198,114 168,995 165,197 214 214 10,995 42,577

Infill has been a big feature of the last month and as with the previous few months the regions with the worst coverage are seeing the largest changes, though as ever if you drill down and look at the numbers still with only under 10 Mbps download options its easy to see why stories of bad broadband in the UK are so easy to source examples for.

There are only so many columns we can fit onto a page, and while our stats site does provide a full fibre figure its worth mentioning here and that is the UK is sitting at 2.66% of premises with the gold standard available, this includes Gigaclear, Hyperoptic, IFNL, B4RN and others. This is the figure the Government is keen to improve quickly and thus it will be interesting to see how much it changes. The local authority that leads on full fibre deployment is the City of Kingston Upon Hull at 55.6%, followed by East Riding of Yorkshire at 36.6% courtesy of KCom, Cornwall is in third place at 31.9% with Openreach GEA-FTTP and a shock in 4th place for some is the City and County of London at 30.7% this is largely down to the full fibre coverage of residential premises in the Barbican.

Wales still has large amounts of Openreach FTTP in the build stages and interestingly while we have not spotted any new G.fast pods ready for people to order a service on in the last month reports of the pods appearing are widespread. More interesting is that we believe we are starting to see the roll-out of the 2 million Openreach FTTP premises starting and this is showing up on business parks in particular.

A column missing from all our public data sets is tracking of what the proposed BT USO will have to deal with in terms of premises, the basic counter of premises with only a sub 10 Mbps download is down from 888,860 to 840,965 premises, but the BT USO also included a minimum 1 Mbps upload, effectively removing ADSL2+ as a USO option and this gives a higher 4.7% figure for the UK and this has dropped by 46,486 premises since we first published some regional data for the metric.

Comments

Thanks Andrew. Given so much of the remaining B-USO problem is in urban, I hope Ofcom kick that can down the road until industry solve the problem on their own and the BDUK funds and clawback are exhausted.
10MBps restriction is drawn from the limitations of copper gain technology. Applied to urban it can inhibit the full fibre ambition.
If BT want an uplift on the price control for WLA, they should agree a bigger FTTP volume and identify the incremental costs needed.

  • ValueforMoney
  • 3 months ago

The Scottish figures show how much the central belt sways the figures. When looking closer at such as the figures for parliamentary constituencies, in the SW the figures are little better than HIE area. Still no provision for rural properties outwith towns and villages.

  • brianhe
  • 3 months ago

I'm not sure that a 1Mbps upload removes ADSL2+ as a USO option. I've been trying to get something better than ADSL Max, and BT Business offered line bonding (I know residential wouldn't offer that, but they could). Further, since ADSL Max over BTW rather than 20CN IPStream has an increased upstream sync of 1Mbps, it may even be possible to meet BT's USO proposal with ADSL Max. As most premises have a spare pair available, there wouldn't me much in the way of infrastructure investment needed - probably just a smaller profit margin for the bonded cases, and the go ahead from Ofcom.

  • sheephouse
  • 3 months ago

Whilst most premises will have a spare pair, I suspect that the number of spare pair's in the D side cables will be a lot more limited, so that bonding option might not scale too well, and increasing D-side capacity to more remote locations would be expensive.

  • TheEulerID
  • 3 months ago

You may well be right, but I suspect it doesn't need to scale vastly to mop up some of the last dregs, including EO lines that are uneconomic to re-route (like mine). They also offer bonding ADSL with 3G/4G. The detail of any latency/data allowance/upload speed/download speed in a USO would make or break such an approach.

  • sheephouse
  • 3 months ago

If we are going to call a Max Premium sync of 832 Kbps is equal to 1 Mbps then they might as well not have stated the upload restriction.

Bonding while possible does add complications and may have a place, but I think the preferred solution would be more GEA products, particularly when you consider IPStream and ADSL2+ are BT Wholesale products not Openreach products.

  • andrew
  • thinkbroadband staff
  • 3 months ago

A 0.3% increase in the SFBB coverage isn't bad - and better than most of the recent months. Is that a natural improvement by BT, or have TBB been cleaning up the database?

4 more months of this will put us right on the cusp of 95% of the UK.

  • WWWombat
  • 3 months ago

It is a mixture of everything, e.g. while ultrafast % look static little bits of virgin here and there are adding to the superfast, plus the FTTP from Kcom, gigaclear, hyeroptic, b4rn, f4rn all add up. A good number of cabinets seem to be infill these days, so raw fibre figures are being caught up.

  • andrew
  • thinkbroadband staff
  • 3 months ago

Hi Broadband Watchers.
At last Wombat I am starting to agree with you with the 24 Meg position increasing daily and the 10 meg dropping in unison and with the (Dorking Mamba Project) starting to move closer to the 99.7% at 15 Meg (MP J Hunt ) will be pleased as more bespoke Cabs and fibre cable are becoming available in the urban areas across Super Surrey plus cable helping. Mr Saffron staff keep filling in the Post Codes so I can prove my point.

  • Blackmamba
  • 3 months ago

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