Broadband News

Hyperoptic tests 10 Gbps connections for homes

Hyperoptic at the premises served by build-to-rent provider Get Living has been testing 10 Gbps connectivity at East Village which was the site of the 2012 Athletes village with the trail described as being based on the leading full fibre technology with fibre optic network going all the way into the customers home.

This sounds a little different to the majority of Hyperoptic installs we've seen where fibre media converters are installed on a utility cabinet on each floor of apartment blocks and then Ethernet cabling ran into each apartment. It may be that the fibre is going into a utility cupboard inside each flat. 10 Gbps is not a common connection option on consumer devices but you can get laptops with 10GbE connectivity.

The amount of internet data used by people in the UK is growing by around half every year. So we’ll increasingly need full-fibre broadband services like this to provide faster, more reliable connections and capacity to our homes and offices. We’re seeing real momentum behind full-fibre, with bigger and bolder commitments from companies of all sizes to build broadband that can support the UK’s digital future.

Sharon White, Ofcom Chief Executive who was in attendance to witness trial

While we agree with the Ofcom CEO that usage is increasing year on year the levels of usage are a long way from justifying a major roll-out of 10 Gbps connectivity, and already services that offer 1 Gbps have customers discovering that services such as PlayStation Network and Xbox live cannot exploit the full bandwidth. The Steam Store with its massively multi-thread, multiple location downloads though should be able to saturate a 1 Gbps and probably a 10 Gbps connection. The biggest elephant in the room is Virgin Media with 300 Mbps and 350 Mbps services and once Liberty Global turns on DOCSIS 3.1 will be offering 500 Mbps and 1 Gbps type speeds and over cable infrastructure that has been in the ground for years.

It maybe that Hyperoptic has proof of downloading a 25GB Xbox in 20 seconds versus 33 minutes on a 100 Mbps connection, but based on what we've seen where even VDSL2 customers cannot max out their connections we remain sceptical to this claim and suspect it may be a calculation rather than an actual game download. The vast majority of video these days is not downloaded, so once you get speeds above 5 Mbps (HD Streaming) and 25 Mbps (UHD Streaming) then for the majority of people there is little difference between a 50 Mbps and a 500 Mbps connection, other than the ability to have more and more people streaming their own content. Hyperoptic give an example of a 75GB UHD movie downloading in just 1 minute compared to 1 hour 40 on a 100 Mbps connection, and while we have seen video at this bit rate that has only been in edit suites, Netflix, Amazon and YouTube Ultra HD content is generally encoded at a rate of around 20 to 30 Mbps, and live Ultra HD can be higher bit rates of 40 to 45 Mbps if the video encoder wants to maintain quality while still encoding live content. So your challenge on reading this if you choose to accept it is to find some UHD content encoded at 150 Mbps that is easily and legally available online.

Comments

Monstrous overkill, not going to be deployed to any scale any time soon, but nice PR piece :)

Given Hyperoptic have a single 1Gb backhaul to some buildings and multiple buildings on a couple of Gb ports bonded selling 10Gb wouldn't go well.

  • CarlThomas
  • 3 months ago

Quote from HyperOptic in BBC article:
"It wasn't long ago that people asked if 100Mbps connections are necessary. ... it has fast become the minimum many consumers demand"
I am dubious as to this. I wonder how many "many" actually is. I am guessing a low percentage. I wonder how many consumers on a gigabit capable link pay significantly more to get these speeds? Would be interesting to see HyperOptics customer stats for those on 30Mb, 150Mb and gigabit.

  • ian72
  • 3 months ago

I still don't have a 100Mbps connection (I could get one from one provider but it's not just about speed but also quality/features) and I'm quite happy; I would love to have 1Gbps.. I'm not sure if I'd pay for 10Gbps at home right now.

  • seb
  • thinkbroadband staff
  • 3 months ago

@ian72
Right to be dubious.

Old 2014 statistics for VM showed around 20% willing to pay beyond the minimum (of 30-50Mbps), and about half of that willing to take the top package.

Current UK broadband statistics (incl VM) show about 45% staying on basic ADSL, and 55% on NGA. Of the NGA subscribers, around 20% take higher packages.

Current OZ NBN stats show their FTTP subscribers choose similarly:
Basic (12/1): 32%
Superfast (25/5 - 50/2): 52%
Ultrafast (100/40): 16%
Higher (to 1000/400): less than 0.03%

For NBN's FTTC, the numbers are
12/1: 28%
25/5-50/20: 62%
100/40: 9%

  • WWWombat
  • 3 months ago

@Ian72 Don't need providers to tell us product splits, we can get a pretty good idea from analysis of speedtests and its around

15-20% picking 30 Mbps
15-70% picking 150 Mbps (was previously 100 Mbps but they did speed bump)
15% on Gigabit product

Based on marketing theory, if the middle product was just 80 Mbps suspect you'd have a very similar split too.

Rough and ready Virgin Media

1-2% on 300 or 350 Mbps
10-15% on 200 Mbps
30% on 100 Mbps
30% on 70 Mbps
20% on sub 50 Mbps including legacy who refuse all upgrades

  • andrew
  • thinkbroadband staff
  • 3 months ago

10 GP is overkill now for 99.9% of people, but it probably won't be in the future. Who knows what the future holds that will need massive amounts of data. I think building a 10 GB network is just future proofing us and building good infrastructure for the next generation.

  • steve14
  • 3 months ago

I think this exercise was more about attracting investors than customers. Knowing that the network has a long lifetime ahead of it and won't become obsolete quickly is reassuring for investors.

  • sheephouse
  • 3 months ago

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