Broadband News

August 2020 update on broadband availability across the UK, nations and regions

The latest figures from our analysis of all the various roll-outs and taking into account overlaps shows that if Virgin Media was to suddenly switch on its Gig1 service to all its UK footprint overnight the UK would have Gigabit coverage of 60.06%. For those worried that the full fibre providers are overlapping each other two much we can share some figures, 1% of UK premises have a choice of two or more FTTP providers. Looking specifically at Openreach 0.68% of UK premises have Openreach FTTP available and 1 or more other FTTP option.

thinkbroadband analysis of Superfast, USC, USO and Full Fibre Broadband Coverage across the UK, its nations and regions for premises
In descending order of Gigabit coverage - figures 7th September 2020
(change since 7th August 2020)
Area% full and partial fibre based
i.e. VDSL2, G.fast or
FTTP or
Cable
% superfast
30 Mbps or faster
% Ultrafast
100 Mbps or faster
FTTP, cable, G.fast
Gigabit%
Full Fibre All Providers
 
Openreach and KCOM FTTP
% Under 2 Mbps download% Below USO
10 Mbps download

Northern Ireland 99.3% 89.2% (=) 60.03% (+0.09) 50.49% 50.49% (+0.86)
 44.96% (+0.70)
4.0% 6.9% (=)
840,543 Premises 835,013 749,901 504,597 424,418 424,418
 377,932
33,739 57,589
West Midlands 99% 97.7% (=) 72.3% (+0.4) 46.58% 14.17% (+0.84)
 9.76% (+0.41)
0.2% 0.7% (=)
2,940,374 Premises 2,910,313 2,872,301 2,127,218 1,369,613 416,671
 286,963
5,782 21,520
Scotland 98% 94.3% (=) 53.7% (+0.3) 41.66% 13.87% (+0.95)
 7.68% (+0.77)
1.2% 3.2% (=)
2,751,727 Premises 2,695,741 2,595,391 1,478,221 1,146,308 381,730
 211,349
32,235 87,338
North West 99% 97.0% (=) 59.1% (+0.4) 33.7% 14.83% (+0.66)
 10.80% (+0.65)
0.4% 1.2% (=)
4,128,076 Premises 4,087,533 4,005,001 2,440,729 1,392,097 612,139
 445,834
18,045 48,151
Yorkshire and Humber 98.8% 97% (=) 65.4% (+0.4) 33.61% 22.30% (+1.89)
 14.84% (+0.44)(includes KCom Lightstream)
0.4% 1.1% (=)
2,710,977 Premises 2,678,087 2,630,620 1,774,372 911,049 604,481
 402,423
10,163 29,112
United Kingdom 98.7% 96.4% (=) 62.5% (+0.4) 26.36% 16.22% (+0.74)
 10.02% (+0.55)
(includes KCom Lightstream)
0.5% 1.4% (-0.1)
30,520,899 Premises 30,127,053 29,436,061 19,068,185 8,046,372 4,949,263
 3,058,354
154,785 439,292
Great Britain 98.7% 96.6% (=) 62.6% (+0.4) 25.68% 15.25% (+0.73)
 9.03% (+0.51)(includes KCom Lightstream)
0.4% 1.3% (=)
29,680,356 Premises 29,292,040 28,686,160 18,563,588 7,621,954 4,524,845
 2,680,422
121,046 381,703
England 98.8% 97% (=) 64.8% (+0.4) 24.54% 15.37% (+0.69)
 8.98% (+0.47)(includes KCom Lightstream)
0.3% 1% (=)
25,428,134 Premises 25,125,324 24,664,587 16,476,108 6,239,805 3,907,274
 2,284,213
78,025 256,552
South East 99.2% 97.5% (=) 63% (+0.7) 24.19% 12.96% (+1.17)
 5.36% (+0.55)
0.2% 0.7% (=)
2,291,068 Premises 2,273,675 2,234,669 1,442,865 554,274 296,986
 122,904
4,282 165,847
London 98.4% 97.6% (=) 78.2% (+0.2) 18.65% 18.65% (+0.47)
 7.77% (+0.38)
0.1% 0.5% (=)
4,708,655 Premises 4,635,664 4,594,124 3,683,123 878,028 878,028
365,877
4,219 22,375
South West 98.5% 95.3% (=) 54.5% (+0.3) 17.77% 16.81% (+0.43)
 11.03% (+0.36)
0.6% 1.9% (=)
3,739,133 Premises 3,681,188 3,565,165 2,038,284 664,369 628,594
 412,476
21,484 69,424
Wales 98% 95.0% (=) 40.6% (+0.4) 15.72% 15.72% (+0.98)
 12.32% (+0.88)
0.7% 2.5% (=)
1,500,495 Premises 1,470,975 1,426,182 609,259 235,841 235,841
 184,860
10,786 37,813
East Midlands 99.3% 97.7% (=) 66.3% (+0.1) 11.49%

11.49% (+0.3)
 6.03% (+0.23)

0.2% 0.7% (-0.1)
1,169,064 Premises 1,161,269 1,142,610 775,502 134,345

134,345
70,542

2,772 8,721
East of England 98.9% 96.4% (=) 58% (+0.4) 9.87% 9.87% (+0.79)
5.43% (+0.70)
0.3% 1.2% (=)
2,767,810 Premises 2,736,290 2,669,110 1,605,052 273,249 273,249
 150,241
9,389 33,754
North East 98.8% 97.7% (=) 60.5% (+0.5) 6.45% 6.45% (+0.72)
2.77% (+0.67)
0.2% 0.8% (=)
972,977 Premises 961,305 950,987 588,963 62,781 62,781
 26,953
1,888 7,648

No change in the order of the nations and regions this month, this was down to no big blocks of the Virgin Media Gig1 service being rolled out.

Comments

If I'm reading the figures correctly, then the number of full fibre connections is rising nicely, but the number of USO and sub-superfast connections is almost static. So the full fibre is being rolled out almost exclusively to areas that are already superfast.

  • sheephouse
  • 18 days ago

That is roughly correct.

Look at the history timelines on https://labs.thinkbroadband.com/local and change in pace of the various roll-outs over time is very apparent

  • andrew
  • thinkbroadband staff
  • 18 days ago

Hi Broadband Watchers. Until TBB updates the Post Codes to the correct availability the USO result will be out .

  • Blackmamba
  • 18 days ago

And as always if anyone has info on postcodes where we are missing out on superfast or FTTP availability a simple list of postcode(s) is all anyone needs to prod us with.

We cannot look at every postcode every day, so there will always be some lag in the system

  • andrew
  • thinkbroadband staff
  • 18 days ago

Yay i'm in the second worst area for gigabit coverage :/
Why aren't farmers up in arms about it in Bedfordshire?
I want 8K youtube videos about sheep too. Seriously tho, cityfibre/talktalk/vodafone/openreach ? where are you guys...

  • lordxenu
  • 17 days ago

@lordxenu - You can be in London and still can be in a not spot. I live within five miles of Southampton in a small town and zero sign of Fiber of any kind (same for VM). I can't help but feel VM/BT Openreach are more interested in competing than expanding out to new areas.

  • cheesemp
  • 17 days ago

@cheesemp-"VM/BT Openreach are more interested in competing than expanding out to new areas"

I'm not trying to defend either VM or OpenReach but we need to remember that they are both owned by public companies answerable to their shareholders rather than charities. One might have hoped that BDUK, R100, etc, funding would have helped however there are still many areas both rural and city-centre with poor connections where the cost of installation is deemed to be uneconomic. Altnets and some of the smaller companies have much lower overheads hence their ability to go where neither VM nor OR go.

  • MCM999
  • 17 days ago

I have questioned before the rationality of a business model where it is not economical to install and maintain infrastructure in urban and suburban areas where the vast majority of people live.

I completely understand the challenges in remote rural areas and Scottish islands and Highlands but the business model (partly forced by regulation) should be such that all densely populated areas would be easily in scope. As it does not seem to be the case, I wonder whether the business model needs an upgrade instead of a new government subsidy programme.

  • hvis42
  • 16 days ago

@MCM999 - I think hvis42 has answered well for me. It makes sense that rural areas are harder to cover but towns of 10000 of people must be profitable but no one touches us so Openreach don't prioritise us. I bet if VM decided to cover us Openreach would be sticking fiber in quicker than VM could! It just feels like areas like mine subsidies the fight in the competition areas because we have no option but slow FTTC from openreach.

  • cheesemp
  • 16 days ago

cheesemp
You need to look at the price OR are allowed to charge by the regulator, then it will be a surprise any area is economic, ( The reason BT's share price has dropped to 20% of what is was 5 years ago before mass FTTP rollout started).
Every area has to be looked at to pick the cheapest parts to do to even reach breakeven.
Economically it sometimes looks like OR have to pick between a quick death with no customers and a slow death with a remote hope something changes. (Remember all CATV rollouts caused businesses to go bust, Virgin is the firm that picked up the infrastructure for free)

  • jumpmum
  • 16 days ago

@cheesemp Why do so many people seem to feel that because companies, in this case VM and OR, do business they should provide that product to everyone regardless of the cost of provision. Both will jump to provide where they see the possibility of a profit. Costs like technology keep changing so what might have been provided at a significant loss one year might be considered potentially profitable the next. I suspect VM & OR operate similarly so when an area becomes potentially profitable for one it does also for the other.

  • MCM999
  • 16 days ago

  • MCM999
  • 16 days ago

If jumpmum is correct and no area is viable then it makes more sense. I assumed it was easier to make a profit with no competitor... Still makes it damn clear most of us are going to be waiting a long time if we've no sign of VM...

  • cheesemp
  • 15 days ago

@cheesemp We're possibly both in the same or similar boat. In my case VM runs along the street bordering the development where I live however VM simply aren't interested in providing any service even to the 18 or so properties 2 or 3 metres from their cable. I'm fortunate that we do at least have FTTC but that was privately gap funded with residents stumping up approaching £19K towards OR's costs, we were previously all EO lines (75 properties). Without that we'd probably still be on a 5 or 6 down, 1 up ADSL2+ service. Location? Central London near the Oval.

  • MCM999
  • 14 days ago

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