BT’s wholesale business Openreach is gearing up for a major upgrade to its fiber network, that aims to double the data rates provided to street cabinets in the UK.
The firm plans to open its fiber-to-the-cabinet (FTTC) product to communications providers in April, promising the move will deliver maximum data rates of 80-Mbps in the downlink and 20-Mbps up – double the rates currently available. It claims the uplink rate will be the fastest available to consumers in the UK, but that delivery of those rates to the public depends on their individual comms providers.
Mike Galvin, managing director of network investment at Openreach, says the upgrade is a milestone for UK broadband speeds. “[I]t is now up to broadband providers to decide how and when they offer these faster speeds to their customers. The platform is there and we are confident there will be demand for these enhanced services.”
Company information reveals that BT is spending the bulk of a £2.5 billion (€2.9 billion) fiber fund on FTTC – a commitment it states has already delivered high-speed fiber broadband to seven million addresses in the country. The firm pledges to roll the technology out to two-thirds of UK premises by end 2014, but hints that further penetration will only be enabled through access to public and private funding.