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UK’s answer to FTTH in the form of Ethernet in The First Mile

BSkyB's broadband arm, Easynet has launched UK's first Ethernet in the First Mile (EFM) service over copper using eight bonded pairs of copper last week.

While the current physical ceiling is 5.7Mbps (or 45.6Mbps for the eight pairs) Easynet will be offering only 24Mbps, possibly expanding afterwards. This constraint is due mainly to BT's own restrictions on local loop unbundling rather than Easynet own will.

EFM is the name given to a set of specifications that allow the Ethernet Protocol, widely used in Networking, to be used over media such as telephone wires and so on, effectively breathing new life in the POTS (plain old telephone system).

EFM is touted as a low cost alternative to Fibre to the Home (FTTH) which is popular in the Far East and has been credited with the growing penetration of extra high speeds access in Korea and Japan.

For the time being, EFM is being limited to small and medium businesses who can afford to pay £19K annually to get a real 10Mbps line.

Désiré has been musing and writing about technology during a career spanning four decades. He dabbled in website building and web hosting when DHTML and frames were en vogue and started writing about the impact of technology on society just before the start of the Y2K hysteria at the turn of the last millennium. Following an eight-year stint at where he discovered the joys of global tech-fests, Désiré now heads up TechRadar Pro. Previously he was a freelance technology journalist at Incisive Media, Breakthrough Publishing and Vnunet, and Business Magazine. He also launched and hosted the first Tech Radio Show on Radio Plus.