Telecommunications giant BT has disclosed the list of the first batch of cities across UK which will have access to fibre-based super-fast broadband from the beginning of 2010.
29 cities - including areas of Belfast, Cardiff, Edinburgh, Glasgow, London and Greater Manchester - have been considered in the release which will see up to 500,000 homes and businesses connected to Openreach's fibre to the cabinet (FTTC) technology.
BT expects customers to reach speeds of up to 40Mbps initially with download speeds rising up to 60Mbps although no time frames have been provided. Upstream speeds are also expected to rise significantly to 10Mbps.
This should allow BT customers and wholesalers to reach speeds well beyond the current top speed service available from Virgin Media which reaches 50Mbps.
Opting for FTTC rather than FTTH (Fibre-to-the-Home) means that BT gives another lease of life to the "last mile" copper network infrastructure while slashing roll out costs and time frames.
The roll out is part of BT's £1.5 billion investment push to connect 40 percent of UK homes and businesses to the internet using fibre connections. Up to 10 million premises and households will be concerned by 2012.
BT has also said that the onus is now on the Communications Providers to make the most of the new broadband services and sell them to their customers.
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BT will be using VDSL2 technology to achieve those speeds it seems. While this is is still not full fibre optic, it is better than nothing and gives BT and its partners some room to breathe until the 20CN project is fully implemented. Furthermore, it is likely that customers will be content with the speed bump at least for a foreseeable future.
(Yorkshire Evening Post)