More than 500,000 Essex homes and businesses now have access
Essex is one of the counties leading BT’s roll-out of high-speed fibre broadband, it was announced today.
More than seven out of 10 Essex homes and businesses (71 per cent) now have access to the rapidly-growing network, which is already the most extensive of its kind in the UK. The much faster speeds are revolutionising the use of the internet, allowing businesses to grow and become more competitive and households to transform their online experience.
BT’s fibre broadband network is now available to more than 500,000 homes and businesses in Essex and more than 15 million in the UK as whole. Forty nine Essex exchanges have already been upgraded.
The BT investment is expected to give a major boost to the local economy. A recent report by Regeneris Consulting predicted that over the next 15 years the technology could give the economy of a typical town a £143 million boost, create 225 new jobs, 140 new start-up businesses and 1,000 more homeworkers.
Dave Hughes, BT’s East of England regional director, said: “This is fantastic news for the county and places Essex in a really strong position.
“BT is making a multi-million pound investment in Essex, which will be of vital importance to the future prosperity of the county. Our rapidly-growing network is helping businesses overcome tough and uncertain times, and offering new entertainment and educational opportunities for households.
“It’s an exciting time here in Essex and we are determined to do as much as we can to make the benefits of this investment as widely available as possible.”
Across the UK, BT’s £2.5 billion fibre broadband roll-out programme is expanding all the time and is now due to pass two-thirds of UK premises – around 19 million premises – during Spring 2014, at least 18 months ahead of the original timetable.
Openreach, BT’s local network business, is primarily deploying fibre-to-the-cabinet (FTTC) technology, where the fibre runs from the exchange to a local roadside cabinet. FTTC offers download speeds of up to 80Mbps and upload speeds of up to 20Mbps and could deliver even faster speeds in the future.
Openreach aims to start to make fibre-to-the-premises (FTTP) technology, where the fibre runs all the way to the home or business, commercially available on demand in areas where fibre broadband has been deployed. FTTP-on-demand will offer the top current download speed of 330Mbps . According to the regulator Ofcom, the current average UK residential broadband download speed is 12Mbps.
At home, fibre broadband enables a family to simultaneously download a movie, watch a TV replay service, surf the internet and play games online all at the same time. A whole album can be downloaded in less than 30 seconds and a feature length HD movie in less than 10 minutes, whilst high-resolution photos can be uploaded to Facebook in seconds.
Openreach offers fibre broadband access to all service providers on an open, wholesale basis, underpinning a competitive market. For further information on Openreach’s fibre broadband programme visit www.superfast-openreach.co.uk
Essex exchanges now upgraded
BASILDON, BILLERICAY, BOREHAM, BRAINTREE, BRENTWOOD, BROOMFIELD, CANVEY ISLAND, CHAFFORD, CHELMSFORD, CLACTON-ON-SEA, COLCHESTER, DANBURY, DOWNHALL, EAST BAY, EASTWOOD, EPPING, FRINTON- ON-SEA, GRAYS THURROCK, GREAT BADDOW, GREAT DUNMOW, HADLEIGH, HALSTEAD, HARLOW, HAWKWELL, HIGHWOODS, LAINDON, LEIGH ON SEA, LOUGHTON, MALDON, MANNINGTREE, MARINE, NORTH BENFLEET, PURFLEET, RAYLEIGH, ROCHFORD, SHOEBURYNESS, SOUTH BENFLEET, SOUTH OCKENDON, SOUTHEND ON SEA, STANFORD-LE-HOPE, STANSTED, THORPE BAY, TILBURY, TIPTREE, VANGE, WICKFORD WITHAM, WIVENHOE AND WOODHAM FERRERS
Notes to editors
Due to the current network topography, and the economics of deployment, it is likely that some premises within the selected exchange areas will not initially be able to access fibre-based broadband. Openreach is actively looking at alternative solutions for these locations