BT running one year ahead of fibre targets

BT expects to have connected two-thirds of UK premises to its fibre-based broadband network by the end of 2014 – one year ahead of its original target of 2015 – thanks to its recruitment of 520 new engineers, most of whom will be ex-armed forces.

The telco will be investing around £300m ($343m) over the next few years to fund this accelerated rollout, as part of its total investments of £ 2.5bn in commercial fibre broadband, based on a combination of Fibre-to-the-Home (FTTH) and Fibre-to-the-Cabinet (FTTC) technologies.

Around six million premises are believed to have already been connected to the new network, and this figure is expected to rise to 10mn next year, and then two-thirds of all UK homes and businesses in 2014.

“Thousands of our engineers are busy installing fibre broadband across the UK at an astonishing pace,” said Ian Livingston, CEO of BT. “The recruitment of an additional five hundred engineers will help us go even faster and ensure we are ready to help supply other areas should we win BDUK [Broadband Delivery UK] funds. We are proud that most of these jobs will be filled by ex-armed forces personnel.”

BT recently announced that it will increase the speed of its fastest fibre broadband product (delivered via FTTH) to 300 Mbps by spring of next year, and also double the speed of its FTTC offering from 40Mbps to 80Mbps.

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