UK hits 15% full fibre mark



The FTTP roll-outs have continued throughout lockdown and the pace appears to be picking up. 


The jump from 14% to 15% has taken 48 days, whereas the previous jump to 14% had taken 56 days. 12 months ago at the end of July 2019 the FTTP coverage was just 8.4%. The UK figure as of 9am on 16th July is 15.02% of UK premises with 1 or more FTTP option available to order.


The lockdown while not affecting the roll-outs did make it harder for people to order and get the services installed but with the easing so long as precautions are taken getting services installed should be fairly straightforward. With lots of people contemplating do they return to the office full time or mix and match office days with working from home, we expect there to be a rise in people taking up full-fibre services, both for the higher upload speeds but once any initial setup faults get fixed it should be a lot more reliable in the long time than DSL services.


One cautionary note if you are chasing the ultimate in low latency that FTTP is not inherently massively better than VDSL2 unless you have a high level of interleaving error correction. A good FTTC line with can ping close to your ISP network at under 10ms, and good in does not necessarily mean short lines, the latency is driven by interleaving and physical network distance to where you are pinging. 

The top twelve local authorities for full-fibre availability are listed below if you want to see the full list visit  https://labs.thinkbroadband.com/local/councils which is sortable and links to each individual council. 

  1. City of Kingston upon Hull 99.03%

  2. Belfast 72.82%

  3. Milton Keynes 68.47%

  4. York 62.09%

  5. Salford District 58.5%

  6. Lisburn and Castlereagh 57.07%

  7. Tameside District 56.71%

  8. Exeter District 56.52%

  9. Derry and Strabane 54.15%

  10. Ards and North Down 51.45%

  11. Barking and Dagenham 51.16%

  12. City of Westminster 50.73%

These 12 are the only ones with coverage above 50%. Unfortunately at the bottom end of the table there are councils like Isles of Scilly 0%, Orkney Islands 0.17%, City of Portsmouth 0.52%, Lincoln District 0.69% and West Dunbartonshire 0.7% so it is clear the coverage is far from uniform.


Some of the areas added on Wednesday include Openreach FTTP in Paignton, Barry, Wales and Bathgate, Scotland as well as new areas for the Vodafone Gigafast service in Huddersfield and Coventry.


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