Vodafone partners with Cityfibre to bring full-fibre broadband to UK

10 November, 2017, 10:55 | Author: Leticia Walters
  • Vodafone teams up with CityFibre to offer gigabit broadband

Vodafone has mounted an attack on the United Kingdom broadband market by backing plans to connect up to five million homes with new ultrafast fibre-optic lines, increasing pressure on BT to invest in upgrades and putting itself in more direct competition with Virgin Media. Vodafone will then be allowed to sell those lines before anyone else.

The first phase of the scheme will, which aims to deploy fibre to one million premises, will start in early-2019 and be "largely complete" by 2021, with the second phase of connecting the remaining four million premises set to be completed by 2025. Both companies expect that to take roughly three years to complete.

The companies have agreed they maintain the right to extend the partnership to connect another 4 million homes in 50 towns and cities by 2025.

Vodafone and CityFibre believe their partnership will help to "bridge Britain's fibre gap", with world-class gigabit-capable fibre-to-the-premises connections being brought to households, businesses and public sector sites including schools and hospitals.

Vodafone said the partnership with CityFibre represented "one of the most significant developments in United Kingdom telecommunications since the launch of ADSL broadband around 17 years ago".

CityFibre has carried out full-fibre projects in 42 towns around the United Kingdom, including a network in York with the backing of Sky and TalkTalk.

Greg Mesch, CityFibre's chief executive, said the partnership would unlock the UK's full fibre future and establish an unassailable wholesale infrastructure position across 20% of the United Kingdom broadband market.

This latest announcement comes shortly after Digital Minister Nick Hancock said the government would "strain every sinew" to get full fibre broadband rolled out in Britain.

The network will triple maximum broadband speeds available now in the UK. "With this commitment from Vodafone, we have a partner with whom we can transform the digital capabilities of millions of homes and businesses and establish an unassailable wholesale infrastructure position across 20% of the United Kingdom".

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