Ofcom Orders BT To Share Poles For Faster Broadband Rollouts


In the UK, BT (British Telecom) has somewhat of a monopoly on the broadband services the vast majority of us have. While there are of course many providers, most of these make a living by leasing BT lines and property. Hence why the majority of phone packages include the BT line rental charge.

A ruling, in a report via the BBC, however, has deemed that BT must be more flexible with its property, particularly the iconic telegraph pole.

The ruling

The ruling, which can be read in full here, in brief details the future expansion of fiber-broadband to UK homes. At present, less than 3% of the UK has access to high-speed fiber optic internet. The remaining either have access to upgraded copper-broadband or standard. The first of these can allow for speeds of anything up to 300 megabits per second, the second of around 40-60mbps with the latter capable, if you’re lucky, of around 8mbps.

In plans by the UK government, they hope to have at least 6 million hopes capable of accessing fiber by 2020. 


Fiber Rollout

At present, there are around 25 million homes in the UK. Based on these figures roughly 750,000 currently have access. Therefore, the planned increase would see this figure upped by around 8 times as many. As such, some accommodations have to be made and part of this is that BT must allow over providers access to services BT has (or had) a relative monopoly on.

The proposals would see other internet providers costs to connect houses reduced by anything up to 50%.

The future of broadband

Currently, despite living in a somewhat isolated country village, I am able to gain access to the copper variety of internet. Meaning my current speed is around 60mbps. A stark increase to the former 12mbps I was getting. A fibre roll-out, just for myself would see that increase again significantly. There are, however, many in the UK that would dream of an 8mbps line.

The internet has changed a lot in the last 20 years and put simply, the service hasn’t moved quickly enough. Such changes will hopefully see us all, in the near future, get better access.

What do you think? Pleased at the changes? What is your current internet speed? – Let us know in the comments!


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