UK Business is ‘missing a trick’ by not taking advantage of faster Fibre Optic Broadband already available today
There’s no doubt that access to faster internet services is crucial for the UK business community and an essential ingredient for the development of the UK economy. Clearly the UK government recognise this, with another £50 million of funding announced in the Chancellor’s autumn statement, but their rhetoric about ambitious goals for the future are overshadowing what’s available today in terms of “Superfast Broadband” and the benefits that this can bring UK businesses right now.
Over half of premises in the UK can already access Fibre Optic Broadband based on FTTC (Fibre To The Cabinet – explained later in this article) technology that offers download speeds of up to 76Mbps and upload speeds of up to 19Mbps. Typically customers experience 50-60Mbps download speeds with this form of Fibre Optic Broadband, which is 8 – 10 times faster than a typical traditional broadband service. However, recent industry figures suggest that where superfast broadband has already been made available in the UK (typically FTTC), only 7% of customers have actually taken it up. Within Zen’s own customers’ take-up rate stands at 18%, but we have been communicating the benefits of Fibre Optic Broadband to our customers for over two years since we first introduced this service in the autumn of 2010.
This leads me to the conclusion that UK Internet users, especially small businesses, are missing out on the benefits of faster Fibre Optic Broadband services that are already available TODAY! It is important that business who don’t have IT and technology expertise, are provided with better information and education about faster Internet services they can access right now. Government logically has a big part to play in this but appears far more interested, may be even obsessed, in grabbing headlines about building Europe’s best Fibre To The Premises (FTTP) network by 2015. Clearly it’s important to have ambitious plans for the future, but please let’s make sure that UK plc is taking full advantage of faster internet services that are already available today.
The bottom line is that Fibre Optic Broadband is fast, reliable, affordable and already widely available with more being deployed every month, let’s take advantage of it today!
FTTC is …
Fibre to the Cabinet or FTTC describes a deployment where a fibre cable runs from a BT exchange to a street cabinet that contains the Broadband equipment. From here it is linked to business premises and homes via just the last few hundred metres of existing copper cable. Because all but the last few hundred metres of the connection is based fibre optic, FTTC services are much faster and more reliable than traditional broadband services. Zen provides FTTC services with a choice of download speeds of up to 38Mbps and up to 76Mbps with prices from £23 per month excluding VAT. FTTC is available to approximately 50% of UK premises.
Fibre to the Premises or FTTP describes a deployment where a fibre cable runs from a BT exchange all the way to the end-user premise. This means that the entire connection is fibre optic based so services are extremely reliable, with speeds faster than FTTC and speeds are also not affected by distance from the local exchange. Currently FTTP is not widely available but Zen provides a range of FTTP services with a choice of download speeds of up to 38Mbps, 76Mbps, 100Mbps and a massive 330Mbps with prices from £23 per month excluding VAT.