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Fibernet - one of the handful of operators actively involved in local loop unbundling (LLU) in the UK - is to launch its range of hi-speed Internet services next week.

Initially, unbundled wholesale services will be available in Bristol, Warrington and Leeds with a further 27 exchanges being deployed between now and the beginning of next year.

Fibernet has also highlighted a further 191 exchanges up and down the country which it will roll-out depending on demand.

The 2Mbit/second symmetric DSL broadband Internet service - geared towards small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) with between 10 and 250 employees - is said to be highly competitive. According to Fibernet it costs less than a 64Kbps leased line from BT.

Said Nigel Pitcher, Fibernet's marketing director: "The higher service levels attainable with Fibernet's symmetric DSL, coupled with their extreme low cost, means that these premium services will now, for the first time, become affordable not only for larger corporates but also for small and medium sized businesses.

"The contribution this technology will make to 'Broadband Britain' is immense," he said.

Despite a huge effort, the UK has only unbundled around 150 unbundled lines.

Last week Fibernet reported increased turnover and profits at that Basingstoke-based company despite worsening economic conditions. ®

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