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1,000 exchanges get go-ahead for broadband

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BT has published a timetable detailing when more than a thousand exchanges will be upgraded to DSL broadband.

From the Autumn until summer next year, around 100 exchanges a month will be converted to handle broadband helping to bring the UK "significantly closer to universal availability".

Once the work is completed, almost one million extra homes in the UK will be hooked up to a DSL-enabled exchange while extending coverage to 99.6 per cent of the UK.

Even though BT has spent more than £1bn so far on upgrading its broadband network, around 560 telephone exchanges serving around 100,000 homes will still be without broadband even when this work is completed. With some of these exchanges serving as few as seven homes, BT says that wiring-up these would simply not make commercial sense. It is looking at other ways - such as wireless or satellite - to bring broadband to these areas.

Separately, BT also announced that the initial results from trials to extend the reach of broadband beyond its current limit (roughly 6km) are looking "very promising". The telco didn't give away any other details but remains "confident" that it will find a way over the summer to "extend the reach of broadband ADSL services to over a million more homes and businesses throughout the UK". ®

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