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BT invites telcos to sign up to FTTP trials

Ultrafast broadband among product scrutiny tests ahead of full launch

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BT has kicked off a trial and pilot scheme to which rival ISPs can sign up. It will run until mid-June this year.

The national telco invited members of the next generation access (NGA) group to test out its "ultrafast" 330Mbit/s, 30Mbps upstream speed fibre-to-the-premises (FTTP) download product and the company's up to 80Mbps downstream, 20 Mbps upload speed FTTP tech.

It said that its subsequent pilot would "be based upon a sample size of between 100 to 150 orders (including those involved in the technical trial)."

The trials will only take place in six areas: Bradwell Abbey, Highams Park, Ilford Central, Leytonstone, York and Wembley.

As of 21 May, the pilot will be extended to those parts of UK that Openreach has already upgraded to FTTP. BT is expecting to "pass" around 2.5 million premises with that technology by 2014 as part of its £2.5bn investment in its cabling infrastructure.

Its fibre-to-the-cabinet product is much more prevalent throughout the land, however.

BT said that during the pilot it would be looking to:

  • Continue [to] monitor the behaviour of the network;
  • Confirm [that] operational process changes and internal communications have not been adversely impacted by the change; and
  • Gather evidence from communications providers on end user experience.

By 11 June the company will begin charging telcos that wish to continue to use the service on a wholesale basis. ®

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