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BT earmarks super-speedy 300Mbit/s broadband for 50 exchanges

Fibre munchers, arise!

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BT is planning to offer a 300Mbit/s Fibre-to-the-Premises (FTTP) broadband service to 50 exchanges by the end of this year.

The national telco has not said which exchange areas will get the FTTP service, which will cost subscribers £50 a month.

The telecoms giant claimed it would be punting the fastest download speeds of all major ISPs. The Infinity product will push upstream speeds of 20Mbps, BT said.

Far fewer BT exchanges are being equipped with FTTP than with Fibre-to-the-Cabinet (FTTC) tech.

BT has invested £2.5bn to deploy FTTP and FTTC to about 65 per cent of properties in the UK. But many more will get fibre via shared cabinets rather than blown directly into their homes or businesses.

The national telco has previously said that the split was roughly 25 per cent FTTP and 75 per cent FTTC, which involves BT Openreach engineers laying fibre from the exchange to a street-side junction box. That service is then carried into homes and businesses via a copper phone line.

BT said it would offer 300Mbit/s downstream speeds to its existing FTTP subscribers who want to upgrade to the "unlimited" package, which comes with a monthly £50 price tag.

The company claimed that the product would not be subject to "usage limits and is free from traffic management".

The telco originally promised more than two years ago that it would use the FTTP tech to deliver downstream speeds of up to 300Mbit/s from April 2012.

Separately, BT said it was planning to launch a new broadband and 802.11ac Wi-Fi router with all of its Infinity packages. The telco added that it will include an integrated VDSL modem in the product so that customers would only need one box at home.

All new customers will be offered the router, dubbed Home Hub 5, once it launches later this year.

"Existing Infinity customers will be able to recontract to get a Home Hub 5 for free or will be able to buy one for a small fee," BT said. ®

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