BT to increase pace of fibre rollout

21 Dec 2009

The UK’s fixed line incumbent BT is planning to speed up the rollout of its fibre-optic broadband network so that it is ready in time for the start of the Olympic Games in London in 2012. According to the Financial Times the telco, which had originally indicated it would complete the rollout by March 2013, now expects to finish work by June 2012. It is spending around GBP1.5 billion (USD2.42 billion) on the fibre infrastructure, which will reach approximately 40% of the UK’s households, providing speeds of up to 40Mbps. Ian Livingston, BT’s CEO, is also understood to have hinted that the new network could be expanded to increase its reach, although the telco is likely to look to the government for some form of subsidy in order for such expansion to take place; ‘We need our politicians to decide how much of a priority fibre broadband is. BT is the only company currently planning to invest large sums in this area but we can only go so far with our shareholders’ money,’ said Mr Livingston.

United Kingdom, BT Group (incl. Openreach)