Vodafone UK has announced plans to extend the reach of its ‘Gigafast Broadband’ service via a new commercial deal with network infrastructure provider Openreach. In a press release regarding the development, Vodafone confirmed that from spring 2020 it will begin making its fibre-based broadband offering available to customers in Birmingham, Bristol and Liverpool via Openreach’s fibre-to-the-premises (FTTP) network. Looking ahead, it added that service area will continue to grow as Openreach expands its footprint. As such, it expects coverage to be available to around 500,000 premises in the aforementioned locations by mid-2021 – under the first phase of the strategic agreement with Openreach. Vodafone also confirmed the agreement includes the option for further phases that could extend coverage to other places.
With the addition of Birmingham, Bristol and Liverpool, Vodafone noted that its Gigafast Broadband is currently live or planned in a total of 15 cities or towns across the UK, having previously announced twelve other locations for a fibre rollout under its complementary agreement with CityFibre. To date, Vodafone Gigafast Broadband has already been made available on a commercial basis in Aberdeen, Bournemouth, Coventry, Huddersfield, Milton Keynes, Peterborough and Stirling.
Vodafone UK CEO Nick Jeffery said of the latest development: ‘Vodafone is committed to a full fibre future and to creating the infrastructure Britain needs to compete and win in the digital era. This initiative with Openreach builds on our existing commitments with CityFibre and underlines our belief in the power of digital technology to connect people for a better future and unlock economic growth for the UK.’ Meanwhile, Openreach chief executive Clive Selley added: ‘Our full fibre broadband network already covers more than 1.9 million premises in the UK, and Openreach engineers are building it to another home or business every 26 seconds. We’re keen to upgrade customers as quickly as possible to this new, ultrafast, future-proof platform, so we’re proud that Vodafone’s placing its confidence in Openreach to deliver a great broadband experience for their customers.’