BT uses ‘fibre to the basement’ broadband deployments for inner city speed boosts

Speeds of 80Mbps offered to homes and businesses in the City of London for the first time as BT has announced the successful trial of a new form of fibre broadband deployment that could solve the problems involved in getting faster services to inner city areas.

This is owing to the problems presented by deployments in inner city areas, as Openreach CEO Joe Garner explained. “City-centre locations present unique challenges when it comes to upgrading consumer broadband,” he said. “For example, there is less room for us to install a fibre cabinet on the pavement, and it is often harder to get permission to close roads to do the work. We also need to secure permission from multiple landlords to run new cables across their land and properties.”

However, BT has trialled a new system called ‘fibre to the basement’ that directly integrates fibre broadband kit into the basement of a building, rather than requiring access to street furniture.

BT has used this method to boost services to 225 homes in the Middlesex Street Estate and around 50 SMEs based at 65 London Wall. This will bring speeds of 80Mbps, compared with previous speeds of up to 20Mbps.

Garner said that this could prove a viable solution to the problems that have hindered such rollouts. “We are optimistic that this new solution will prove that fibre broadband can be installed into building basements quickly, smoothly and economically,” he said. It could also have the added benefit of being less disruptive for our customers and the general public”.

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