The government has set out plans to install Fibre fully across the UK by 2025. Bringing fast broadband to rural areas, cities, business and homes. This is part of the PSTN and ISDN switch off, happening in 2025. Open reach (maintainers of the telephone and internet cables) and Ofcom have both stated that they will be switching off all PSTN and ISDN lines from that year onwards.
What is Fibre?
Fibre is the wire that connects from your house/ business to the exchange and provides you with internet and calls. It can transfer up to 1 gigabit of information per second and it’s more reliable, cheaper to maintain and operate. Meaning that you could download a whole HD movie in less then 50 seconds. With higher internet speeds means less time waiting and more productivity.
What needs to be done?
The Telecom industry wants to increase connectivity speeds and to do that, they need to install fibre connecting from the exchange to every house and business. Currently, nearly all telephone exchanges are connected with fibre, they just need to finish off the last 30 metres or so connecting the exchange to every house and business in towns and cities.
This cannot be done without the support of the government. A lot of the industry experts are saying the same thing, they need help to acquire 30,000 more engineers to cope with the extra workload in such a short amount of time, having access to land easily with the help of local councils and having more incentive to install the technology through larger government schemes and subsidies.
Is it possible?
Yes, Chancellor Sajid Javid has put aside £5 billion to invest in rural areas to bring fibre broadband to the hard to reach places; but with only 7% of the whole country currently connected to fibre, there is a lot more work for the telecom industry to do in just over 5 years, Openreach are hitting their target of 80,000 houses per month. Experts agree that more needs to be done from the government, however, they are offering a Gigabit Voucher Scheme for small and rural business to help them move from copper to full-fibre, this is expected to help and provide private companies with an incentive to offer their customers, but is this really enough? The government needs to go into hyper mode before the fibre train can really start moving.