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UK independent networks praised for positive approach to fibre rollout

Paul Lipscombe
April 24, 2020

1.4 million additional homes were connected by fibre broadband between September 2018 and September 2019

The UK has been revealed as one of Europe’s five fastest growing markets for fibre rollout.

That is according to The Independent Networks Cooperative Association (INCA), who has praised the UK’s independent network sector for its improvements around FTTH (fibre-to-the-home).

It comes as the FTTH/B Panorama report by the FTTH Council Europe revealed that there was an increase of 50 per cent in homes covered by fibre up to September 2019, as 1.4 million additional homes were connected.

The UK has also jumped two places to 27th in the annual FTTH/B Panorama table.

INCA CEO Malcolm Corbett said: “To have made such progression over the space of a year – after only a year after the UK’s first appearance on the table – is encouraging.

“This is a result of positive policy environment, investment appetite and the capabilities of the UK’s digital infrastructure sector. It also highlights that the UK is playing a real role in the wider progression of fibre deployments in Europe as uptake across the continent increases.”

The report by the FTTH Council Europe found that nearly 172 million homes across Europe have benefited from the fibre rollout.

The annual report is a pan-European campaign for the adoption of pure fibre optic-based Fibre-to-the-Home style ultrafast broadband technologies.

Only Belgium, Ireland and Switzerland experienced faster growth year-on-year than the UK for homes passed.

However the UK does lag well behind in the rankings for penetration rates of European countries when it comes to FTTH/B subscriptions, with a score of just 2.8 per cent compared to first-placed Iceland’s 65.9 per cent.

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