Superfast broadband is now available to 75,000 homes and businesses across Surrey.
Thanks to the Superfast Surrey joint venture between BT and Surrey County Council, services theoretically capable of delivering download speeds of up to 80Mbps can be ordered by customers close to BT’s street cabinets.
The majority of connections set up under the project are FTTC (Fibre to the Cabinet)-based which deliver top speeds of 80Mbps – although the actual speed you’ll get depends greatly on your location.
A smaller of properties covered by Superfast Surrey will be able to order faster FTTP (Fibre to the Premises) services which provide top download speeds of 330Mbps. Unlike FTTC lines, speeds aren’t affected by your location. Neither BT or the local authority are breaking down what percentage of properties will be able to get which service.
The announcement from BT comes as the 500th cabinet – one of seven connected to the Oxshott exchange in Surrey – is now live.
Bill Murphy, managing director of next generation access at BT, said: “This is excellent news for the residents of Oxshott and surrounding communities and another important milestone for the Superfast Surrey partnership which continues to make real progress.”
According to exchange mapping service SamKnows, orders for FTTC broadband can be placed at properties connected to the seven cabinets, but no FTTP lines are available.
Whatever type of connection is available, BT insists that the faster speeds will allow firms and families across Surrey to work from home, run more applications and enjoy more online content.
By the time the project ends, 84,000 properties – equivalent to 99 per cent of Surrey – should be able to get superfast broadband from BT and other ISPs using the Openreach network.
Superfast Surrey has so far cost £35.2 million to get running. The local authority is contributing the lion’s share (£20 million) while BT has coughed up £13.9 million of its own cash. The remaining £1.3 million has come from the UK Government’s BDUK (Broadband Delivery for the UK) fund.
BDUK criteria stipulates that everyone covered by the ‘superfast’ portion of the project should be able to access download speeds of at least 25Mbps. Those in the remaining 1 per cent should be able to access a basic service delivering speeds of 2Mbps at all times, although Surrey council suggests that extra work could continue after the project’s end of 2014 deadline. How much more money it would take to cover that last 1 per cent isn’t known.