Superfast Cymru, Wales’ ambitious fibre broadband plan, has announced that it aims to have 100,000 properties connected by 2014.
The project, undertaken by BT, has already seen 57 towns and rural communities connected to FTTC (Fibre to the Cabinet) and FTTP (Fibre to the Premises) broadband, providing top speeds of 80Mbps and 330Mbps respectively.
Last year, the Welsh government signed a contract with BT aiming to bring fibre-based broadband to 96 per cent of the country by 2015. Since the goalposts on BDUK (Broadband Delivery for the UK) have been shifted, the original target date for Superfast Cymru also seems to have slipped back.
Read Recombu Digital’s guides to Welsh Broadband and BDUK Ken Skates, deputy minister for skills and technology, said: “Since we launched Superfast Cymru a huge amount of planning and engineering work has taken place to connect our homes and businesses. Clearly, there is still a long way to go before we reach our 2016 target, but I’m delighted to hear that companies are already reporting improvements in their connectivity.”
As well as setting a target of 100,000, Superfast Cymru has also revealed 63 communities that are scheduled to go live by the end of Spring 2014. This will bring the total number of Welsh premises able to get superfast broadband to 230,000.
Liv Garfield, chief executive of Openreach, added: “This project is already enabling businesses in rural as well as urban communities in Wales to grow and compete on a level playing field with competitors anywhere in the world and providing a myriad of opportunities for families to explore new horizons and applications that will enrich their lives.
Bangor was the first Welsh community to go live in February and other communities in North West Wales, including Caernarfon, Menai Bridge, Porthmadog and Pwllheli followed suit, along with that famous place with the long name. Superfast Cymru’s efforts will mainly be focussed on rural parts of Wales as BT connects the more urban, more commercially viable parts of the country under its own £2.5 billion programme.
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