CityFibre adds new towns and ISPs for 2021
The UK altnet provider has broken ground on a full fibre network project in Reading, which will make the Berkshire town the best connected in the country.
The digital transformation will reach nearly every business and home locally thanks to a £58m investment. Unlike existing fibre networks, CityFibre’s full fibre rollout is ‘capacity rich and fit for the future’ according to the provider.
According to research from Regeneris, full fibre will have a huge impact on the town over the next 15 years. Up to £85m could be added to the value of local homes as a result of high speed network availability. And Smart City initiatives could add a further £67m to the local economy.
In addition, startups could add a further £33m in growth as enhanced connectivity makes it easier to get new businesses up and running. An £85m uptick in business innovation and productivity is also expected as a result of the full fibre rollout.
Construction work has already begun in the Norcot and Battle area with Instalcom using modern construction techniques to speed up the installation. This is designed to minimise disruption leading to a fast and successful rollout.
Increasing range of ISPs
CityFibre stressed that the new service will be delivered by a range of ISPs, citing Giganet who are already partnered with the firm on their Portsmouth, Plymouth, Crawley, Swindon and Horsham projects.
Giganet positions itself as the fast way to access 1 Gbps broadband and has already lured customers away from leading providers like Virgin Media, which has already announced price rises in 2021. CityFibre has also partnered with Quickline, a superfast broadband provider focused on Lincolnshire and Yorkshire, which will start providing services through CityFibre’s northern infrastructure later this year.
Quickline’s commercial director Nick Thompson said the partnership would allow the ISP to expand into new markets, with CityFibre active across 67 towns and cities this year. CityFibre’s Rob Hamlin said that partnering with more ISPs would allow the company to reach its target of reaching eight million premises by 2025.
Work has already started in Medway, Barnsley and Nottingham as well as the project in Reading.
Stacey King, manager of the Reading project for CityFibre, said the investment had come at just the right time for Reading’s forward thinking business community, allowing them to drive productivity and innovation supported with lightning fast connection speeds. Those same speeds will also have a range of benefits for households, allowing people to work and learn from home with ease and enabling smart home technology.
Cllr Jason Brock, Leader at Reading Borough Council, welcomed the investment from CityFibre. Brock said the borough council was working closely with the private sector to deliver economic growth and praised CityFibre for recognising the town’s economic resilience.
Once live, the new network will available through ISPs including Giganet. Although fibre-to-the-premises (FTTP) is currently only available to 20% of homes in the UK its speed, reliability and near unlimited bandwidth make it the holy grail when it comes to fast internet connections, easily capable of Gigabit speeds that benefit everything from business creativity to home entertainment.