Skip to main content

You'll have 50Mbps broadband by 2012

BT is considering installing fibre optic cabling - at a cost

By the time the London Olympics are held, you could be lapping up broadband speeds of up to 50Mbps. That's because BT is currently thinking through plans to adopt a cable fibre network that would significantly boost broadband speeds, BT top brass Sir Christopher Bland told the Financial Times late last week.

The technology in question is VDSL2 (Very High Speed Digital Subscriber Line 2) alongside a BT concept called FTTC , or Fibre To The Cabinet or Kerb. 'Cabinet' in this case means those little green boxes BT handily dots round on street corners. Some 85,000 of them exist, according to ThinkBroadband .

However, a major barrier to fibre adoption is the cost - estimated to be around the £4 billion mark. The problem is that for BT's shareholders there would be little comeback on the outlay for some time after installation. Unless, that is, VOD (video-on-demand) or services such as BT Vision start to convince consumers that they should be spending more to secure a high-bandwidth line into their homes.

From the cabinet to the home is where VDSL2 comes into its own as, like ADSL, it can use the existing copper-wire network up to a distance of 1km.


Dan (Twitter, Google+) is TechRadar's Former Deputy Editor and is now in charge at our sister site Covering all things computing, internet and mobile he's a seasoned regular at major tech shows such as CES, IFA and Mobile World Congress. Dan has also been a tech expert for many outlets including BBC Radio 4, 5Live and the World Service, The Sun and ITV News.