BT to Test Fiber to the Home in Multifamily Housing

  • FTTH
  • MDUs
LONDON - British incumbent telco BT, which is rolling out fiber to the curb and fiber to the premises throughout much of the U.K., is inviting residents and landlords of apartment buildings to participate in a fiber-to-the-unit pilot project. Like many other deployers, BT started its FTTH rollout in greenfield builds and suburban developments; it is now beginning to tackle older apartment buildings, which can present a wide variety of challenges.

In addition to the many technical complexities posed by older buildings, identifying the appropriate individuals and companies to formally grant permission can be problematic. BT's strategy of allowing both residents and landlords to register interest is designed to allow residents to demonstrate demand and landlords to cooperate in making their buildings more attractive to future potential residents.

BT's last-mile subsidiary, Openreach, is looking for about 1,000 buildings to take part in the pilot. Buildings must be located within its existing fiber footprint and will be chosen according to a combination of resident demand, landlord cooperation and the economics of deployment. Technology and network topography factors will also be taken into account.

Participants will initially have access to downstream speeds of up to 100 Mbps, which will be increased to 300 Mbps by the spring. Upstream speeds haven't been identified, but BT says they will be the fastest in the U.K.


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