Fujitsu has announced that it is to create a superfast broadband network for rural areas in the UK. Duncan Tait chief executive of Fujitsu, claims it will, “breathe new life in to rural communities”. This service will hope to rival BT’s market dominance. Already Virgin Media and TalkTalk have expressed willingness to provide internet services via the network and it will also be opened for use by local authorities.
Fujitsu is asking for £500m from the government to help fund the project, with most of the system using currently present BT infrastructure of underground ducting and phone poles. However the network is not a certainty, according to the managing director of network solutions at Fujitsu, “Without [the funding] the network will not be built”. Nevertheless this isn’t the only factor that affects the likelihood of the creation of the network. According to Fujitsu creation of the network relies on OFCOM forcing BT Openreach to provide access to its infrastructure on, “fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory terms”.
What is interesting about Fujitsu’s proposed network, is that it will offer fiber to the home (FTTH) service, that will be able to bring potentially 1Gbps speeds, much faster than BT’s superfast network which uses a hybrid solution known as fiber to the cabinet (FTTC) only capable of speeds of around 40Mbps. Effectively offering a future-proof technology that will be effective for a much longer timescale.
The government’s communication minister Ed Vaizey applauded the planned network and Virgin Media’s chief executive Neil Berkett echoed this as: “a once in a lifetime opportunity to make the ambition of a digitally enabled society a reality beyond the country’s cities and towns“.
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