G.fast is the key to unlocking ultrafast speeds for millions of people across the UK in the next few years. [G.fast is] a key part of moving the UK from superfast to ultrafast broadband speeds as quickly and efficiently as possible.”Peter Bell
G.fast – A recap
G.fast is one of two ultrafast technologies that are being rolled out by Openreach, with the other being Fibre to the Premises (FTTP). However, whereas FTTP requires fibre to be installed into the premises, G.fast uses existing copper phone lines and can therefore can be done quickly and cheaply. Openreach aim to make ultrafast available to 12 millions homes by 2020, 10 million of this will be using G.fast and the remainder will be FTTP.
In August they added another 26 locations to their rollout programme, including Brighton & Hove, Liverpool Central and Manchester East. Openreach started trialling G.fast in 2015 and almost three years on, it looks like the commercial rollout is around the corner.
G.fast – Who can order it?
G.fast requires a change to an Openreach street cabinet, so once this is done, G.fast should be available to the properties served by that cabinet. However, Openreach have had successes, but also G.fast failures, especially when it comes to properties further than 100 metres from the cabinet.
Your best bet would be to check the BT Broadband Checker and then contact us if you need more information. We deliver G.fast for businesses and will be able to answer any question you have. It can either be used as a primary circuit or failover and we have a range of routers that can be used with the product. Best of all for your business, we will monitor your network from our office to make sure it performs as expected.
G.fast – Now and next
Interestingly, whilst there isn’t already a national rollout of the product, there are companies pushing the boundaries to see just how fast G.fast can go. On the 24th October, Israel-based Sckipio demonstrated over 3.1Gbps of download speed (900Mbps upload) on production silicon using G.fast bonding at 212MHz. But whilst Openreach claim to be leading the way with the a rollout plan, other countries are also getting involved.
On the same day as the Sckipio test, ZDNet announced that Australia’s National Broadband Network (NBN) will be launching G.fast technology across its FttX networks in 2018, with the upgrade potentially allowing speeds of up to 1Gbps across the 106MHz or 212MHz frequencies. This gives you an example of how quickly things are moving.
In July 2017, Germany began lab testing of the latest innovations in the G.fast standard, 212MHz and coordinated dynamic time allocation (cDTA) together with Deutsche Telekom. Swisscom has moved even faster by claiming to have beaten Openreach to the punch, having provided G.fast to over 1000 customers back in October 2016. Over the other side of the pond, AT&T is planning to spread its 5G technology trials to three new cities by the end of 2017 whilst also pursuing G.fast as part of their offering.
Peter Bell, CIO for Openreach discusses how they are re-using its existing DSL installed footprint to deliver new high-speed access and services to its customers using Nokia’s G.fast technology.