Openreach speeds past 50% in full fibre broadband build

Peter Bayne

Reporter:

Peter Bayne

Email:

peter.bayne@newrydemocrat.com

If our experiences over recent months have taught us anything, it is that demand for online services is only going in one direction.

It will therefore be welcome news to many that Northern Ireland’s (NI) largest digital infrastructure provider, Openreach, has announced that more than 50% of homes and businesses in the region can now access ultra-reliable, ultrafast Full Fibre broadband on its network.

From smartphones to smart homes, broadband has become a crucial utility in our day-to-day lives and ultrafast Full Fibre broadband will provide faster connections and a more consistent and reliable service for decades to come.

Speaking about the announcement, Mairead Meyer, Director of Openreach in Northern Ireland, discusses how important ultrafast Full Fibre broadband will be for home workers, gamers, families, and everyone in between.

Mairead said: “Ultrafast Full Fibre broadband really is a game changer. It gives premises access to broadband at speeds of up to 1Gbps, meaning faster connections and a more consistent and reliable service. This will mean that everyone under one roof can be online at the same time, at any time - whether working, studying, or relaxing while watching the latest boxset.

“We’re seeing day in and day out, how important broadband has become to the lives of so many people in Northern Ireland. With more people continuing to work from home and recent research showing that as many 20% of households in the UK are now shopping for groceries online*, this is likely to continue as a trend. We only expect more and more people to adopt these behaviours and having reliable, fast broadband will be key for working, shopping, studying, and streaming.”

Reaching this significant milestone means that Openreach is well on its journey to upgrade its network and to bring ultrafast Full Fibre broadband to 525,000 premises in NI, which is over 60%, by the end of March 2021.

Mairead continued: “Despite our size, Northern Ireland always shines on the global stage and goes shoulder to shoulder with the best of them - this is certainly true for the progress that has been made to keep Northern Ireland at the forefront of digital technology. We’re very proud that our Full Fibre build programme has made the region the most digitally connected within the UK**. This is an incredible achievement.”

Openreach’s team of 750 engineers have now built ultrafast Full Fibre broadband to 420,000 homes and businesses located in NI. Building to over 3,500 premises every week, this means that every hour another 22 homes or businesses in the region can now access ultrafast Full Fibre broadband.

To see if you can upgrade to Full Fibre, check your postcode on openreach.co.uk/ni.

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