By: MarkJ - 18 October, 2011 (11:02 PM)
prices court london ukhyperoptic logo uk ispHyperoptic, a recently launched ISP (here) that focuses upon delivering affordable ultrafast fibre optic broadband ( FTTH ), TV ( IPTV ) and VoIP packages to large urban areas, has announced that the first installation of its 1Gbps (1000Mbps) capable service went live at Prices Court (Wandsworth) in London UK today.

Prices Court, a new riverside development, is home to 133 flats and has now become the first piece of the puzzle in Hyperoptic's somewhat grander ambition to deploy its service around further UK cities in 2012. The ISP has also started deployments in Battersea, Docklands, Holborn, Shepherds Bush, Vauxhall and Westminster.

Zair Berry, Director of Prices Court, said:

"We were struck by Hyperoptic’s innovative proposition and could immediately see the benefit a fibre network offers our residents. Firstly, it’s about improving quality of life in terms of having access to the best and fastest technologies rather than struggling with the frustrations of slow connectivity. No one else out there can offer us speeds of 1 Gig.

Secondly, we want to future-proof our development for existing and prospective tenants, adding the value fibre brings a property. While fibreoptic standards currently allow for 10Gbps bandwidths, this network can accommodate the Internet as it grows and matures."

Residential prices start at just £12.50 inc. VAT per month for a true 20Mbps broadband connection (Hyper-lite) and the top-end 1Gbps link (Hyper-sonic) will set you back £50. Whether or not anybody needs or could actually use the Hyper-sonic speeds is another question entirely.

The ISP is operated by two of the original founders from popular internet provider Be Broadband UK (Boris Ivanovic and Dana Pressman Tobak). Several other former BE staffers are also involved.

Boris Ivanovic, Hyperoptic's Chairman, said:

"Keeping customers at the heart of our offer is what Be was about and remains the driving force behind Hyperoptic. Right now, we’re listening to consumers and what they need – the UK has a long way to go before we begin to fully realise the benefits and change superfast broadband can bring to our lives. Today we’re at the start of that journey.

Speaking to customers in London, we’ve gauged that many areas of the city felt they’ve been excluded in the fibre conversation and were naturally frustrated by this. This makes Prices Court a perfect start for us and we’ll continue to focus our energies in the Capital over the coming months as we establish our brand and footprint."

Hyperoptic's team has a history of creating affordable and cutting edge internet access solutions (Be Broadband pulled off cheap 'up to' 24Mbps connectivity several years before its rivals), which makes it harder to question their economic model.

Still, their model remains extremely challenging, especially with its low entry-level price point and the high cost of building out Fibre-to-the-Home ( FTTH ) infrastructure. It's easy to see why they're focusing upon dense residential areas first as anywhere else would put the current model at risk, at least for now.

The ISP's press release also claims to be "the first broadband provider to make 1Gigabit download speeds happen in the UK", which isn't strictly true. Plenty of business providers can already deliver 1Gbps and even the CityFibre development in Bournemouth promises "boosts" of 1Gbps over a similar FTTH platform.

At the present time there's no need for 1Gbps (1000Mbps) connectivity in the Home and the vast majority of internet services couldn't even take advantage of it but then that's not the point. The fact that Hyperoptic claims to offer stable speeds of 20Mbps and 100Mbps is far more attractive; 1Gbps is just there for the future, when we need it. Not so long ago 0.5Mbps seemed "superfast".
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