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KC Detail Fibre Optic Broadband Rollout for 5,000 East Hull Premises

Thursday, November 12th, 2015 (8:23 am) - Score 783

The incumbent East Yorkshire (England) telecoms operator, KC, has confirmed that 5,000 homes and businesses in East Hull have just been added to their on-going “Lightstream” fibre optic broadband (FTTP/C) roll-out project, which aims to reach more than 105,000 premises passed by March 2017.

At present KC’s network deployment is still dominated by their “ultrafast” 350Mbps capable Fibre-to-the-Premises (FTTP/H) technology (note: residential packages currently go to 250Mbps), although there will be a little of the slower hybrid-fibre Fibre-to-the-Cabinet (FTTC) technology in certain limited areas.

Back in March 2015 we reported that KC had expanded their new broadband network to 45,000 premises and the latest figures suggest that they’ve now reached 55,000. Previously we’ve been told that subscriber uptake was running at 30% (40% for businesses) and the latest news is that 20,000 have now taken the Lightstream service (36%), which is impressive.

The good news is that KC has just updated the roll-out plan on their website to confirm the next batch of upgrades for their on-going deployment, which will benefit 5,000 extra premises in East Hull. The key focus areas include: Holderness Road, New Bridge Road, Garden Village, Westcott Street, Lee Street and Summergangs Road.

Despite this progress KC has still faced occasional criticism because much of their network remains stuck on significantly older and slower ADSL based broadband services. Naturally the downside of deploying a pure ultrafast fibre optic network is that it costs a lot of money and takes a lot of time.

The upside of FTTP is of course that once you’ve completed the work then your network can deliver ultra-fast speeds (i.e. the limit becomes data capacity rather than physical infrastructure), should have no problems adapting to demand for the foreseeable future and maintenance costs may also be lower.

By comparison BTOpenreach has chosen to focus on deploying slower speed hybrid-fibre FTTC (VDSL) services across the United Kingdom, which as we’ve seen with G.fast will need expensive future upgrades in order to keep pace. But the upside of FTTC is that it’s cheap and significantly quicker to deploy, so people do see the benefits far sooner.. at least until they need another upgrade.

As it stands KC’s current FTTP dominated deployment expects to reach around 60% of local homes by the end of 2016 and we wouldn’t be at all surprised to see another upgrade plan unveiled before the current target of 105,000 premises is achieved.

In terms of pricing, packages start at £36.99 per month (includes a phone service) for a 50Mbps service with a 70GB usage allowance and go up to £69.99 if you want a 250Mbps connection with unlimited usage and unlimited local calls. Sadly the most expensive package is the only “unlimited” data option that KC offers.

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By Mark Jackson
Mark is a professional technology writer, IT consultant and computer engineer from Dorset (England), he also founded ISPreview in 1999 and enjoys analysing the latest telecoms and broadband developments. Find me on Twitter, , Facebook and Linkedin.
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