Home
 » ISP News » 
Sponsored

KC Boosts Fibre Optic Broadband Rollout to Reach 150,000 Premises

Thursday, March 24th, 2016 (8:34 am) - Score 569
kc uk hull fttp installation

The incumbent telecoms operator for Hull and East Yorkshire in England, KC (soon to become KCOM), has today announced another major boost to their on-going “Lightstream” fibre optic broadband (FTTP/C) roll-out, which will now aim to cover 150,000 premises by December 2017.

At present KC’s network deployment is still dominated by their “ultrafast” 1Gbps capable Fibre-to-the-Premises (FTTP/H) technology (note: residential packages currently go up to 250Mbps), although there is little bit of the slower hybrid-fibre Fibre-to-the-Cabinet (FTTC) technology in certain limited areas.

In terms of progress, the last update in November 2015 appeared to confirm that their fibre network had reached 55,000 premises (20,000 customers subscribed) and the goal back then was to expand this to 105,000 East Yorkshire premises by March 2017 (i.e. today’s news represents a +45,000 increase in premises passed, albeit alongside an extra 9 months of roll-out time).

The expanded deployment will mean that KC’s fibre broadband roll-out should soon reach “approximately three-quarters” of their total network footprint and the total capital investment required to achieve this is expected to hit £60 million (roughly £400 per premises).

Gary Young, KC’s Managing Director, said:

“We’re focused on improving services for our customers, which is why we’re investing many millions of pounds to make Hull the UK’s ultrafast broadband capital.

During the next phase of our deployment we’ll be focusing on taking our Lightstream service to areas of our network where speeds are slower than average because of the length of copper cable from customers’ homes and businesses to the telephone exchange.

Our ambition to make this region the best-connected in the UK will help local people make the most of the benefits of being online and help businesses to start up and grow, creating jobs and long-term prosperity.

We’re a successful national business but our roots remain firmly in this area and our commitment to Hull and East Yorkshire remains as strong as ever. Moving to a national brand means we can raise the profile of the region at the same time as promoting our business.”

Admittedly this will still leave a big chunk of KC’s network to be 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, although KC appears to be achieving a reasonably cost effective deployment.

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) and it should have no problems adapting to demand for the foreseeable future. Maintenance costs may also be lower.

By comparison BTOpenreach has preferred to focus on deploying slower speed ‘up to’ 80Mbps hybrid-fibre FTTC (VDSL) services across the United Kingdom, which as we’ve seen with G.fast will need future expensive upgrades in order to keep pace. The upside of FTTC is that it’s cheap and significantly quicker to deploy, so people do see the benefits far sooner.

Eventually we expect that KC / KCOM will work their way around to achieving 100% network coverage, although we wouldn’t be surprised if future announcements involved a greater mix of FTTC in order to reach some of the more remote communities. But for now FTTP is still king at KC.

Today it’s also stated that KCOM’s business operates five brands serving more than 170,000 customers across the UK and they’ve recently become debt free after the sale of their UK network assets to Cityfibre (excluding Hull and East Yorkshire) for £90m.

All of this begs another interesting question. In theory we could see KC achieving 100% fibre coverage by around 2020 and at that point they might well become the first major telecoms operator to consider whether or not it’s time to set a date for the withdrawal of their old copper line network (where possible it may become cheaper to focus on their pure fibre optic infrastructure).

Delicious
Add to Diigo
Tags: , , ,
Mark Jackson
By Mark Jackson
Mark is a professional technology writer, IT consultant and computer engineer from Dorset (England), he is also the founder of ISPreview since 1999 and enjoys analysing the latest telecoms and broadband developments. Find me on Twitter, , Facebook and Linkedin.
Leave a Comment
4 Responses
  1. MikeW

    55,000 premises reached in 4 years; 95,000 premises due in the next 2 years. Quite an acceleration.

  2. Interesting to see the capital costs mentioned. These are over 5 times the capital costs Openreach have incurred during their FTTC-heavy rollout.

    No reason why they can’t reach the coverage level they mentioned in that timescale. Just a question of getting enough subcontractors on the case.

    • Steve Jones

      It’s interesting that both Jersey and Hull have gone down this accelerated fibre route and both are effectively local monopolies where wholesale services aren’t really a significant issue. In both areas the relevant telco has full technical control of the network with a relatively light touch regulatory regime. I don’t think Sharon White is kept awake at night over KC, nor will she have the head of Sky or TalkTalk banging on her door about it.

    • MikeW

      Absolutely feasible timing, pouring contractors into one city.

      The cost to KC is indeed interesting. Essentially, it cost them their national network, sold to CityFibre.

      And I’m sure it tells Sharon something.

Comments RSS Feed

Javascript must be enabled to post (most browsers do this automatically)

Privacy Notice: Please note that news comments are anonymous, which means that we do NOT require you to enter any real personal details to post a message. By clicking to submit a post you agree to storing your comment content, display name, IP, email and / or website details in our database, for as long as the post remains live.

Only the submitted name and comment will be displayed in public, while the rest will be kept private (we will never share this outside of ISPreview, regardless of whether the data is real or fake). This comment system uses submitted IP, email and website address data to spot abuse and spammers. All data is transferred via an encrypted (https secure) session.

NOTE 1: Sometimes your comment might not appear immediately due to site cache (this is cleared every few hours) or it may be caught by automated moderation / anti-spam.

NOTE 2: Comments that break our rules, spam, troll or post via known fake IP/proxy servers may be blocked or removed.
Promotion
Cheapest Superfast ISPs
  • Hyperoptic £17.00 (*22.00)
    Avg. Speed 30Mbps, Unlimited
    Gift: Code: ONLINEDEAL
  • NOW TV £20.00 (*35.99)
    Avg. Speed 36Mbps, Unlimited
    Gift: None
  • TalkTalk £23.50
    Avg. Speed 35Mbps, Unlimited
    Gift: None
  • Plusnet £23.99 (*34.98)
    Avg. Speed 36Mbps, Unlimited
    Gift: None
  • Vodafone £24.00 (*27.00)
    Avg. Speed 35Mbps, Unlimited
    Gift: Gadget Worth £199.99
Prices inc. Line Rental | View All
Poll
*Javascript must be ON to vote*
The Top 20 Category Tags
  1. BT (2207)
  2. FTTP (1602)
  3. Broadband Delivery UK (1446)
  4. FTTC (1445)
  5. Openreach (1160)
  6. Politics (1153)
  7. Business (1041)
  8. Statistics (920)
  9. Fibre Optic (848)
  10. Mobile Broadband (830)
  11. Ofcom Regulation (770)
  12. Wireless Internet (761)
  13. FTTH (733)
  14. 4G (723)
  15. Virgin Media (708)
  16. Sky Broadband (527)
  17. TalkTalk (508)
  18. EE (470)
  19. Vodafone (361)
  20. Security (357)
New Forum Topics
Promotion
Helpful ISP Guides and Tips
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
Sponsored

Copyright © 1999 to Present - ISPreview.co.uk - All Rights Reserved - Terms  ,  Privacy and Cookie Policy  ,  Links  ,  Website Rules