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ISP I Need Broadband Start Build of Own UK Full Fibre Network

Friday, July 9th, 2021 (8:38 am) - Score 3,312
I Need Broadband FTTP Splitter

The unusually named UK ISP I Need Broadband (INB) has just become the latest provider to start building their own gigabit-capable Fibre-to-the-Premises (FTTP) network, with their first projects reaching hundreds of homes and businesses across parts of North Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire (England).

The provider has been around in the market for quite a few years, although until now they’ve mostly tended to focus on the deployment of Fixed Wireless Access (FWA) infrastructure and have also sold some “full fibre” services via networks managed or built by ITS Technology, as well as FTTC/P via Openreach.

However, INB have now decided to try their hands at building their own FTTP infrastructure. At the same time, some of their engineers have also been approved by Openreach to run their own fibre through the operators’ existing cable ducts (Physical Infrastructure Access), which will help to reduce the amount of disruptive civil engineering involved.

One of the very first locations to benefit from this build is the Larwood Park Estate in Kirkby, North Nottinghamshire, which has seen INB deploying their own FTTP to cover 250 homes. Most of this build, which started several months ago, is now complete and the first beta customers have already gone live.

The ISP has also informed ISPreview.co.uk that there are a further 7 estates on their rollout plan for this year in the same region (spread across the Nottingham, Mansfield and Derby areas). As part of that they’ve just started a new 6km spine run to a new area, which should pass over 2000 homes, schools and businesses, and will feed another 3 housing estates covering over 400 homes.

Adrian Robinson, I Need Broadband, told ISPreview.co.uk:

“In Nottingham City centre we have multiple pops that we plan to deploy our fibre from, these include the city centre, and the North east of city. The network is both GPON mainly for the homes and contended service for small business, with full active and dark fibre options for business, councils and cctv transport.”

The provider’s initial deployments have so far been self-funded by their own internal private investment, although they’ve recently managed to secure an addition £1 million from a local businessman in order to help fuel their future expansion.

Residential customers can expect to pay from £29.99 per month (12-month term) for a maximum symmetric speed 100Mbps service on their related I-fibre-home packages (inc. wireless router and £99.99 one-off for installation), which rises to £59.99 for their top 500Mbps tier. We should point out that the listed “average” speeds for both of those packages is quite low, at 50Mbps and 200Mbps respectively.

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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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8 Responses
  1. A says:

    If £29.99 for 100mbps and £59.99 for 500mbps isn’t bad enough then 50mbps and 200mbps average respectively is. If another provider moves in the area (looking online that estate is ADSL only) then I Need Broadband will really need to fix their pricing.

    1. NE555 says:

      Probably the “average speed” figure is because they don’t have any customers yet and no real-world measurements, so they’re being conservative.

      £30 for symmetric 100/100 is quite a reasonable price. BT charge £29 for 55/10 or £31-£33 for 80/20 (Fibre 1 / Fibre 2), although with only £10 setup fee.

    2. A says:

      @NE555 the £29.99 tier isn’t too bad though its worth remembering that TalkTalk offer 145mbps at this price. The £59.99 is pretty bad though, TalkTalk offer it for £40, BT sometimes offer it for £50, Virgin for £45ish and Sky soon for £45ish.

      Openreach already have the ducts/poles in that area so they will likely build FTTP within a few years which will undercut I Need Broadband massively.

      Not sure about the average, going for halve the max is being very conservative.

  2. yeehaa says:

    Is there a behind closed doors competition amongst new alt networks to come up with the most ludicrous name for their company?

    1. A says:

      We’ve already had ‘No One’, at least I Need Broadband can be shortened to INB though it will be terrible for search engine results.

  3. Stephen Johnson says:

    Hi Mark,

    I dont quite get the business model of all these small alt networks, is the plan to run them for decades even after overbuilding by BT or do they plan to sell out to someone who can consolidate all their efforts?

    Would love to know what you think.
    Thanks

    1. Mark Jackson says:

      The goal of any commercial business is usually to make money, so if they can build a network based on a reasonable expectation of future payback (often 10-15 years down the line), then they’ll do it. The challenge will be in whether those forecasts and models hold, which will partly depend upon how much competition they face.

      Certainly, further down the line, some larger altnets operators may also see greater value in acquiring an existing FTTP network than overbuilding one in the same area. Consolidation within this market is inevitable, but that’s not to say that smaller players can’t survive on their own. The government’s voucher schemes will also help some of these smaller fish to establish themselves with greater financial stability.

      In the case of ‘I Need Broadband’ they will also have an existing base of customers, which are no doubt ready for migration and that helps the model.

  4. Stephen Johnson says:

    Thanks for your detailed response Mark, much appreciated.

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