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LightSpeed Broadband Expand UK FTTP Cover and Launch 2Gbps UPDATE

Wednesday, Jun 19th, 2024 (12:37 pm) - Score 3,400
LightSpeed-Broadband-Fibre-Tray

Alternative network operator and ISP LightSpeed Broadband, which was last year acquired by Kompass Kapital (here) after suffering job cuts and a build slowdown in the East of England (here), has today relaunched itself with a new 2Gbps full fibre package, branding, home security solution and network expansion plans.

The operator currently claims to have already expanded their gigabit-capable broadband network to cover 250,000 premises in the East of England and West Midlands (unchanged from May 2024) – reflecting builds across parts of 32 market towns in South Lincolnshire, Norfolk, Suffolk, Essex, Cambridgeshire and Rutland. But they also previously held an aspiration toward reaching 1 million homes in the future.

Lightspeed has now announced that, over the next 3 years (i.e. by 2027), they will aim to extend their full fibre network to cover “more than 150,000 new premises” across 21 new towns (i.e. a total of 400,000 premises passed), while also adding 38,000 residential customers and serving 47 total towns, including 6,000 businesses. This is being supported by fresh funding from Kompass Kapital.

On top of this, the provider has today introduced a new 2Gbps symmetric broadband package, which costs £64.99 per month on a 24-month term (their cheapest residential plan starts at just £24.99 for 150Mbps). In addition, customers will still have access to the provider’s Digital Voice range with home phone line company KIT.

Brett Shepherd, LightSpeed CEO, said:

“Our development of the LightSpeed brand this year is a game changer for our existing and future customers. Symmetrical upload and download speeds of up to 2,000Mbps, alongside an expanded offering and coverage area, means there’s never been a better time to join our growing family of satisfied customers.

We now cover more than 250,000 homes and businesses across the East of England and West Midlands, with plans to expand to more than 400,000 by 2027.

Broadband is just the beginning; we’re immediately offering LightSpeed customers the option of top-of-the-range home security systems. Houses with ultra-fast broadband are future-proofed, and security is a crucial consideration for a comfortable, happy home.

And that’s just the start. Our ambition is to become a one-stop shop, simplifying the management of all household digital services in one convenient place.”

Finally, LightSpeed has rounded off a busy re-launch by introducing some new Home Security bundles – in partnership with SimpliSafe (they have more plans to expand this offering in the coming months). Three systems will be on offer with the SimpliSafe range and we’ve summarised them all below.

· The Starter is SimpliSafe’s introductory system – earning Best Buy status from Which? – including an entry sensor, motion sensor and wired HD indoor camera, controlled via a keypad sensor and managed by a base station with backup battery.

· The Tower with all the features of the Starter package, an extra entry sensor and a wired HD outdoor camera to monitor visitors (whether welcome or not!), plus a complimentary SimpliSafe bell box deterrent with flashing light and 105db siren, which activates if a sensor is triggered

· The Edinburgh – SimpliSafe’s premium system – including all the above features, plus two key fobs, an extra motion sensor and entry sensor, a temperature sensor (warning of freezing pipes) and water sensor (detecting leaks)

Overall, this sounds like LightSpeed Broadband has been reinvigorated by their recent investment boost and are thus returning to a more positive build trajectory. But we still don’t know precisely which new towns they’ll be covering, while the wider economic challenges of the current market may continue to put pressure on their efforts, just as it does for all operators.

UPDATE 1:13pm

The first 11 of the 21 new “fully funded” town expansions have been confirmed to include the following locations:

  • Blythe Bridge (including Stallington, Meir Park and Forsbrook) 
  • Endon Stockton Brook and Stanley 
  • Brown Edge 
  • Kidsgrove & Scholar Green 
  • Tamworth 
  • Knutsford 
  • Werrington 
  • Oakham 
  • Manningtree 
  • Cromer & Sheringham 
  • Knutsford
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Mark-Jackson
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 X (Twitter), Mastodon, Facebook and .
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Comments
21 Responses
  1. Avatar photo James says:

    When I asked them two weeks ago they said that 2Gbps is not in sight as majority customers use no more than 100mbps. This was with sales manager. And now this..

    I realy hope that YouFibre comes in and gives these guys some competition. Spalding only has LS just for the ref.

    1. Avatar photo Phil says:

      This isn’t true, Netomnia via YouFibre are also live in Spalding.

    2. Avatar photo John says:

      Spalding has Netomnia and Upp

  2. Avatar photo GNewton says:

    Some of the so-called new town expansions aren’t exactly new.

    For example, places like Manningtree, Cromer, or Sheringham have been in their planned list of towns for over 2 years now, see e.g. the rollout map at https://www.ispreview.co.uk/index.php/2023/04/job-losses-strike-uk-full-fibre-isp-lightspeed-broadband-as-build-slows.html .

    Also, Lightspeed pretty much lost to competitors in Manningtree, which is now mainly served by Gigaclear, and the newly built estates there are served by OFNL or Hyperoptic.

    And rolling out years too late in places like Braintree will certainly be a loss-making exercise because that town is already served by multiple other fibre providers. The same was true with their recent Clacton rollout.

    They’ll have to focus on areas which aren’t yet served by fibre providers, and have to do the rollouts quickly.

    1. Avatar photo Fastman says:

      openreach is also now doing clacton and frinton

    2. Avatar photo Matthew Kerridge says:

      Well I welcome their rollout to Manningtree after Gigaclear descoped me from there build.
      Openreach also planning to build by 2026 so will be interesting to see when they kick things off.

    3. Avatar photo GNewton says:

      Openreach has barely any coverage in Frinton, unlike Lightspeed, see e.g. https://labs.thinkbroadband.com/local/index.php?tab=2&election=1#14/51.8256/1.2573/geafttp/lightspeed/

  3. Avatar photo David says:

    Is there two wonderful Knutsfords?
    But good news for parts of Staffordshire and Cheshire.

  4. Avatar photo Fastman says:

    manningtree was in a previous release

    most of the north essex towns will probably get also covered by Openreach
    in my neck of the woods (north Essex) — Lightspeed has done some PIA and some premises with ducts (not gone anywhere difficult and Hard (DIG) and there are hundreds of pole brackets with no terminals on which have been there since late spring 2022

  5. Avatar photo James says:

    So much money invested also. And only 19k customers so far. Smells fishy just like other altnets.

    1. Avatar photo Josh says:

      Mate, they have 8k customers and that is accurate figure! Who would like to use their services if they have only one peering with Arelion? Check https://bgp.he.net/AS210892 they have presence in Linx IX but they are not utilising it! They are bunch of cowboys pretending ISP!

    2. Avatar photo NoFibreHere says:

      Fishy only just scratches the surface. They still have plenty of fibre hanging off poles all along the east coast and show no signs of actually progressing

    3. Avatar photo NE555 says:

      > Who would like to use their services if they have only one peering with Arelion?

      They have outsourced all their peering to an upstream major transit ISP. What’s the problem with that? The traffic will still find its way through all Arelion’s peers.

      Better to have a large and clueful upstream, than to manage BGP poorly. Especially if you are a tiny ISP with <20K users.

      Presumably they have redundant links to Arelion (you can't see this from HE's BGP looking glass)

    4. Avatar photo BC547 says:

      To NE555:

      Arelion is very problematic after their lost direct peering with Tata Communication in Europe and for now they exchange all traffic with Tata in US, which is causing a lot of routing issues. Also, they charge for transit, with local IX you have only to pay for a port in IX, transit between members if free of charge, and they are next hop to you.

      Example, Lightspeed customers using Netflix services from Sweden servers over Arelion rather than local ones in UK. That is only one example, and I can list many more problems which I have found using Lightspeed connection, very high latency to major Data Centres in Europe (above 100ms) even in UK. I am glad I have resigned and moved my connection to YouFibre, at least I have low latency and stable connection, and no one is feeding me anymore with lies that problem is at my end.

    5. Avatar photo XGS says:

      Josh. They are paying Arelion for transit.

      Peering is exchange of internally sourced data between two networks. Transit is using a network to reach others. The HE website uses ‘peer’ in a specific context, BGP peer, at least one session over TCP port 179 speaking Border Gateway Protocol between the two ASNs. It has no idea how many connections there actually are between the two and doesn’t discriminate between wider transit and peering.

      It isn’t uncommon in the wider world for ISPs to have a couple of transit providers and that’s it. We’re blessed in Europe in having so much settlement-free peering we take it for granted. It doesn’t mean a network is bad. These folks would have to use a third party network to get to London anyway and with their scale it might make more sense to use hot potato routing than to pay someone to get their data to London then someone else to take it to other ASNs.

      The LINX port may be relatively newly purchased and awaiting some kit install. It may be planning for the future.

      Another upstream would be good but with their likely traffic levels it might make more sense to have just the one for now.

      Either way all ISPs start out small and many of the altnets have much of their funding being spent on building fibre: with this approach they shift the costs of IP onto operational expenditure rather than capital expenditure.

      Don’t be so quick to judge, especially on matters most of us neither have the knowledge, context or expertise to comment on.

  6. Avatar photo jamie moulding says:

    I have lightspeed it’s fantastic. I use my eero router with it too, just switched it to bridge mode. Glad to hear about 2gb plan, don’t think I’ll need it though. If you are thinking about ordering it use JamiemrTAAS when ordering and you’ll get yourself 2 months free, as will I

  7. Avatar photo Zipa says:

    It would be nice if their service was actually available across all of the towns they supposedly cover. I live down a main road in Spalding and its still not available, and its just the usual fob off message on their website.

    “We’re really pleased to share that our fast full-fibre has now reached your area. We’re just getting a few final things sorted out, then we’ll be in touch to see when we can get you connected to LightSpeed.”

    1. Avatar photo NoFibreHere says:

      Fobbing off messages are the standard for them. They aren’t willing to engage with people or local councils as we’ve tried

  8. Avatar photo Lee says:

    I emailed them aasking what the router/ ont would be as the current nokia xs-2426g-a is 1000mbps. They promptly responded and said its an Adtran SDG 8622, with 1x wan and 1x lan both @2.5gbps. Can’t stand Adtrans since my sentence using Be Fibres 854-v6, utter garbage unit with matching quality of service.

  9. Avatar photo Toby White says:

    Looking for some updates on LightSpeed. We’ve recently moved to Terrington St Clement, Norfolk, which has LightSpeed. The pole down the road had their plaque up with QR code, there are others in the street. 5 months ago, they said our postcode was serviced, yet now it’s not. We are 1 road away from postcodes that are serviced… and there are no other FTTP providers here yet! It’s a little bit frustrating, to say the least.

    When I called, they said not to wait around if I was due to switch.

    I’m still in contract at the minute with Vodafone but the standard FTTC upload speeds aren’t great.

  10. Avatar photo John thorne says:

    There is no need for download speeds at this speed, no fileservers where we download from provid this speed, so we would only notice this if we where downloading multiple files on multiple devices at the same time.

    We would get far better service if they provided a equal download to upload service.

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