BTOpenreach has today officially made its new 220Mbps (20Mbps upload) capable Fibre-to-the-Premises (FTTP) based ultrafast broadband service, which will eventually replace its old 110Mbps/100Mbps products, available to UK ISPs and their customers.
The new product is intended to help Openreach “streamline” their portfolio of Fibre-to-the-Premises (FTTP) products (here). It’s also intended to act as a more attractive alternative to the operators top-end 330Mbps (30Mbps uploads) service, which few ISPs have adopted due to the high cost of data capacity and less attractive pricing.
The 220Mbps service, which also supports a prioritised rate of 20Mbps, costs £92 +vat to install (engineer visit and the necessary connection kit) and its annual rental price ranges from £187.32 +vat per year if you take the Transition Product (only available in conjunction with a phone line) to £288 +vat for the standalone solution. ISPs will charge more than this as they also need to account for additional costs (e.g. value-added features) and a profit margin.
By comparison the standalone price for BT’s 110Mbps (15Mbps upload) product is £258.48 per year, which rises to £396 for their 330Mbps (20Mbps upload) solution. Unfortunately only a small number of UK premises currently have access to a native FTTP service but BT are currently rolling out a new FTTP-on-Demand (FTTPoD / FoD) product to solve that.
FoD essentially makes FTTP available to all existing FTTC (up to 80Mbps) lines, which is currently on course to cover about 66% of the UK by spring 2014. The only downside, which is sadly rather significant, is that you could end up paying thousands of pounds to have it installed (details). Suffice to say that many ISPs find this to be a confusing proposition (here).
But anybody that does have deep enough pockets could perhaps consider it to be a worthy long-term investment in the value of their home.