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BT brings fibre broadband deadline forward

Two thirds of UK will have access to superfast service by 2014

BT has revealed it will bring superfast fibre broadband to two thirds of country a year earlier than hoped.

Under the £2.5bn roll-out BT had originally hoped to reach 66 percent of the UK with its fibre network that offers speeds of 'up-to' 100Mbps through a combination of fibre-to-the-premises (FTTP) and Fibre-to-the-cabinet (FTTC) technology by 2015. However the telecoms firm has bought forward some £300m worth of investment which now take place over the next few years and revised the deadline to 2014.

"Our roll-out of fibre broadband is one of the fastest in the world and so it is great to be ahead of what was an already challenging schedule. The acceleration reflects the success of the programme to date and is testament to the hard work and innovation of our people. We are investing when others are merely talking about it," said Ian Livingston, CEO of BT Group.

Furthermore, in a bid to achieve this new deadline BT revealed it will recruit a further 520 engineers, many of which will be former armed forces employees.

Jeremy Hunt, Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Culture said the announcement was "great news".

"Superfast broadband is essential for achieving sustainable growth and it is vital that homes and businesses have access to it as soon as possible," he said.

"With access to superfast broadband UK businesses will have the infrastructure they need to grow and develop new products and services. This investment means new jobs today, but also allows us to build the digital infrastructure we need for the jobs of tomorrow. The government is committed to ensuring the UK is leading the way in broadband provision and BT's accelerated roll-out will help make that a reality."

BT said six millions homes and businesses across the UK already have access to the fibre network, and this will rise to ten million in 2012 before hitting the final target in 2014.

Last month, BT revealed BT the fibre broadband service will offer speeds of 'up to' 300Mbps in some areas from next year.


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