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Leading UK broadband provider BT has signed an agreement with Alcatel-Lucent in a bid to further extend its 21st Century Network (21CN).

The networking development and convergence firm will help BT increase capacity and deliver content cost-effectively, as it prepares to introduce new video-rich services to the consumer market.

With BT ploughing resources into its new Vision IPTV service, the company sees the five-year deal with Alcatel-Lucent as a major stride forwards.

George Nazi, Managing Director for BT 21CN Core Convergence, commented: "21CN is a huge transformational programme. It's about providing a network for the future which requires a game-changing approach.

"Alcatel-Lucent came up with an innovative solution that will help us keep 21CN at the forefront of innovation and radical change."

Last week, it was announced that Sky's premium sports channels will soon be available through broadband TV packages offered by BT.

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