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BT's plan to spend £50 million on rolling out new fibre broadband across the UK is progressing well, according to the firm, despite a lack of updates on the project.

Last January, BT unveiled plans to expand its fibre service to 400,000 extra premises across 30 cities, which followed the telecoms giant's £2.5 billion investment to provide some 19 million UK premises with superfast broadband.

Along with its commitment to the separate, state aid-fuelled Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK), programme, which hopes to boost superfast coverage to 90% by late 2015 and 95% by 2017, BT's investment totals over £3 billion.

However, the additional £50 million was intended to cover some of the gaps left open by the BDUK project and its own investment.

Namely, enabling city cabinets that were not part of its original commercial plans due to constraints, deploying fibre to cabinets to serve units such as apartment blocks, and laying further fibre cables including Fibre-to-the-Premises (FTTP) at new build sites.

At the time, Mike Galvin, Openreach’s Managing Director of Network Investment, said the company was reaching "vast swathes" of rural Britain in conjunction with its public sector partners, but vowed to upgrade city areas "under our own steam".

Since then, updates regarding the £50 million scheme have been thin on the ground, though Mr Galvin did note in late 2014 that some city areas have "proved challenging" and that BT will be returning to those and will pass "hundreds of thousands of additional premises" with fibre.

More silence followed, but BT has finally revealed when and where the investments are being made, and vowed to match the pledge it made in January last year.

"Some of that money is already being spent on trials of new fibre technology in London. Those are in-turn helping us plan and allocate funds effectively so that we can reach the largest possible number of homes and businesses in each area," a spokesman told ISPreview. Moving forward, BT promised to update businesses and the public on specific roll-out locations as and when details are concrete.


ISP Review

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