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Vodafone has called for Openreach to be more ambitious with its broadband infrastructure plans.

According to Matthew Braovac, Head of Regulatory Affairs at Vodafone UK, many infrastructure projects in British history were developed on a very large scale.

For example, he told the Financial Times that the sewers in London were built to handle a population ten times as large as it was at the time they were built.

Mr Braovac has therefore urged Openreach to adopt a similar mentality with regards to broadband infrastructure development.

"If you know where the final destination is then it is better to do it right the first time," he commented.

Mr Braovac warned that otherwise, the UK risks losing out in the race to achieve international broadband supremacy.

Much of the criticism of Openreach is based on its reluctance to abandon old copper lines and run fibre optic cables straight to the home.

Clive Selley, Chief Executive of Openreach, has acknowledged that fibre is superior to copper and insisted he is a "big fan" of the technology.

However, he stated that supplying it to every home across the country would cost tens of billions of pounds.

Mr Selley stressed that Openreach is currently working to connect high streets and business parks directly to fibre and planning to introduce G.Fast technology to speed up copper connections, so ultrafast speeds can be delivered at a much lower cost.

The goal is for 12 million homes to have access to ultrafast speeds by 2020.

Mr Selley went on to insist that the debate over fibre means many of the facts about the internet speeds available in the UK are being overlooked.

"We have the highest speed of the big European countries, we have the highest adoption and the lowest retail prices," he said. 

"The idea that is a failure when you look at the big picture does not stand up to even a cursory analysis."

Openreach is currently trialling a new technology to increase fibre broadband speeds over long phone lines in the remote community of North Tolsta on the Isle of Lewis.

The organisation recently hailed the initial results from its tests of Long Reach VDSL as "encouraging", as most households have seen fibre broadband speeds increase significantly.

Source: Financial Times

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