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Ofcom has welcomed Vodafone and CityFibre's commitment to boosting access to ultrafast broadband across the UK.

The two companies this week announced a long-term strategic partnership that will lead to up to five million premises having access to gigabit-capable broadband by 2025.

The rollout is due to begin in early 2018, with the first phase seeing the technology being deployed to one million homes and businesses over three years.

Vodafone and CityFibre will then have the option of extending the commercial terms of their agreement to reach a further four million premises by 2025.

According to Jonathan Oxley, competition director at Ofcom, this shows there is "real momentum" behind full fibre broadband.

"We’re making it quicker and easier to lay these networks, which will help support the UK’s future economy," he commented.

"We want to see commitment to full-fibre investment right across the industry.”

The plans have also been welcomed by Openreach, which said it hopes Vodafone and CityFibre's proposals will complement its own programme of upgrading two million premises, which is "already well underway".

Vodafone and CityFibre believe fibre-to-the-premises networks provide extremely fast and reliable broadband services, as they use fibre-optic cables for each stage of the connection

The two companies said this means gigabit-capable technology is "vastly superior" to outdated networks that rely on ageing copper telephone lines, and can therefore transform consumers' everyday lives and enhance business productivity.

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