BT looking to hit 1Gbps with copper network in the UK

The United States is getting a lot of new small 1Gbps networks, but no national broadband provider has stepped in to kick the super-fast fiber optic into overdrive.

Over in the UK, BT rules the roost with their broadband, but millions still sit on copper network, instead of jumping to fiber optic like Virgin Media.

Instead of swapping out the cables, BT has been working on new G.Fast trials, using fiber to the cabinet technology capable of hitting 800Mbps downstream and 200Mbps upstream, much higher than Virgin Media’s 150Mbps.


This is not the first time a provider has announced copper cable can still be useful in this day and age. For over a decade, various ISPs have announced new copper cable advancements, but they all come with distance constraints.

BT downplays this issue in their press release, claiming to hit 800Mbps at a 19M distance and 700Mbps over a 66M distance. Even if this is true, we are not sure how all of this advanced copper wire will be practical if miles away from the central office.

The other question is will BT deploy this new speed nationwide or only to certain areas in the UK. Almost 10 million people use BT’s broadband, alongside PlusNet, their “Yorkshire” subsidiary, almost twice the amount of Virgin Media subscribers.

This is changing however, with more people moving over to Virgin Media and Sky Broadband. BT currently only offers speeds up to 72Mbps, while Virgin Media offers 150Mbps and Sky hits 76Mbps.

The first ISP to offer 1Gbps nationwide in the UK might not be as well loved as they would in the US. Even though the UK is a Internet heavy nation, there are less people complaining about the state of the Internet in Britain, compared to in the US.

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