Why BT Broadband prospects can thank Vodafone for his or her subsequent fiber velocity improve

BT customers upgraded to their broadband speeds probably couldn’t thank a rival – Vodafone. That’s because Nick Read, CEO of Vodafone, has spoken openly about considering plans to invest in the £ 15 billion roll-out of gigabit broadband across the UK.

BT’s Openreach, which installs and maintains the internet infrastructure used by BT, EE, Sky, TalkTalk, Shell Energy, Vodafone and others, hopes to connect 25 million locations with future-proof full fiber broadband by December 2026. With fewer than 5 million households already connected to their gigabit-enabled connections – compared to nearly 16 million owned by Virgin Media – BT understands that it may need help to achieve its lofty goal.

Although BT originally pledged to reach 20 million premises by 2026, that goal was increased by an additional 5 million earlier this year. If successful, the company will have 80 percent of the UK connected to broadband infrastructure capable of delivering speeds of up to 1,000 Mbps. This is a serious upgrade compared to the current UK average broadband speed of 80Mbps.

BT announced the additional five million connections and said it could “add further shareholder value by financing the additional 5 million space through a joint venture with outside parties.” And one of these external parties is likely to be Vodafone, which currently has no full fiber network.

The wireless operator also missed the opportunity to partner with the UK’s most expansive full fiber broadband network, owned and operated by Virgin Media. While the company was open to offers, wireless operator O2 got its first. With the £ 31 billion merger now approved by regulators, O2 has access to a huge broadband network with full fiber, while Virgin Media owns its own 4G and 5G masts (something Vodafone has always paid for).

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Nick Read, CEO of Vodafone, told The Telegraph about the next steps for the company: “We are actively working with Openreach to understand their plans and plans, but we will be exploring them with many players – not just BT. “

It is unclear what will benefit Vodafone from the deal. The company is already using Openreach’s infrastructure and will benefit from full fiber broadband once BT’s brand completes the upgrades. Aside from increasing the roll-out to an additional five million households, which otherwise might not be the case, this seems a little one-sided.

Interestingly, Vodafone was an early backer of CityFibre, which is currently driving the UK’s third largest broadband infrastructure provider with plans to connect 10 million homes. It remains to be seen whether Vodafone plans further investments in the Openreach competitor.

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