European ISPs BT and Alcatel-Lucent Reach ‘Fastest Ever’ Broadband Speeds

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BT and Alcatel-Lucent successfully completed a fiber broadband field test this week, increasing data transfer speed efficiency by 42.5 percent. The transfer reached 1.4 terabits per second, which the companies say is the fastest ever broadband speed.

The transfer took place between central London’s BT Tower and BT Adastral Park research facility in Ipswich, 410km away. Data moved along existing fiber broadband cables, and demonstrated the potential for the in-ground infrastructure to meet future demand.

“Essentially it’s more important for ISPs and consumers won’t see any immediate benefits, just that their provider will be able to keep up with their demands,” Oliver Johnson, CEO of broadband analyst firm Point Topic told IBTimes UK. “Consumers won’t be able to have 1.4 terabits speeds in the near future, certainly not in the next decade.”

Currently, BT’s broadband network runs over fiber cables between the exchange and a “local cabinet,” and then to the individual customer on old copper cables. This method is known as fiber-to-the-cabinet or FTTC, and is a popular method of fiber delivery in Europe due to its cost-effectiveness.

FTTC is expected to be replaced by “G.Fast” network technology, which may provide 1000MBPS speeds through fiber cables extended closer to the end user.

While broadband subscriptions have been increasing around the world, fiber is the fastest growing method of service delivery, according to the OECD.

While improving speed is a constant concern for hosting and network companies, most recent developments have involved software boosting speed for big data transfers by avoiding duplication and bottlenecks, or the benefits of SSD hardware.

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  1. Only part of the BT Network has fibre to the cabinet in the UK. There are millions of premises that are unable to get access to the 'superfast' that is delivered from these. Then you have to live or have a business fairly close by to get superfast (24 Mbps or over). It is certainly not a bed of roses, the UK Government put effort in to make the fast faster, this puts up the average speed and looks good to Europe and the rest of the World. But in reality it masks poor broadband speeds and will do for many years to come.