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How to choose a fibre optic broadband service

Super quick broadband speeds allow for faster downloads and in today’s ever more data hungry world of streaming music and downloading HD movies, a high speed connection is becoming an essential household utility.

Fibre optic broadband allows for significantly greater speeds than traditional internet connections, thanks to the type of cable used. In the past, all internet connections were ADSL – that is they ran on the copper wires used for phone lines. The problem with these lines was that the further from the exchange your house happened to be, the slower the connection would become.

This is still true to a degree with fibre optic connections, but the dedicated cabling used vastly reduces the slow down caused by these additional distances.

So how fast is fast?

A few years ago, the majority of households made do with less than 1MPS. Downloading an album would take up to an hour. Average speeds have been creeping up with most providers now offering at least 5 MPS, but fibre optic providers usually start at around 10 MPS. The current fastest provider is Virgin Media with an ‘up to’ speed of 100Mb.

A 100MB connection allows you to download individual songs almost as fast as you can select them, and you could pull a full HD movie onto your PC in around 15 minutes. Nothing ever buffers. Ever.

But it doesn’t stop there. In the race for headlines, BT announced in January 2012 that they plan to roll out 300Mb broadband to those willing to pay for it as early as 2013.

Now that is quick!

Which Providers?

Virgin and BT are currently battling over the headlines to offer the fastest connections, but there are now other providers that offer fibre optic broadband also. Plusnet, Eclipse and Talk Talk all now offer quick connections which is good news for the consumer as more competition means fairer prices.

Fibre Availability

Unfortunately, fibre optic broadband is not available for everyone. Most areas of most major UK cities are covered, but not all. There is also very limited coverage in rural areas. The easiest way to find out if your household is in a fibre optic area is to use our Ofcom approved post code checker above. Put your postcode into our form, don’t forget to tick broadband, and then click search. We’ll pull the fastest available connections for you from all the major suppliers, including the fibre providers if they’re there. If there is no fibre result for you, don’t despair. It may just be a case of waiting a while. The major providers are increasing their coverage every month and the Department for Culture Media and Sports is driving through plans to ensure faster connections to rural areas, with announcements coming later this year.

Fibre Optic broadband is the future. If you want to discuss getting a fast connection yourself, give one of our independent experts a call on the number above. Or have a look through our table of packages and visit the provider sites for more information.

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