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Can I get fibre optic broadband in my area?

Friday, June 6th 2014

Fibre broadband is faster than standard broadband connections, providing speeds from 38Mbps to 152Mbps. It’s not as widely available as standard broadband, but you may be able to get it where you are.

Fibre optic broadband checker

To check your area and find out if you can get fibre optic broadband, type your postcode into our checker below or see our fibre optic broadband comparison page.

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How to get fibre

If our postcode checker says that you can get fibre optic broadband, we will show you a list of the packages on offer from the fibre optic broadband providers operating in your area. You can then compare the different speeds, download limits and costs of each package so you can choose the right fibre optic broadband package.

Installation

Once you’ve signed up for a fibre optic broadband package your provider will send an engineer to install it for you.

An engineer will perform the installation

Around 80% of UK homes now have access to a pre-existing fibre optic broadband connection. However, in some cases, as a physical connection must be made between your home and the fibre optic network, an engineer might need to run a cable from the road to your home. If you have your own home this will not be a problem. If you rent a property however, or if you live in an apartment block, you will of course need the permission of the owner before you can allow any digging to take place. If you’re unsure, you should discuss this with your landlord and your preferred fibre optic broadband provider.

Your home may need a dedicated connection point

Once the physical connection is made to the outside of your property, the engineer will then need to connect the master phone point (and TV points, if a digital TV cable subscription is included with your fibre optic broadband package) to your new fibre optic cable, or they will install a new dedicated connection point.

Most of the time, equipment is supplied free

Your broadband provider will supply all the equipment needed to connect your home, including the wireless router, and the engineer will install everything and test it, and answer any questions you may have, before he leaves.

The benefits

There are many benefits to fibre optic broadband. Most notably fibre optic broadband is much faster than any other broadband package that you may have used before, meaning little or no waiting time for things to happen online.

Fibre broadband gives you faster downloads

Download speeds can be up to 10 times faster than the best standard broadband, with some packages offering up to 152Mbps. At speeds like this you can download entire MP3 albums from sites like iTunes in a matter of seconds, stream services such as the BBC iPlayer with no annoying interruptions and download high definition movies in a matter of minutes.

Upload speeds are quicker too

Upload speeds are also much higher, with some services offering uploads at up to 19Mbps. This means you’ll be able to upload photos and videos, even HD, in a fraction of the time you may be used to.

Prices are becoming comparable to standard broadband

Currently a subscription to a fibre optic broadband will cost more than a standard broadband package, but prices are falling as competition increases in the fibre optic broadband market. As it stands, for most people, the slightly higher price of fibre optic broadband is easily outweighed by the benefits it brings.

Alternatives

If you can’t get fibre broadband, you should still be able to get online using a standard broadband connection instead. The good news is that there are plenty of broadband packages that are available to over 90% of UK homes, so if fibre isn't an option for you, why not find out exactly what you can get in your area using our Ofcom-approved broadband comparison listing.

And don't forget, Cable.co.uk now produces in-depth broadband reviews of every major UK broadband package, so check them out if you need more information.

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