This week Sovereign Harbour and other parts of the east side of Eastbourne have been inundated with Openreach vans with engineers spotted working in street cabinets and underground cavities normally hidden under manhole covers. It would appear that a whole lot of fibre splicing has been going on as preparations are made to launch FTTP (proper fibre) in the area at some point in April 2020. The word on the street, literally, from one of the engineers was, "Check your ISP's website for availability from about mid-April." Apparently the cabling in our area at least is just about done, but the system needs to be commissioned before they open it up for paying customers.

I know this topic is outside the normal range of what gets posted here, but it's local news and I make heavy use of my broadband connection, this site being one element of that, so it is kind of at least "meta"!

Eastbourne has had FTTC for the last eight years or so, providing for maximum download speeds of 80Mbit/s. Although this technology is known as "Fibre" it only truly runs on glass fibre cables to your local cabinet (typically a dark green metal box on the pavement or roadside near where you live). That's why it is called Fibre To The Cabinet. From that cabinet to your home the connection is made over old copper wires still, limiting the maximum speed at which you can connect. Nevertheless, the technology offered a huge improvement over the previous system. Broadband here went from an iffy 1.2Mbit/s to a solid 80Mbit/s overnight when we upgraded from ADSL2+ to FTTC.

Fibre To The Premises (FTTP), however, offers the prospect of fibre all the way to a new modem in your home, removing the old copper wire from the network connection altogether, and opening up much higher top speeds. I understand that Openreach will be providing connection speeds at approximately 150Mbit/s and 300Mbit/s at first. Openreach is the company, owned by BT, which runs the national network that most ISPs use (except for companies like Virgin Media, who don't serve all of Eastbourne). Should you feel the need, the need for speed, you will be able to buy FTTP through your existing ISP, when it becomes available.