VODAFONE HAS LIKELY ruined BT's week with the announcement that it's teaming with CityFibre to launch its own fibre broadband services in the UK.
The long-term deal will see the CityFibre build and run a new FTTP network, with Vodafone bagging itself a period of exclusivity to market ultrafast consumer broadband services.
Vodafone, which is touting the move as "one of the most significant developments in UK telecommunications since the launch of ADSL broadband around 17 years ago," says that by using CityFibre's "extremely fast and reliable" optical fibre network, it will be able to deliver Gigabit-capable fibre to up to five million UK homes and businesses by 2025.
The first phase of the scheme will, which aims to deploy fibre to one million premises, will start in early-2019 and be 'largely complete' by 2021, with the second phase of connecting the remaining four million premises set to be completed by 2025.
In a sly dig at its rival, which currently use copper cabling to connect customers' homes to the rest of the network, Vodafone UK chief executive Nick Jeffery said: "The UK has fallen far behind the rest of the world, trapped by the limited choice available on legacy networks.
"We look forward to working with CityFibre to build the Gigabit fibre network that the UK needs and deserves."
Chief executive of CityFibre Greg Mesch added: "This agreement will unlock the UK's full fibre future and is a major step forward in delivering our vision for a Gigabit Britain.
"With this commitment from Vodafone, we have a partner with whom we can transform the digital capabilities of millions of homes and businesses and establish an unassailable wholesale infrastructure position across 20 per cent of the UK broadband market."
Vodafone's announcement comes after CityFibre in July revealed plans to construct a new 1Gbps FTTP broadband network for five to 10 UK towns and cities. µ
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