A report by analyst Point Topic, compiled on behalf of the Independent Networks Co-operative Association (INCA), found that more than 5.5 million homes and businesses in the UK can now connect to an independent fiber optic broadband network – and for the first time, the total number of live connections provided by the “altnets” exceeds one million.
Based on data provided by independent network operators across the country, the 2022 Measures for the independent network sector in the UK report shows that the sector has again doubled in size compared to the previous year and is increasingly becoming a popular source of investment.
The study showed that the UK altnet sector continued to attract significant amounts of private funding, with investment and spending commitments expected to reach £17.7 billion by the end of 2025.
INCA noted that when combined with the £12 billion confirmed by BT Group, the £5 billion announced by the UK government and the £2 billion forecast by Virgin Media O2, investment levels will exceed previous estimates of £30 billion to bring next-generation networks to every property. United Kingdom.
The report also showed UK independent carrier fiber broadband networks grew 111% year-on-year to the end, up from 110% in 2019-20 and 52% in 2018- 2019. The majority use gigabit fibre-to-the-premises or home (FTTP/H) and fiber-to-the-building (FTTB) technology, with traditional VDSL being increasingly abandoned.
Growing provider CityFibre alone accounted for more than a million premises flowing through independent networks, and CNIB observed that as CityFibre rose through the ranks in terms of FTTP infrastructure providers, they were heading towards a truly national network.
He also noted that Community Fiber has surpassed half a million homes in London, WightFibre has established itself as the leading full fiber provider on the Isle of Wight and CNIB members are building full fiber networks in all parts of the UK. Fixed Wireless Access (FWA) networks are estimated to cover more than two million premises, although not all will have full-speed service.
The 1.03 million live connections to independent fixed networks primarily delivered by full fiber and gigabit connections already represent a 20% adoption rate in an expanding footprint, demonstrating, according to the CNIB, that residential consumers in particular require better bandwidth, symmetry and stability.
The complete fixed fiber network infrastructure provided by independent operators is expected to reach over 11.5 million premises by the end of 2022, with approximately 1.4 million live connections. By the end of 2025, these operators expect 10.3 million live connections on their networks.
“This high and continued level of investment, combined with commitments from other private sector players such as BT and Virgin Media, and money invested by the government, shows that the UK is on the right track, to the first time in its history, to compete on broadband infrastructure,” said CNIB CEO Malcolm Corbett.
“Independent network operators are a key part of this connectivity puzzle, which will provide consumers with real choice and drive innovation in the broadband services they consume.”
CNIB Chairman Alex Blowers said, “This report demonstrates the growing maturity of the independent broadband industry.
“He is now moving from fundraising and planning mode to his delivery and execution stage, and is undeniably a key partner in delivering a 21st century digital UK.
“It is crucial that the Government and Ofcom ensure that the momentum is maintained, evolving the underlying policy and regulatory framework in support of the infrastructure competition that has now arrived in the Kingdom. -United.”