BT in 10Gbit/s broadband trial

UK telecommunications group BT, formerly British Telecom, has launched what it claims is the first ever trial of a 10Gbit/s or “hyper-fast” broadband network in a “live working environment”.

Cornwall-based engineering firm Arcol UK Ltd is the test site for deployment of the new technology where the service runs in tandem with the company’s existing 330Mbit/s service on the same fibre.

The proof-of-concept trial uses new fibre technology called XGPON (tens of gibabits on a passive optical network) developed by electronics company ZTE in partnership with Openreach.

Arcol is connected by a direct fibre link from its offices to BT’s exchange in  Truro, and is the first business in the country to enjoy the speeds, with more bandwidth available than was used at the highest peak for the entire Olympics media network.

The demonstration aims to show how even faster speeds could be provided over Cornwall’s new fibre infrastructure in the future by upgrading the electronics at the exchange and in user premises.

Potential speeds are so fast that the physical limits of the networking and computer equipment prevent the line from being used at its maximum capacity. Although the direct link between the Truro exchange and Arcol runs at 10Gbit/s, the company isn’t connected to the wider Internet at those speeds as there is “nothing that can be done on the web with 10Gbit/s”.

Ranulf Scarbrough, programme director for the Cornwall SuperFast Broadband Programme, said: “What is exciting about this trial is that these hyper-fast speeds have been obtained over the exactly the same fibre that carries BT’s fibre broadband services today. All we are doing is changing the electronics at either end.”

The 10Gbit/s trial runs over high-speed fibre optic network established by the Superfast Cornwall Programme, a superfast broadband partnership between the European Union, BT and Cornwall Council, which has made fibre-optic broadband available to more than 100 000 Cornish homes and businesses.  — (c) 2012 NewsCentral Media

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