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Broadband explained: From copper to full fibre


Broadband’s simple isn’t it?

It brings the internet into your home so you can stream, surf and game online whenever you want.

But sometimes things aren’t as simple as they first seem. Did you know there are different ways of delivering broadband to your home that can make a huge difference in the way you experience the internet?

There are three main types of broadband.

Firstly, there’s Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line - or ADSL as it’s usually known.

This is broadband that uses the old copper telephone lines to carry the internet signal to your house. These copper lines were originally designed to carry telephone calls – not data-devouring TV streaming services like Netflix or X-Box Live – and they can be affected by things such as the weather and your distance from the local exchange. It’s old technology not designed for the way we use the internet today.

Then there’s Fibre To The Cabinet, or FTTC. This is where the internet provider has laid fibre cable as far as the street cabinet down the road. Although you get a fast fibre service right up the cabinet the signal still has to make the last leg of its journey on old copper wiring – with all the potential problems that entails.

Finally, there’s Fibre To The Premises – or FTTP, which is full fibre broadband. This is what KCOM’s Lightstream is.

FTTP delivers ultrafast broadband via fibre cable not just to the cabinet down the street but all the way into your home. There isn’t a copper wire to be seen anywhere in the process. This is the fastest and most reliable broadband technology but, so far, only five per cent of the UK has access to it.

Thanks to KCOM’s £85m full fibre rollout, all of its Hull and East Yorkshire network will have access to FTTP Lightstream broadband by March 2019. That’s more than 200,000 homes that will be able to enjoy the best broadband experience possible.

So, say goodbye to buffering, cheerio to old copper wiring and hello to a bright, full fibre future.

Watch our video about FTTH.

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