CityFibre, Toob push the envelope further in UK gigabit broadband

Fibre-to-the premises provider launches full-fibre broadband for small to medium businesses in south of England, while independent full-fibre platform racks up 360km of infrastructure beneath the streets of Inverness 

The full geographic extent of the rush to fibre connectivity in the UK has been shown in two key extensions from independent gigabit broadband providers at opposite ends of the corporate size scale and in opposite parts of the country – the south coast of England and the far north of Scotland.

Southampton-based fibre-to-the premises broadband provider Toob is targeting local businesses as it extends its full-fibre network across Southampton, the county of Hampshire and then into neighbouring Surrey. The company has a mission to transform the South of England’s internet experience by opening up its network to more than a million premises over the next 10 years and is now building its network in Southampton, Camberley, Aldershot, Farnborough and Fareham.

The network, which runs fibre-optic cables to the home, is now available to businesses in a move that Toob says will see it offer some of the fastest broadband speeds to small and medium-sized businesses across the South. The company is promising 900Mbps download and upload speeds and says businesses can now exploit the faster speeds that full-fibre can deliver, download speeds 17x faster and upload speeds 90x faster than the UK average.

Toob’s business proposition is available at a rate of £50 per month and benefits include a money-back service-level agreement, unlimited usage and no in-contract price rises, as well as optional static IP addresses and Wi-Fi mesh extenders.

“Small and medium-sized businesses drive our local economy and are a bedrock of the local community,” said Toob CEO Nick Parbutt. “However, for too long, businesses have either had the choice of using a business broadband service that delivers slow speeds, particularly on upload, or paying for a leased line costing hundreds of pounds per month.

“Toob can offer the connectivity that businesses need to operate effectively in our increasingly digital world at a reasonable cost. Using Toob’s full-fibre broadband allows businesses to fully exploit the benefits of the cloud, productivity applications and collaboration tools to service their customers and work effectively with their employees and suppliers.”

Meanwhile, at the other end of the UK, CityFibre is claiming that its full-fibre network in the Inverness region could now cover the length of 36km-long Loch Ness 10 times over.

Recent data published by analyst Hatch into the projected economic impact of CityFibre’s UK-wide full-fibre roll-out calculated a productivity and innovation benefit totalling £100m in Inverness alone. CityFibre’s build partner, GCU Utilities, is working in various locations across the city, with work ongoing in areas including Leachkin, Merkinch, Scorguie and South Kessock.  

Work has already been completed across most of Inverness in areas including Ballifeary, Balloch, Balnafettack, Clachnaharry, Culloden, Cradlehall, Culcabock, Culduthel, Dalneigh, Drakies, Drummond, Hilton, Inshes, Kinmylies, Lochardil, Millburn, Milton of Leys, Muirtown, Raigmore, Resaurie, Slackbuie, Smithton and Westhill.

Inverness residents can access a range of options, with download and upload speeds of up to 900Mbps, from service providers BrawBand, TalkTalk and Zen, with others, including CityFibre’s UK launch partner Vodafone, expected to join the local network soon.

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