FTTP stands for “Fibre to the Premise” and is the fastest, most stable internet connection that’s currently available to UK homes and businesses. Also known as FTTH (“Fibre to the Home") or “ultrafast broadband”, FTTP is a full-fibre broadband solution.
If you’re using FTTP, then your internet connection delivers data transfers via fibre optic cables. From the internet exchange to the telephone exchange (AKA the green cabinet at the end of your street), right up to your doorstep, the entire connection is made via fibre optic cables.
But why is that important?
Fibre optic cables have a glass core rather than a copper core, so they experience much lower latency. Data is transferred using light rather than electrical signals, so fibre optic cables can deliver faster transfer speeds than traditional broadband connections, such as FTTC.
In addition to lightning speed, FTTP broadband delivers secure and reliable connections, so premises like build-to-rents, which have multiple users using the same connection, can be assured that everyone will have a great internet experience.
FTTP does exactly what it says on the tin – it delivers seamless access to the internet via end-to-end fibre optic cables between your property and the main exchange.
Currently, only around 33% of homes can get FTTP and the main FTTP network provider is Openreach. However, there are many altnets around including Glide, which are installing their own local fibre for student accommodation or rural areas that may not otherwise be serviced.
For FTTP to reach your premises, the fibre optic infrastructure needs to have been pre-installed in your area. This includes fibre optic cables that are laid along the existing underground ducts or overhead telegraph poles of the telephone network.
In addition to the fibre optic cables, a Connectorized Block Terminal (CBT) needs to have been installed in close proximity to your property, by the broadband network provider. This device is the connection point between your property and the cable network.
Once all of this infrastructure is in place, you’ll have the option to connect to the internet via an FTTP broadband package, which can provide you with speeds up to 1Gbps.
To get an FTTP connection to your property, you’ll need to order a package from a fibre broadband provider. This will only be possible if the appropriate fibre infrastructure has been installed in your area.
Once the order has been processed, the broadband provider will give you an installation date, or even multiple dates, depending on the complexity of the installation process for your property. Overall, you can expect a wait of around 9-18 working days from the time you place your order until the actual date of installation.
Two things will happen when your FTTP broadband is installed. Firstly, a Customer Service Point (CSP) box is installed on the exterior of your property. This box is the connection point between your property and the local CBT, which has either been installed underground or at a nearby telegraph pole.
Secondly, an Optical Network Termination (ONT) will be installed inside your property. This is an FTTP-ready modem, which will then be connected to your router or hub, as provided by your broadband provider.
All going well, it usually takes a couple of hours for these two devices to be installed at your premises. From here, it’s a simple matter of connecting the outside CSP to the CBT via a fibre optic cable.
While FTTP is reaching more properties each day and is expected to reach around 85% of homes by 2026, it isn’t available to everyone yet. There are two main ways to check if FTTP is currently available in your area and all you have to do is enter your postcode.
- The Openreach Availability Checker– Upon entering your postcode, the site will tell you if FTTP or “Ultrafast Full Fibre” is already available to you and if not, then whether FTTP is coming soon to your area.
- The BT Wholesale Broadband Availability Checker – Like the Openreach Availability Checker, this site will tell you if FTTP or “WBC FTTP” is available in your area, and whether you can order a new ONT for your property.
Glide Fibre is an award-winning FTTP service provider that builds, owns and operates its own fibre infrastructure across a growing number of UK cities. Get in touch today to discuss your connectivity needs.