Britain to pilot superfast internet connectivity in six areas


LONDON, Sep. 3 (Xinhua) — The first stage of a 260-million-U.S.-dollar scheme to help bring the fastest broadband to businesses, schools and hospitals was launched in Britain Sunday with pilot schemes in six areas.

The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) said full fiber networks will offer connection speeds of 1,000 megabytes (1 Gigabit) per second in the pilot areas.

Full fiber broadband could allow hospitals to share high definition quality graphics of medical scans in seconds to improve diagnosis speeds. It will also enable school classrooms to see a vast increase the number of pupils who can stream educational videos at the same time

Test projects will go ahead in Aberdeen, West Sussex, Coventry and Warwickshire, Bristol and Bath, West Yorkshire and in Greater Manchester, said DCMS.

Each of the projects will get around 13 million U.S. dollars of government funding to test innovative ways of connecting offices and public sector buildings with the next generation of broadband, with full fiber networks that run fiber connections straight to the doors of customers’ homes or businesses.

Currently the final stage of connectivity from street cabinets into homes and businesses is through copper cables.

The announcement is the first step in a four-year program unveiled by Chancellor is the Exchequer Philip Hammond in his Spring budget to encourage the growth of full fiber connectivity across Britain.

Exchequer Secretary to the Treasury, Andrew Jones said: “How we live and work today is directly affected by how good our broadband connection is. For our economy to thrive, it is vital we make smart investments to ensure our digital infrastructure is world class and fit for the future.

“Full fiber connections are the gold standard and we are proud to announce today the next step to get Britain better connected.”

Minister of State for Digital, Matt Hancock, said: “To keep Britain as the digital world leader we need to have the right infrastructure in place to allow us to keep up with the rapid advances in technology now and in the future.”