The key stages from planning to go live
Once we start preparing an exchange to be enabled, it is typically 10 to 15 months (but could be longer) before it's ready to supply superfast fibre broadband to one or more street cabinets in the area. Why? Here's what’s involved.
The most important thing is to know what the current picture is like in an exchange area. So we do a full assessment of the existing network infrastructure to provide accurate, up-to-date information for engineers.
Months 1-9: Preparing the exchange
We then agree and plan where the new equipment goes. As every exchange is different, we may have to create bespoke equipment. Once ordered and built, we install everything and upgrade the power facilities.
Months 3-9: Planning the network
While we're upgrading the exchange, we survey the area and draw up a plan for where the fibre, new ducts and street cabinets go. This often involves consultation with local councils to comply with local planning regulations. Cabinets themselves can be subject to delays (see our FAQ to learn more).
Months 10-15: Installation
The final stage is building from the exchange to new street cabinet locations that have passed the planning stage. When the first 10 cabinets are ready, we tell our customers so they can start to offer fibre broadband services to homes and businesses.
What's so great about fibre?
The network that delivers today's phones and broadband is an all-copper infrastructure. But that means the further from the exchange you are, the slower your broadband speed.
Fibre is different. A single fibre is capable of carrying much more information than copper, and can do so in a far shorter space of time. It’s also more reliable and longer lasting, too.