Superfast broadband offers significantly faster speeds than standard ADSL broadband, with download speeds typically in excess of 30Mbit/s and utilises fibre technology, most commonly FTTC (Fibre To The Cabinet) and now SoGEA.

Whilst FTTC and SoGEA are described as 'fibre technologies', this is a bit of a misleading term and can cause confusion. For a lot of people, the term 'fibre' is interchangeable with FTTC and they often assume that they will have a full fibre connection to their home or office.

The reality is that the fibre in this scenario is between the local exchange and the green telecom cabinet at the end of your street or the side of the road. The connection between the telecom cabinet and the home or office is using the existing copper telephone lines. The performance of of these copper lines for data transmission decreases with distance so even if you're on a 'fibre' product, if you're a long way from the street cabinet your speeds could still be quite low.

Ultrafast broadband offers much faster speeds of up to around 900Mb/s and is typically provided using FTTP (Fibre To The Premise) technology. As the name implies, this is full fibre provisioned all the way to the office or the home. Full fibre optic communications offers superior performance as data can be transmitted at much higher speeds and over much greater distances than copper.

How FTTC/SoGEA and FTTP works

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