What is FTTC / BT Infinity / Fibre broadband? & How is it different from standard ADSL broadband?
As shown in the diagram above, the main physical difference is the use of fibre optic cable. In FTTC fibre optic links replace the section from the local green cabinet all the way back to the telephone exchange, enabling a significant improvement in data through put both down & up stream. Generally you will be able to benefit even if you have poor quality copper links from your local green cabinet.
Data is transmitted through the fibre optic cable using pulses of light, this offers a number of advantages:-
- Light is not effected by interference caused by electrical equipment
- Data can travel vastly greater distances before experiencing losses
- Higher data through put rates
- Significant future proof readiness for even higher data through puts
- It is harder to snoop on fibre optic cables
- Non conductivity - i.e. no path for electrical surges such as lighting
- Great for streaming data
With FTTC you can in theory easily achieve downloads / upload speed of 100 Mbps, however there are a number of factors that will prevent this:
- Actual copper cable length to your local green cabinet
- Capping on the retail supplier network (ISP)
- Traffic shaping on the retail supplier network (ISP)
- Traffic management on the retail supplier network (ISP)
- Capping on the wholesaler network (core network providers)
- Traffic shaping on the wholesaler network (core network providers)
- Traffic management on the wholesaler network (core network providers)
- Actual performance of the physical network (technical implementation based on equipment & protocols used)
Controlling network traffic is something that we have to accept as absolutely necessary in order prevent a small minority of users from abusing the network, however the policies used by some suppliers may not suit your needs so try to read the small print & online reviews about your prospective new supplier.
Where can I check to see if I can get FTTC?