Since the turn of the millennium, homes and businesses across the UK have been increasing their dependence on reliable broadband connections to live more efficient lives. From email communications and staying in touch through social networks, to the number of internet-enabled devices helping us run our homes. There is no doubt that as we adjust to life in the digital age, the demand for faster, dependable broadband connectivity will continue to grow.
Thankfully for residents in the UK, broadband is fast catching up with our home bandwidth demands thanks to ‘fibre optic’ technology which is pioneering incredible changes to the broadband we know and love.
In this week’s tech blog, we’re going to explore the top 5 benefits of fibre optic broadband and why you might want to switch from older copper-based broadband to a full fibre-powered connection.
What is full fibre?
Firstly, let’s clarify what full fibre is all about. Full fibre is the latest technology being adopted across the globe as a solution to increased demand for broadband speeds and bandwidth.
The technology works by connecting networks with fibre-optic cables which, compared to their old copper-based counterparts, offer far more benefits including increased bandwidth, symmetrical speeds and greater stability. It also offers reduced maintenance overheads for operators – something that helps keep the cost of our broadband services lower than the competition.
We could go on, but we’ve written a much more detailed full fibre article if you’d like to read more about the technology.
Download files much faster
With the average download size getting larger year on year, the demand for faster download speeds is a hot topic as there’s a danger our home broadband connections will eventually fail to keep up. For example, the average size of a PowerPoint file has over the last 10 years.
Full fibre broadband brings a huge speed boost to your home or business with many providers offering hyperfast download speeds up to 900Mb/s. Better yet, the speed at which you can send data like photos or files to the internet also gets a much-needed boost, with symmetrical connections often matching your upload speed to your download capability.
Download time examples:
The below data show tests completed by Giganet based on the following broadband speeds: full fibre download speed based on 900Mb/s provided by Giganet. Ultrafast download speed is based on the national average.
|FILE SIZE||ULTRAFAST DOWNLOAD TIME||FULL FIBRE DOWNLOAD TIME|
|1GB||2 minutes 48 seconds||9 seconds|
|5GB||14 minutes 2 seconds||47 seconds|
|10GB||28 minutes 4 seconds||1 minute 35 seconds|
|50GB||2 hours 20 minutes||7 minutes 57 seconds|
|100GB||4 hours 40 minutes||15 minutes 54 seconds|
If you’re calculating the download time for another file, it’s important to remember that 900Mbps stands for 900 Megabits per second (where 8 Megabits are equal to one MegaByte). For this reason, if you’re downloading a 900MB (900 MegaByte) file, it will take you 8 seconds to do this and not one second.
A connection you can rely on
The Fibre optic cables, used to connect you to full fibre broadband are built to last a lot longer than the historic copper infrastructure first implemented decades ago to support our landline telephones. Glass fibre means your connections are much less susceptible to degradation which can lead to faults.
Fibre optic transmits data as light, while copper delivers information as electricity. As light travels exponentially faster than electricity. That means data will travel faster via fibre optic cables than it would through copper. Fibre is also lighter and more durable than copper making it easier to install.
The new technology can last 40 years, while the current copper cable lasts a measly 5 years. So you can expect to have little-to-no dropouts and fast speeds all the time, allowing you to Netflix ‘n’ chill without interruptions.
No peak time slowdowns
With a lot of internet service providers (ISPs) still promoting copper-based broadband connections, there is always the risk that your connection will slow down during peak times of usage. This can mean that both you and your neighbours are contesting for bandwidth which is already under strain from the high usage, to begin with.
Because of the technology behind full fibre broadband, your connection is less likely to drop out or face slowdowns during peak times. This is primarily because the newer fibre-optic-based infrastructure can handle a lot more bandwidth at the same time. Result!
Increases the value of your home
Based on a recent survey conducted by Omedia it was revealed that 33% of estate agents in the UK said high-speed broadband could add up to £5,000 to a property’s value. This is owing to the increased demand for high-speed internet access which full fibre broadband offers. In January 2023, Digital Infrastructure Minister Julia Lopez ensured Gigabit broadband is to become a government standard for new homes in England. Giving landlords another avenue to attract or retain tenants and homeowners a chance to boost property values in the face of a recession. The updated regulations also mean that more people moving into new homes will have a gigabit-capable broadband connection ready when construction is completed, avoiding the need for retrospective work after the home is built, and enabling residents to arrange the best possible internet service at the point they move in.
According to the Omdia survey, high-speed broadband has become the second most important consideration for buyers. In fact, in the Southwest region, estate agents have rated hyperfast internet as their buyers’ top priority, with 34% of respondents saying customers were looking for homes with broadband speeds of at least 300Mb/s or higher.
Top considerations when buying a home:
- Overall size of the property
- Quality/speed of broadband connection
- Number of bedrooms
- Age of property
- Proximity to local transport hubs
- Garden size
Connect more devices
As a nation, we’re connecting more with internet-enhanced technology to our broadband than ever before. This means that your bandwidth is constantly being split between more devices which can present major problems with their efficiency. Thankfully, full fibre and the rise of gigabit-capable connectivity bumps the average download speeds up to 14x faster than the traditional broadband most of us are using. Upgrading from a UK average of 51Mb/s to an incredible 900Mb/s will now give you enough bandwidth to handle all your devices without compromising on speed.
So, whether you’re looking for a speed upgrade or a way to improve the reliability of your service, a full fibre connection could solve a lot of your broadband bother.
Not only is full fibre often more affordable than traditional copper-based services, it simply makes good sense for anyone wanting to keep up with an ever-increasing dependence on good broadband.
If you’re thinking about making the switch to full fibre broadband, Good timing! You can upgrade your broadband today with us.