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Over 300,000 homes in Northern Ireland now enjoying the benefits of fibre broadband

Press Release   •   Dec 18, 2017 11:48 GMT

35% of homes and business in NI connected to fibre broadband

Belfast, 18th December, 2017: BT today announced that over 300,000 homes and businesses in Northern Ireland are now connected to BT’s open access fibre network and enjoying the benefits of high speed internet access.

Businessman Seamus Morgan from Rathfriland, who owns SM Shoes, was the 300,000th customer to get connected to Superfast* Broadband, which now enables him to receive download speeds of up to 80 Mbps and upload speeds of 20Mbps.

Commenting on the benefits that fibre broadband has brought to his business, Mr Morgan said:

“Given our rural location, our access to fibre broadband has been vital in ensuring the continued growth of our business in recent years.

"The vast majority of our business has now moved online but this would not have been possible without our efforts on social media – all of which is enabled by Superfast Fibre Broadband. We now have a member of staff dedicated to the website and social media, uploading product photographs and managing social media feeds, like Snapchat and Instagram.

"We have worked hard to develop a community of over 30,000 followers on Facebook and regularly run special offers which we want to share with our customers across Northern Ireland, the Republic of Ireland and the rest of the UK - in real time. With Superfast we’ve really gone up a gear and it’s made a huge difference.”

With high speed fibre broadband, photos and videos can be uploaded to the internet in seconds, IP telephony and HD quality video calls can be used to stay in contact with colleagues, customers, family and friends; while it is possible to download an entire music album in about eight seconds and a feature length movie in around two minutes.

Garret Kavanagh, Acting MD of NI Networks at BT said: “We’re delighted to have reached this important milestone, enabling even more homes and businesses to avail of improved broadband speeds. In some cases, we’ve been able to take customers from speeds of less than 2Mbps up to 330Mbps which makes a phenomenal difference to the end user.”

“As Mr Morgan’s experience proves, there are huge benefits to be gained by adopting the technology and I would encourage everyone to check if they can avail of the service, which can easily be done by logging on to www.nibroadband.com.”

In addition to its current joint broadband programmes with the Northern Ireland government, BT recently announced a £20 million investment in a major expansion of Ultrafast** Broadband to towns across Northern Ireland, which will predominantly involve the deployment of Fibre-to-the-Premises (FTTP)*** technology - capable of providing Ultrafast Broadband speeds of up to 1Gbps.Roll-out of this latest phase of the network will begin immediately and run until March 2019.

Anyone interested in getting fibre broadband can choose from a wide range of broadband packages from a number of communication service providers who use BT’s open access fibre network. For more information on how to get connected visit www.nibroadband.com

Ends

Notes to Editors

* Superfast broadband In the UK is defined as a connection with download speeds of 24Mb or above.

** Ultrafast broadband services are defined as offering download speeds of 100Mbps and above. A single HD movie stream typically requires 5Mbps.

*** Fibre-To –The-Premises (FTTP) is a pure fibre connection, which involves the provision of a fibre optic cable from the telephone exchange to a home or business.

For further press information please contact:

Rosy Billingham, PR Manager for BT in Northern Ireland on 028 9021 4174 or 07968 904635 and email rosy.billingham@bt.com