Fibre optic broadband is faster, more reliable, and can handle greater amounts of data than traditional copper wire connections, revolutionising the way we use the internet. But when it comes to fibre, there are two main types: FTTP and FTTC.
Fibre to the Premises
FTTP, or Fibre to the Premises, is a fibre optic connection that goes all the way to your home or business. This means that the fibre optic cable is connected directly to your property, allowing for the fastest and most reliable internet speeds available. With FTTP, you can experience speeds of up to 1 Gbps (Gigabit per second), which is incredibly fast and ideal for heavy internet users, such as those who work from home, gamers and those who frequently stream videos or download large files.
One of the key benefits of FTTP is that it is not affected by the distance between your property and the fibre optic exchange or environmental changes. As the fibre optic cable goes directly to your property, there is no signal loss, interference or other factors that can affect traditional copper wire connections. As a result, FTTP is the fastest and most reliable type of fibre optic internet connection available.
However, there are some downsides to FTTP. The main one is that it can be expensive to install. As the fibre needs to reach every customer’s property rather than just one street cabinet, deploying it can be a complex and time-consuming process. Additionally, another downside is that currently not all areas have FTTP available, so it may not be an option for everyone. See our Project Gigabit webpage for how we’re working with suppliers and government to extend coverage of fibre broadband in County Durham.
Fibre to the Cabinet
On the other hand, FTTC, or Fibre to the Cabinet, is a fibre optic connection that goes to a street cabinet or distribution point in your neighbourhood. From there, a traditional copper wire connection is used to connect to your home or business. This means that the speed and reliability of your internet connection can be affected by the distance between your property and the cabinet or distribution point.
With FTTC, you can experience speeds of up to 80 Mbps (Megabits per second), which is still significantly faster than traditional copper wire connections. It is also less expensive to install than FTTP, as the fibre optic cable only needs to be installed to the cabinet or distribution point, rather than directly to your property.
However, as mentioned earlier, the speed and reliability of FTTC can be impacted by distance. The further your property is from the cabinet or distribution point, the slower and less reliable your internet connection may be. This is because the traditional copper wire connection used for the last leg of the connection is more susceptible to interference and signal degradation than fibre optic cable.