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Virgin Media to Piggy Back on BT Lines

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Virgin Media will be able to use BT’s telegraph poles to extend its own network, following a ruling by Ofcom forcing BT it to open up its infrastructure to competitors.

The cable company had tried to come to an agreement with BT over sharing its network earlier this year, but the move was not successful. The Ofcom ruling however, has forced BT’s hand and Virgin Media will now be able to extend the reach of its fibre optic network to a further three million potential customers. This will extend its reach from 12.7 million to 15.5 million homes.
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Virgin currently has been offering up to 50Mbits/sec over its network for nearly two years, while BT is starting to roll out its BT infinity service, which offers up to 40Mbits/sec download speeds.

“This is an important step that rightly focuses on opening up areas of the country not already served by super-fast broadband, removing one of the hurdles that make such developments near impossible at present,” the company said in a statement.

“However, we now need to ensure the price demanded for access to poles and ducts does not limit the ambitions of getting next-generation connectivity to those people living outside our towns and cities.”

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