Sky launches full fibre broadband service

Here’s a look at Sky’s new FTTP or fibre to the premises services, promising to offer speeds of up to 1000Mbps some time soon…

Existing customers are now able to access Sky’s latest fibre-to-the-premises broadband service for the first time. This new service – abbreviated to FTTP – will give millions of customers across the UK access to Sky’s most up-to-date fibre-optic technology, providing an ultrafast internet speed.

Sky Full Fibre Service

Also known as the “full fibre” service, the Sky Fibre Broadband Ultrafast FTTP broadband was initially rolled out to a number of new customers during the summer. The new service was launched soon after Sky announced its new strategic partnership with BUUK Infrastructure.

Even as recently as September, it was still available only to new Sky customers. Currently, it’s accessible by around three million homes in the UK. Now, following the latest announcement, its coverage is set to expand weekly, so it will be on offer to around seven million UK homes by the end of March 2021.

What are the aims of the new FTTP service?

The aim of the partnership between Sky and BUUK is to obtain access to full fibre networks all over the UK. Sky believes this will open up increased growth in the residential market’s new-build segment.

The service boasts average speeds of around 145Mbps. This is up to 12 times faster than DSL standard broadband. Sky says the new service will mean “saying goodbye to buffering”, enabling customers to stream the latest movies, entertainment and TV “seamlessly”.

The FTTP broadband comes with an average guaranteed upload speed of 27Mbps. This is especially beneficial for people who need to use video conferencing. This activity is on the increase as employees are being instructed by the government to work from home again when possible, due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

33,000 homes per week to be added

The number of homes who will have access to FTTP is set to increase by 31,000 properties each week between now and the end of the first quarter of 2021.

In locations where a fibre connection isn’t available to the home, Sky says G Fast connections will be used to provide ultrafast speeds. This means millions of households can still be connected to an ultrafast service, even where FTTP is not available.

Innovations around speed

Sky has reiterated its commitment to new innovations and providing its customers with the most reliable and fastest broadband possible. With the launch of FTTP, the far greater average speeds will mean Sky customers can work from home, download, browse, stream and play online games with ease.

How can I get Sky’s FTTP service?

Openreach’s growing FTTP network provides the service. As it expands, so will Sky’s coverage. You need to do a quick check online to see whether your home can access it yet. This network also services BT’s full fibre option, so it’s likely to host more FTTP services in the future from other Openreach providers.

FTTC available too

You can currently opt for the package using the long-established Openreach fibre-to-the-cabinet (FTTC) network too. This is available to more than 95% of the UK, so if you’re not in an FTTP area, it isn’t a disaster.

As well as Sky Broadband Ultrafast average download speeds of 145Mbps and upload speeds of 27Mbps, there are no download limits. This is all available for £35 per month, at the time of writing. This is more than twice the speed of the slower fibre options, making game lagging a thing of the past.

Currently, Sky hasn’t offered a gigabit broadband package capable of 1Gbps (1000Mbps) speeds just yet, but it’s assumed this will be happening in the near future, since the Openreach FTTP network has this capability already.

What are Sky’s other options?

Sky is reportedly still endeavouring to polish its migration journeys and consequently, a small number of homes in FTTP areas aren’t able to order the new service yet. The provider is aiming to solve this issue as quickly as possible, although it is believed only a relatively small number of homes are affected.

If you don’t have access to the new Sky FTTP services just yet, you’re likely to have the other options for fast broadband available in your area. Sky’s Superfast broadband – with an average download speed of 59Mbps – is available for £27 a month on an 18-month contract.

Compare broadband deals to find the best package for you, depending on your location and what speeds are available. Before you buy, Sky will estimate the speed to the customers’ lines to decide if it’s the right choice.

Sky Fibre broadband packages

Currently, Sky is advertising three broadband packages, starting with Sky Broadband Essential. With an average download speed of 11Mbps, it’s ideal for browsing and email.

Sky Broadband Superfast is advertised as having an average download speed of 59Mbps, making it perfect for downloading your favourite shows. The new Sky Broadband Ultrafast package is advertised as having an average download speed of 145Mbps, making it great for streaming, gaming and downloading as much as you want.

What speed will I get?

Sky has estimated the average times for various activities, comparing its three options. For example, downloading a typical album of ten songs takes an average of 36 seconds on the basic Sky Broadband Essential link. On Sky Broadband Superfast, it takes six seconds, but only three seconds with Sky Broadband Ultrafast.

The different times for downloading an on-demand TV show with a size of 406Mb are four minutes and 55 seconds, 52 seconds and 17 seconds respectively. Downloading an on-demand movie with a size of 858Mb has respective times of 10 minutes and 2 seconds, one minute and 49 seconds and 58 seconds.

Are phone calls included?

The latest Sky broadband packages include an option for internet calls, using new home phone technology being rolled out across the UK. This means your home phone works through your broadband line, plugging straight into the hub, rather than a traditional phone socket.

Working from home and spending more leisure time online, gaming and streaming freely, looks set to be an increasingly hassle-free experience in future, thanks to the spread of Sky’s FTTP broadband service.