So what changes with fibre optic broadband?
In short, the cable. The cables are no longer made of copper. They’re now made of plastics and glass. These new fibre optic cables don’t suffer in the same way. Speeds are maintained along them and they don’t suffer from interference issues.
However, what has changed in most cases so far is the cable from the exchange to the green box on the street. The cable from the green box street exchange to your house is still copper! This is known as FTTC (fibre to the cabinet) broadband.
With this you’ll still suffer speed reductions the further you live from the box.
This also explains why you see broadband speeds quoted as ‘up to’. The ‘up to’ speed assumes you live next door to the street cabinet.
So, again for example, the speed next door to the cabinet may be over 75 Mbps but that will fall to around 10 Mbps if you’re three or more kilometres away.
Superfast broadband speeds of 300Mbps are now being offered by some suppliers, while some providers are now claiming they can achieve 1Gbps. How?
This superfast broadband is known as FTTP (fibre to the premises) broadband. Quite simply they eliminate the copper element so that it is fibre all the way to your home.