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The research firm Point Topic has published four maps showing the likely rollout of next-generation broadband access across the UK over the next few years.
The maps, published on Thursday and reproduced here with permission, are intended for use by local and regional governments, as well as by those tracing potential gains in property prices and developing marketing strategies for broadband-related products, Point Topic said.
This first map combines the data on the other three maps. The red patches show the areas where BT intends to roll out fibre access by the end of 2012. The pink patches show planned deployments by non-BT networks, such as H2O's Bournemouth deployment.
The other colours on the map show the density of demand for high-speed broadband access across the UK, ranging from high density (dark green) through to low density (grey).
According to Point Topic, this map shows that BT's planned next-generation access (NGA) rollout "falls a long way short of covering even those areas where NGA should be economically attractive even without subsidy".
"The contribution from altnets [alternative, non-BT networks] looks quite limited at the moment as well," the authors wrote. "Thus about 60 percent of the UK population have no prospect of getting NGA before 2012, and maybe for much longer."
The company did not include cable in its survey. However, it noted that cable coverage tends to coincide with the green areas of high demand, and said Virgin Media's 50Mbps cable network provides a "competitive alternative to NGA".
This Point Topic map shows the fibre-access deployments to which BT has committed itself.
The research firm has issued predictions of the extent of BT's NGA rollout, based on announcements made by BT Openreach.
According to these predictions, 7.4 percent of the UK population — or 4.52 million people — will be able to get fibre-based broadband access via BT's network by the end of 2010. By the end of 2011, that figure will be 16.3 percent, or 10 million people.
By the end of 2012, Point Topic estimates, 34.8 percent of the UK population, or 21,350,000 people, will be covered by BT's fibre rollout.