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TalkTalk Launches Full-Fibre Plans in 4 New Cities

Households in Cambridge, Leeds, Leicester and Stirling are now able to sign up to TalkTalk’s Future Fibre plans, as the budget ISP expands its presence on CityFibre’s and Openreach’s FTTP networks.

Currently, CityFibre’s independent gigabit-capable broadband network reaches more than 650,000 premises, with one million connections targeted by the end of the year. Meanwhile, Openreach’s FTTP covers 4.8 million premises.

TalkTalk is a wholesale partner on both networks, with full-fibre plans already available to households in Aberdeen, Bolton, Milton Keynes and Peterborough, Bournemouth, Doncaster, Adur and Worthing, Ipswich, Inverness and Coventry.

Now TalkTalk is launching the packages for households linked to either CityFibre or Openreach in four new cities: Cambridge, Leeds, Leicester and Stirling. TalkTalk points out that internet usage in the areas has soared as a result of the coronavirus crisis—up 47% in Cambridge, 42% in Leicester and 39% in Scotland between January 2020 and April 2021—and that full fibre delivers greater speeds and reliability.

Prices start at £32 per month for 150Mbps or £35 per month for 500Mbps, on 24-month contracts. The pricing is the same whether you’re connected to CityFibre or Openreach, but you’ll see symmetrical upload speeds with CityFibre, while upload speeds will be significantly slower on Openreach’s full fibre.

Jonathan Kini, Managing Director of TalkTalk Direct Business and Consumer, said: “We believe fast, affordable, full fibre broadband should be accessible to all. This has been brought into even sharper focus by culture changes resulting from the pandemic. We’re thrilled that people across Cambridge [and Leeds, Leicester and Stirling] can now benefit from the UK’s latest fibre technology thanks to our new Future Fibre packages.” 

Of course, TalkTalk isn’t the only ISP selling plans on the networks and some rivals are making full use of the gigabit-capable infrastructure. Vodafone, Zen Internet and Giganet sell tariffs on CityFibre, although availability depends on your area. Meanwhile, BT, Sky and others retail plans on Openreach’s network.

Both Openreach and CityFibre have recently heightened their ambitions in the full fibre race. Openreach has upped its target from 20 million premises to 25 million by December 2026, including 6.2 million addresses in villages and market towns. The division of BT is spending £15 billion on the rollout.

Meanwhile, CityFibre has teased that it may increase the target for its £4 billion rollout from 8 million households to 10 million by 2025. While CityFibre has focused on urban areas so far, it has suggested it could compete for rural deployment contracts under the government’s £5 billion Project Gigabit. Project Gigabit will fund full-fibre connections to the hardest to reach 20% of UK premises.

Lauren Smith
Lauren Smith

Lauren Smith has worked as a journalist and copywriter for most of the last decade, covering technology, energy, and consumer rights, in the US and UK.

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