110k extra urban Irish homes to get fibre broadband as telco dispute ends

8 Jul 2015

A telco dispute over technical standards that held back 110,000 homes and businesses in Eircom’s fibre broadband footprint from being eligible for connectivity has been resolved.

In May, Eircom reported 1.2m homes are now connected to the company’s fibre broadband network. However, this could have read 1.3m only for a technical dispute between Eircom and other operators.

The dispute was over Eircom’s proposal to deploy an Exchange Launched Very High-Speed Digital Subscriber Line (EVDSL), which other operators like BT said would cause signal interference and affect its ability to deliver broadband.

Eircom is going all guns in rolling out fibre broadband and recently revealed plans to increase its fibre footprint from a targeted 1.6m homes and businesses by 2016 to 1.9m across Ireland by 2020.

According to the Department of Communications’ National Broadband Plan Report, which provides an overview on the progress of plans to connect more than 600,000 homes and 100,000 businesses in rural areas, the dispute has been resolved.

It said ComReg has approved a request from Eircom to change the technical standards, which will allow the 110,000 additional homes and businesses in urban areas to get fibre broadband in the coming months.

According to a ComReg document on the matter, an independent consultant’s report confirmed that there was a risk to other broadband services in “some circumstances”.

After receiving assurances from Eircom that processes would be put in place during the rollout of EVDSL to monitor and fix faults if they arose, ComReg has granted Eircom’s approval to go ahead and connect the 110,000 homes and businesses to fibre broadband.

City fibre image via Shutterstock

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years