Eir’s fibre broadband reaches almost 1.2m Irish premises

25 Jan 2024

From left: Eir CEO Oliver Loomes, Open Eir Wholesale MD Maeve O’Malley and Pure Telecom head of operations Jonathan Long. Image: Chris Bellew/Fennell Photography

Eir has connected about 200,000 premises to its fibre network since February 2023 and claims to be on track to reach 1.9m premises by the end of 2026.

Open Eir, Ireland’s wholesale telecommunications operator, has hit a new milestone in the roll-out of its nationwide fibre-to-the-home (FTTH) network.

The company – which is part of the Eir group – has managed to connect almost 1.2m homes and businesses to its fibre broadband network. The company said its fibre roll-out will bridge connectivity gaps in Ireland and ensure widespread access to high-speed internet.

The boost marks an increase of about 200,000 premises compared to February 2023, when Eir said more than 1m homes and businesses were connected to its FTTH network. Open Eir Wholesale MD Maeve O’Malley said the new milestone means that “almost 3.2m people” now have the opportunity to connect to the company’s “future-proof fibre broadband”.

“This achievement reflects our dedication to providing cutting-edge technology and enhancing connectivity for communities across Ireland,” O’Malley said. “In today’s digital age, a full-fibre network is not just about connectivity; it’s a cornerstone for Ireland’s economic growth.

“We are focused on ensuring new housing developments also have access to fibre broadband with the introduction of a specialised team working to deliver on our commitment to connecting for a better Ireland.”

The Irish telecom provider has committed to rolling out its gigabit broadband network to 1.9m premises in Ireland by the end of 2026. This will represent 84pc of homes and businesses in the country, while the remaining 16pc will be covered by National Broadband Ireland.

“It takes meticulous planning, technical expertise and a dedicated team to bring such a transformative infrastructure programme to fruition,” O’Malley said. “I am exceptionally proud of our team of 1,000 engineers who have worked relentlessly to bring high speed broadband to 1.2m homes and businesses across Ireland.”

Eir has invested significantly into building the network. Last year, the company said it expects to spend €250m per year until the end of 2026 to meet its commitment.

A report last October claimed Eir’s fibre network had the most reliable broadband speeds in Ireland. But earlier in the year, the company reported a slight drop in its broadband customer numbers, along with an increase in mobile and TV customers.

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Leigh Mc Gowran is a journalist with Silicon Republic