Edinburgh to become UK’s ‘largest gigabit city’

Around 7,000 businesses are set to benefit from lightning quick internet speeds after a project to upgrade Edinburgh’s old copper wire telephony system with fibre optic cables nears completion.

The capital is set to become the UK’s ‘largest gigabit city’ next month as a 150km ‘pure fibre’ network is due to be fully installed.

50-100 times faster than UK average

More than 150 engineers have worked on the project at its peak and 100km of cabling was laid in the last 12 months alone, taking the current total to 126km.

Upon completion, the network will provide a future-proof alternative to the city’s capacity-constrained copper network, whilst offering connectivity at gigabit speeds (50-100 times faster than the UK average) to around 7000 businesses. It will also reach over 300 public sector sites including schools, libraries and office buildings.

UK’s largest ‘Gigabit City’

The project is being delivered by leading pure fibre infrastructure provider CityFibre in partnership with Commsworld, the Edinburgh-based telecoms firm.

James McClafferty, CityFibre’s Head of Regional Development in Scotland, said: “Reaching 100km is a significant milestone for the project, which has been a truly collaborative process, working with our partners, Commsworld.

“Spanning 150km, which stretched out would take you from Edinburgh to Aberdeen, the completed network will establish Edinburgh as the UK’s largest Gigabit City which is a real coup for its businesses and services.”

CEO of Commsworld, Ricky Nicol, said: “Edinburgh is asserting itself as a leading digital city on a global scale – and to be a part of that is particularly exciting. CityFibre has delivered on its promises – and has given Edinburgh a highly enviable cutting edge network infrastructure, far exceeding the capabilities available prior to its work.”

Ultrafast Wi-Fi in the theatre

Amongst the most recent businesses to be connected to Edinburgh’s Gigabit City network is Edinburgh’s Festival Theatre. As a result, it is now able to offer ultrafast WiFi to guests and conference attendees.

Iain Ross, Director of Finance and HR at The Festival and King’s Theatres, said: “When faced with the failure of our original supplier to provide a dedicated fibre network to allow us to host a major conference at the Festival Theatre, we turned to CityFibre and Commsworld who have delivered impeccably across all areas.”

“They ensured our public WiFi network was installed in time and as a result, we were able to provide an outstanding service to over 800 attendees, each using multiple devices. We have no doubt that the Edinburgh Gigabit City project will be of major benefit to Edinburgh and businesses operating in the city, and are delighted to have found such reliable and focused partners to provide exceptional public WiFi in our theatres.”


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