Purebroadband Says Wireless Broadband Can Compete With KCOM In Hull

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Purebroadband secures backbone deal with CityFibre, boosting speed and capacity of wireless network

Hull-based Purebroadband says a new £500,000 backbone deal with CityFibre will allow its wireless broadband service to compete more effectively with KCOM, the dominant fixed line communications provider in the East Yorkshire city.

CityFibre’s dark fibre will power Purebroadband’s wireless masts, increasing capacity and boosting speeds to a level comparable with KCOM’s Lighstream superfast broadband service.

BT and Virgin Media do not operate telephone or broadband services in Hull due to KCOM’s historic advantage in the city. As a condition of its licence renewal in 1914, it was required to purchase the local telephone infrastructure.

Lack of competition

KCOM Kingston Communications white phone boxAlthough competition authorities have ruled that KCOM offers wholesale access to its network within the market range, the cost of providing services to a potential 200,000 residential and broadband customers has not been deemed economically viable.

Nexus has offered a rival telephone and Internet service in Hull since 2009, but the general perceiption is that KCOM has a monopoly in the city, with Purebroadband hoping to capitalise on what it perceives as “grumblings” from the business community.

KCOM, along with BT and Virgin Media, signed a letter to Ofcom this week, warning that any regulation that would allow rivals to access their networks would harm the quality of service offered to businesses and potentially increase costs.

“More and more residents and businesses are looking for an alternative to Hull’s incumbent operator and our services are a perfect high-speed option,” said Joe Tandey, operations director at Purebroadband. “By upgrading our backbone with dark fibre from CityFibre, we will be able to offer an even better broadband service to our existing customers as well as accelerating our customer acquisition programme in Hull.”

Gigabit network

CityFibre operates a number of Fibre to the Premise (FTTP) networks across the UK and recently completed the first phase of a joint-venture with Sky and TalkTalk in York that could be expanded nationwide in order to offer rival infrastructure to BT’s Openreach.

The Hull network already supports Three and EE’s backhaul and is designed to support future requirements from businesses, the public sector, mobile operators and data centres.

“We are seeing increasing interest from Service Providers to accessing businesses and consumers in Hull,” said John Pulley, head of city sales at CityFibre. “CityFibre now provides a long overdue and credible infrastructure alternative in the local market, increasing competition and driving better services for all customers.”

UK Broadband also offers wireless broadband in a number of towns and cities, most notably in London, where it operates under the ‘Relish’ brand.

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