Alcatel-Lucent and BT have extended trials of G.fast to a further 2,000 homes in the north-east of the England.

The companies have started tests of the access technology in Gosforth, Newcastle, in trials that will last between six and nine months.

It follows trials initiated by BT in Huntingdon, Cambridgeshire, in August and a pilot conducted by BT and Alcatel-Lucent around Hethersett in Norfolk earlier in the year.

During the test period, G.fast will enable data speeds of up to 330 Mbps, Alcatel-Lucent claimed.

The company said that customers would experience faster HD video download times during the test in addition to new services, including “multiple” 4K television channels.

Further trials are planned for Swansea later this year, ahead of a commercial launch of G.fast in the UK pegged for 2016.

Mike Galvin, MD Service, Strategy and Operations at BT, said: “This is the largest trial of G.fast technology in the world today and extensive research by teams of experts at both BT and Alcatel- Lucent have prepared us well for this exploration into how the technology performs.

“With G.fast, we look forward to opening a new chapter in building Britain’s connected future through the delivery of ultra fast broadband to more people in the coming years.”

Alcatel-Lucent, who is also working with Taiwan’s Chunghwa Telecom to deploy G.fast later this year, is the hardware supplier behind BT’s deployment.

The vendor is supplying access technology including bonded VDSL2, VDSL2 vectoring, service activation and system level G.fast vectoring to the operator.

Cormac Whelan, CEO of Alcatel-Lucent UK & Ireland, said: “The latest analyst predictions say that within five years, something like one million minutes of video content will cross the global fixed or mobile network every single second.

“The demand for broadband has never been greater and is only heading in one direction so this G.fast trial is the right technology at the right time.”

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