Nearly 29 million households will be served by G.fast technology by 2021, according to a new report by analyst house Ovum.

The research, commissioned by BT and Australia’s National Broadband Network (NBN), suggests the technology will become a mainstream solution following its commercial launch next year, with 330,000 installations slated for 2017, rising to 11.5 million in 2021.

Ovum reckons three percent of the global fixed broadband market will be supported by G.fast between fibre distribution points and private buildings.

It predicts particularly strong take-up in Europe, where BT, Swisscom, Deutsche Telekom, Telekom Austria and Proximus have already announced plans to make use of the technology.

“About 11 percent of broadband services in Western Europe may be delivered via G.fast within five years, with a number of major markets already including the technology in their upgrade plans,” it said in the report, entitled Gigabit Networks.

XG.FAST, an extension of G.fast developed by Nokia Bell Labs that uses a wider frequency range and targets increased throughput over shorter copper lines, will enable service providers to take DSL-based broadband "to an entirely new level", said Ovum.

Openreach, BT’s local network division, is working on the largest G.fast field trials in the world, delivering speeds of up to 330Mbps.

The trial has recently been expanded to cover around 140,000 homes and businesses in the UK.

Openreach is expected to launch commercial G.fast services next year, and has 12 million UK premises pegged to use a mix of G.fast and fibre-to-the-premises (FTTP) technologies by the end of 2020.

However, rivals continue to accuse G.Fast proponents of sweating its copper assets rather than investing in more future-proof technology, such as FTTH.

[Read more: Openreach customers continue tit-for-tat broadband spat with BT]

Clive Selley, Chief Executive Officer at Openreach, said: “We have pioneered G.fast in our labs, driven the global standards, and have been working closely with our communications provider customers on the trials, so we’re very excited that it’s time to start rolling this technology out nationwide.

"The great thing about G.fast is that allows us to deliver affordable ultrafast speeds to customers quickly and at scale.”

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