National Broadband Ireland pledges to provide coverage to 102,000 homes by 2023

The company behind the National Broadband Plan says it will have served more than 100,000 homes and premises with its new high-speed fiber optic network by the end of this year.

National Broadband Ireland (NBI), the entity set up by US tech tycoon David McCourt to carry out the project, said it was on track to complete the project on time and within budget.

Delivery of the multibillion-euro project has been hampered by delays since its launch more than two years ago and the company has been criticized for missing several early rollout targets.

However, in an update, NBI said it will have exceeded 102,000 of the premises intended to be covered by the state-subsidized plan by the end of 2022.

He also said premises under construction would increase by 43% to 221,000 in 2022, which he said was 40% of the total program catchment area. This area covers more than 540,000 mainly rural households and businesses.

The NBI also reported turnout rates of over 30% in deployment areas that have been active for at least six months.

“Leading indicators give us confidence that this ambitious project can and will be delivered on time and on budget,” McCourt said.

“Our ability to move premises from the construction phases to the commissioning phase is seriously ramping up, meaning users can realize the benefits of the transformational network sooner,” he said.

Service support

NBI chief executive Peter Hendrick said early adoption of the services was over 30% in many initial deployment areas.

“Compared to any national or international comparison, this indicates very high levels of adoption, significantly above initial expectations,” he said.

“At the end of the day, we are confident of an overall stake of around 85% and already have some 50 broadband providers registered to sell services on the NBI network,” he said.

This cross-platform competition, Mr. Hendrick said, would bring significant benefits directly to consumers by ensuring that combined voice, broadband and TV packages offer real choice at competitive prices.

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