If all network deployments are realised as planned, the number of UK properties with full-fibre broadband will increase from 15.4 million in May this year to 27 million in May 2026, according to Ofcom’s latest Connected Nations report.
Promoting the rollout of high-speed networks is a top priority for Ofcom. Its regulation promotes competition and encourages investment in full-fibre broadband from a range of companies across the UK.
Last month, Ofcom revealed that over half (52%) of UK homes had access to full-fibre services as of May 2023, up from 3% since it proposed rules to boost full-fibre rollout in 2017. This has been driven mainly by the larger fibre operators but also supported by a number of smaller providers across the UK serving individual communities and regions.
Ofcom has collected and collated data from UK broadband firms about their full fibre rollout plans for the next three years. Based on this data, three-quarters (76%) of UK properties could have gigabit-capable services available to them from two or more providers by May 2026, more than double the amount by May this year (30%).
Although much of this planned build is focused in urban or suburban areas, rural areas could also see substantial network upgrades. If all planned deployments are realised, 98% of urban properties would be gigabit-capable by May 2026, up from 81% this year; and 75% of rural properties would be covered, up from 42% in May this year.