Launch in Utrecht city and region
On 15 October, Ziggo will start providing internet with download speeds of up to 1 gigabit per second to its customers in Utrecht city, Vleuten, De Meern and Nieuwegein, to be followed by Hilversum at the end of November. The national rollout is set to continue in 2020 in cities and regions such as Amsterdam, Apeldoorn, Arnhem, The Hague, Eindhoven, Groningen, Nijmegen, Rotterdam, Tilburg and Wageningen. "Ziggo will thereby have made ‘gigging without digging' available to two-thirds of its Dutch customers by next year”, according to VodafoneZiggo CEO Jeroen Hoencamp, during the Economic Board Utrecht (EBU)’s 'Get Connected' event.
GigaNet enters new phase
By introducing superfast Gigabit Internet, VodafoneZiggo is taking an important step towards its ambition of preparing the Netherlands for the digital future through Vodafone and Ziggo’s powerful GigaNet network. Ziggo has previously run a successful pilot involving gigabit speeds in Utrecht’s Oog in Al district. The time has now arrived for rollout in Utrecht and surroundings, almost three months earlier than initially announced at the opening of the new headquarters in the city.
Unprecedented speed experience
Superfast internet with download speeds of up to 1 Gbps is almost ten times faster than the average 100 Mbps connection in the Netherlands. With 1 Gbps, customers can watch ultrahigh-resolution 4K films and TV programmes virtually without limitation, download very large mega files and play games at super high speed. This means, for example, that a 5GB HD film can be downloaded in 42 seconds, compared with over 7 minutes via the average connection, or that an ultrahigh resolution 20GB 4K film can be downloaded in less than 3 minutes, instead of around half an hour. And that the newest 45GB game can be downloaded in six minutes, instead of the hour required at the speed provided by the average subscription. Moreover, this gigabit speed allows the entire family to be online with several devices simultaneously.
‘Gigging without digging’
VodafoneZiggo is capable of transforming its Ziggo cable network in the Netherlands to 1 gigabit download speeds within two years, without any inconvenience to society or the home environment. Preparations for this have been afoot for a number of years now. The company’s own nationwide network, GigaNet, comprises more than 40,000 km of optical fibre. On average, around 97 percent of the internet signal is transmitted to customers via optical fibre, and 3 percent via coaxial cable. In the words of Hoencamp: “By upgrading the coax part of our network with Docsis3.1 technology, we are no longer supplying superfast internet street by street or neighbourhood by neighbourhood, but are now activating whole cities or regions at once, meaning that customers can experience download speeds of up to 1 Gbps. In this way, we are supplying gigabit speeds to all of our customers without having to do much digging." Moreover, according to Hoencamp, there is plenty of room for further improvement in the fixed fibre optic/coax cable network: “One gigabit per second is only the beginning. Speeds of up to 10 Gbps should be possible over our network within ten years. You might say that our GigaNet is ready for the future."
Catalyst for Dutch digitisation
A digital infrastructure with sufficient capacity, speed and reliability is essential for the Netherlands. “Consumers, entrepreneurs and politicians are demanding fast, robust and accessible internet, so that the Dutch economy can stay one step ahead. Through our investments in the GigaNet network, such as this speed upgrade to 1 Gbps, we are putting our money where our mouth is," said Hoencamp, while announcing the national rollout of gigabit internet in the presence of Utrecht’s mayor Jan van Zanen, representatives of various municipal authorities and prominent figures from the business community.
Ziggo is commencing the national rollout in Utrecht city and its surroundings, with a technical 'soft launch’ to first apply the technology in practice on a larger scale from 15 October. The download speed via the cable from the modem will then be up to 940 Mbps maximum per device. This is the standard maximum of the modem’s Giga Ethernet port. When two devices are connected via the cable, the maximum is 1 Gbps. And if the customer has the right equipment with the latest antennae, it will also be possible to achieve speeds of 1 Gbps through Wi-Fi.
About DOCSIS 3.1:
Cable companies the world over employ the DOCSIS standard for the provision of internet data, voice and video services via existing cable TV systems. In order to satisfy the requirements for higher data transmission speeds, VodafoneZiggo uses DOCSIS version 3.1. This technology represents a huge advance in download and upload speeds, with speeds of 10 Gbps and 2 Gbps respectively being realised. Because version 3.1 is also compatible with the older version 3.0, existing applications will continue to function and the transition to the new standard can be made with ease.
About the modems:
VodafoneZiggo supplies the Giga connection in combination with CommScope (TG3492LG) and Ubee Interactive (UBC1318ZG) DOCSIS3.1 cable modems.
About Gbps & Mbps:
Gigabit per second is a standard unit in the computer industry for data transmission speed. Its symbol is Gbit/s, but it is also frequently notated as Gbps. It is the speed in billions (i.e. giga, or 1,000,000,000) of bits (not bytes) per second.
Mbps or megabit per second is a customary though non-standardised means of describing data transmission speed used in the computer industry. Mbps is the speed in millions (i.e. Mega, or 1,000,000) of bits (not bytes) per second.