Telecoms giant Vodafone has earmarked Portugal as the latest European nation to receive a large investment in ultrafast broadband.
The UK-headquartered firm today announced a tie-up with Portuguese firm NOS Fibre to deliver cutting-edge internet to 80 per cent of Portugal's households.
Some 4m properties in Portugal will be able to access fibre to the premises (FTTP) broadband, similar to that provided by the likes of Virgin Media in the UK.
In September Vodafone made a €2bn (£1.76bn) commitment to building an ultra-fast internet network in Germany.
Vodafone has said it will invest in ultrafast networks in the UK if it can find partners to share the cost.
Most of the UK's fibre network links street "cabinets" to one another. Around 1.1m, under five per cent of UK houses are directly plugged with fibre cable. Instead, the final few hundred metres to households are connected using copper wiring, something that treasury minister Andrew Jones was critical of earlier this year.
We may even think we’ve got fibre broadband. But actually, we’re often still relying on old copper wires for the final bit of the connection to our homes, and some of these – I’m not joking – date back over a hundred years.
Vodafone currently delivers FTTP services in Portugal to 2.7m customers through a combination of its own network and reciprocal arrangements with third parties. Today's deal means around 2.6m homes and businesses will benefit, around half of which will be new to Vodafone.