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'Fastest ever' broadband could download 44 HD movies in one second

Posting in Technology
Alcatel-Lucent and BT teamed up recently to achieve an incredibly fast broadband speed of 1.4 terabits per second. 

The two communications firms say that this is the fastest broadband speed ever reached using "commercial grade hardware in a real-world environment." 

How fast is 1.4 terabits per second exactly? According to the companies, it's as fast as downloading 44 HD movies in one second. 

That's fast, but what does it mean in practical terms for telecommunications companies? 

As Neil J. McRae, chief network architect at BT put it: "[T]his outstanding achievement demonstrates that BT can easily introduce new features and technologies across our core network maximizing the efficiency of our existing infrastructure."

In other words, it shows that companies still have room to improve their existing fiber infrastructure without making more expensive infrastructure upgrades and overhauls.

The speed was reached on a 410km fiber link.

But will consumers notice any benefits of this advancement anytime soon? Don't count on it. As Oliver Johnson, of the broadband analyst firm Point Topic told International Business Times.

Essentially it's more important for ISPs and consumers won't see any immediate benefits, just that their provider will be able to keep up with their demands. Consumers won't be able to have 1.4 terabits speeds in the near future, certainly not in the next decade.
Photo: Flickr/gerardov

— By on January 23, 2014, 7:28 PM PST

Tyler Falk

Contributing Editor

Tyler Falk is a freelance journalist based in Washington, D.C. Previously, he was with Smart Growth America and Grist. He holds a degree from Goshen College. Follow him on Twitter. Disclosure