The government is under pressure from advisors to make builders lay optic fibre into new homes, or at least the trench and duct needed to carry it, and to stop seeing wireless as a viable alternative.
The call comes from the DTI's Foresight Project, which has £150m to spend on "money-spinning opportunities for new cutting-edge technologies".
"We have to grasp opportunities, not let them slip away," said David Hughes, director of the Foresight Project that targets optical switching as a research area.
"Copper cannot deliver the speeds that people now want," added former Alcatel chairman Peter Radley, an advisor to the project.
"In the future, broadband will have to deliver 200 times today's speeds onto every desk, bringing more broadband to more people any time, anywhere.
"The demand on local networks will be up to 30Tb, which is equivalent to the whole of the US internet demand today."
Radley insisted that this meant fibre in the home. "Developers need to start providing for fibre when they build new homes," he said.
"Every other service - gas, water, electricity - is piped into a new house. Telecoms is the only service not installed."
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