A broadband package has been launched in Hong Kong, offering voice, video and data services over a Gigabit fibre-optic connection to the home.

Hong Kong Broadband Network, a subsidiary of City Telecom in Hong Kong, is now offering its bb1000 symmetric 1Gbps service for the residential market. The fibre-to-the-home service will initially be available to 800,000 households.

The fast broadband service is aimed at home office workers, at a premium price of HK$1,680 a month (US$215) for unlimited access. Other packages available include bb100, which offers a symmetric 100Mbps, and bb10 at 10Mbps, to address multiple service segments and price points.

“Whilst legacy carriers may rely only pricing, HKBN, with our Next Generation Network, is now offering both world class service and world class value to the community of Hong Kong.” said Ricky Wong, chairman of Hong Kong Broadband Network.

With fibre-to-the-home, the entire route from the network centre to within the home is connected by optical fibre. In other cases, fibre-to-the-building provides access over conventional network cable in the customer premises.

HKBN has been developing its fibre network and now covers a million households in Hong Kong, with over half a million subscribers to voice, broadband and IPTV services. Its backbone comprises 400 fibre-optic cores, capable of carrying 2,000Gbps, which could be upgraded to a capacity of 64,000Gbps.

Hong Kong and Japan are currently the only territories that can deliver Gigabit broadband services.

This enormous bandwidth provides an indication of the potential for converged communication services over internet protocols, including IPTV. While most broadband services still offer slower speeds than most office networks, there is no reason to assume that with next generation networks that Gigabit speeds will not be available in the future.