Please refer to our FTTC guide here and this excellent article from Mark Heath.
A guy was offered “Faster broadband by BT” ie their sub-15M not-Infinity FTTC service.
Thanks Phil. The FTTC estimate on that line was 10.7Mbps, so it looks as if estimates above 10Mbps will be able to order an FTTC service reasonably easily, “subject to a further line test”. (But only once FTTC has been enabled at the relevant cabinet.) Sadly my own estimate is only 4.6Mbps (pre FTTC activation), and it is at this kind of level that we anticipate it being much harder to find services. Mind you, as Walter points out, there are probably very few people who would bother to upgrade for such a small improvement (from an estimate of 1-3Mbps in my case, under 2Mbps in reality).
It is worth emphasising that we are “flying blind” at the moment as none of our cabinets have an enabled FTTC. We have to rely on the checkers so we note that:-
1. The BT Wholesale checker will show an estimate right down to ridiculous levels of 100 Kbps up and down. This is tantamount to rejecting any realistic service at all.
2. The BT retail checker will refuse to offer any service below 15 Mbps; e.g. a Wholesale speed of 14.5 Mbps is rejected by BT Retail. (Proven yet again just yesterday.)
3. Neither of the BT checkers will provide any data for some LLU services such as a TalkTalk phone number, but the TalkTalk checker will offer estimates.
4. The BT checkers will offer less certain estimates by entering a postcode.
5. Once we have operational FTTCs and are in the real world of faster asymmetric broadband services available for some residents only, we can then offer practical advice.
Re point 2, I guess that’s because the Retail checker is for the “Infinity” service, so you probably have to phone BT sales to find out about the sub-15Mbps service. But as you say, the cabinet has to be activated first. On point 3, where is the TalkTalk estimate data coming from? The BT postcode data, or their own calculations?
Re 2. I agree.
Re 3. My best guess is they use the uplift figure from the BT Postcode data together with their line performance data so they are in effect mimicking the BT checkers. I observe that TalkTalk’s checker on one of their lines provides very similar figures to those that BT provide in a house nearby.
We are very keen to know of all VDSL service installations for comparison purposes, although we won’t publish names unless requested to do so. We hope to build up performance data by roads so we can help the inevitable problem houses and raise complaints for bad roads. Whether BT Openreach will accept such complaints and rectify them is another matter – especially if, as in Horsham Lane’s case, we believe much of the cable is unreliable sub-standard aluminium direct buried un-ducted.
We also want to publish the lower estimator figures when we discover who are prepared to offer services on the poor lines. E.g. at present Barhatch Lane seems to be condemned entirely from the stream upwards.
Ref Item 3 in the May 16th comment, I now observe that the availability checker will provide estimates for LLU lines, presumably in the hope that some users will transfer back to BT.
However if you have been on the receiving end of their disgraceful behaviour in Peaslake Road, you might well wish to stay well clear of such an organisation, even though your ISP has to deal with Openreach upon your behalf.
Richard reports that his current ISP, Sky Broadband, are not yet able to take orders for FTTC services in central Ewhurst (cabinet 20), and are blaming BT for this. But then Sky seem very fond of blaming BT for their inefficiency, see http://www.guardian.co.uk/money/2012/oct/19/sky-trying-broadband-subscribers-patience?newsfeed=true
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