Brexit and broadband

Superfast Surrey have stated that the Brexit vote will not have any immediate impact on their next phase, and the BDUK process is likely to continue for the next couple of years at least. Once their “NGA white” or “target white” areas have been approved by BDUK, BT will model further deployments in these areas, and the existing 10 year contractual targets will be changed to reflect what is thought to be possible with the additional funding and claw-back. It is hoped to reach this stage later in the year.

Superfast Surrey have also now admitted that FTTP-on-Demand may not actually be available in Surrey, and have modified their advice accordingly. We are told that offering the service is a commercial decision which cannot be influenced by local government. On this basis, it is unclear why the service is apparently available to order in Wales but not England.

Meanwhile, Openreach and their contractors are still being seen laying more fibre around the county. However, it is not clear how much of this will be extending their GEA network and how much is “private”. Some will be for community funded FTTC, such as the Hydestile project, and some for delayed “commercial” cabinets such as Cranleigh PCP2. Very usefully in this context, I see that ThinkBroadBand (TBB) are now plotting native FTTP coverage:
  • search for a postcode using the search box on the map
  • hover over the little tile icon (above the search box)
  • select “Openreach Native FTTP Postcodes”

Note that FTTC availability in Ewhurst improved very slightly earlier this year. I helped one neighbour where Openreach had attempted but failed to install “fibre” service last year, yet were able to provide this service more recently, improving download speeds from 1 Mbps to 6 Mbps. This availability update also seems to have resolved many of the “condemned” lines, where the service was denied for no good reason, due to an “internal system fault”.

If you have a long line, and have had FTTC for some time, you may be able to improve performance slightly by updating your modem. My 3 year old model was swapped recently during a fault investigation, and although the old modem was found not be faulty, the new one is faster. Until the swap, I had to choose between favoring download, using the old Huawei modem, or faster upload, using the old ECI model. Now the new ECI modem simultaneously matches the maximum speeds I previously recorded for both upload and download. Sadly I do not have a new Huawei to compare, but in any case Openreach recommend using ECI modems in Ewhurst, to match our cabinet equipment. Note that combined modem/routers from other manufacturers are now being supplied as standard, or you can source your own in some cases. At present we are not aware of any modem performing better than the separate ECI or Huawei models supplied by Openreach, but if you have something different, it is probably best to leave it alone.

The satellite voucher scheme has been running for a while now, but in case you missed it, click here for details.

This entry was posted in SCC Broadband Project. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply