You can only get FTTC via the cabinet your line routes through, and the availability of a connection there is not dependent on which ISP you select.
Most ISPs use the BT Wholesale network to get their traffic from the BT Openreach fibre handover node (at your exchange, or sometimes at another nearby exchange depending on the chosen routing for the local BT Openreach fibre network) back to the ISP's own network. The BT Wholesale connection is almost invariably available from the day FTTx service is available, so there is no additional delay in ordering from any ISP using BT Wholesale.
There are a handful of ISPs who use their own backhaul networks rather than BT Wholesale:
- TalkTalk (including, I guess, TalkTalk wholesale)
- Zen (in some cases - though Zen use BT Wholesale if their own network is unavailable)
These ISPs sometimes take longer to get connected to the BT Openreach fibre handover node, so there can be an additional delay for those wishing to use these ISPs.
The most interesting thing will be the output from the BT availability checker
. If possible, use your phone number. If that doesn't work (for example, if your line is currently with Sky or TalkTalk), use the address version. The postcode version is unreliable for FTTx.
Is this output still showing March 31st 2014? This is a placeholder date, and cabinet are often enabled sooner than the placeholder date.
If Sky are giving you an estimate of around 10 Mbit/s downstream speed, it sounds like your line is on an enabled cabinet, but you're a long way away from it. Some ISPs won't sell an FTTC based service unless the estimate is at least 15Mbit/s, which might explain what you are seeing.
Unfortunately, there's no cheap way of taking FTTC from another apparently closer cabinet. This would be regarded as a network rearrangement, for which you'd likely have to pay all the install costs. If this is what you wish to do, it would likely be better to wait for full FTTP On Demand roll out and have FTTPoD - though that won't be cheap.
Edit: extensive clarifying edits to the original second paragraph, which has now been split in two.
Edited by David_W (Sat 26-Oct-13 15:11:36)