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Standard User ajdroberts
(newbie) Wed 09-Dec-15 12:41:50
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Exchange only village upgrade


[link to this post]
 
Here in Lincolnshire we are towards the end of the 'Onlincolnshire' Faster Broadband project which is just about to choose which properties will be in the final group (90% - 95% of the total) and which will get nothing at all.

Many of those not yet connected are on EO lines, ie not connected via a cabinet, and several miles from the exchange.

For villages I assumed that the usual solution would involve installing a new cabinet, connected to the exchange via fibre, but a recent conversation with an engineer made me realise that Openreach are often not doing this.

Instead, the hardware that normally resides in a new cabinet is being put in the exchange itself so the feed to a village will use the existing copper cables from the exchange which, in our case, are 2 miles in length and riddled with old joints, junctions and bodged repairs that don't work well for a phone line, let alone a long BB connection (mine is at 0.9/0.08 mbps at present).

Bearing in mind the PM's recent commitment to us being able to 'request' 20mbps by 2020, whatever that means, presumably Openreach would by then have to run fibre to a new, nearby cabinet anyway.

As I may be able to put a 'community' submission to the helpful Onlincolnshire project team, can you suggest a couple of technical solutions which might improve upon the 'hardware-in-exchange' solution that it looks like we may well be lumbered with?
Administrator MrSaffron
(staff) Wed 09-Dec-15 12:54:29
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Re: Exchange only village upgrade


[re: ajdroberts] [link to this post]
 
Impossible to say where a cabinet will be placed without knowing the area it is meant to serve

Many EO areas are within 1km of the exchange, but there are also decent numbers further away, and where there are clusters that justify another cabinet we are seeing cabinets installed at some distance from the cabinet. In some areas these new cabs are 50m from the exchange and in others its 5000m

On the USO its 10 Mbps you can request by the way.

Some areas are deploying FTTP to the longer clusters that are too small for a cabinet too, all depends on the projects targets and ambitions.

In short no-one can talk of your odds without knowing the area and what has gone on so far and thus what might be possible.

The author of the above post is a thinkbroadband staff member. It may not constitute an official statement on behalf of thinkbroadband.
Standard User ajdroberts
(newbie) Wed 09-Dec-15 18:09:18
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Re: Exchange only village upgrade


[re: MrSaffron] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by MrSaffron:
On the USO its 10 Mbps you can request by the way.


Yes, of course.

I was muddling all the 20's with the 10:10 campaign to reduce carbon emissions (in 2010) and getting confused by the the promise from No.10 of 10mbps in 2020.

But what's the betting that well before 2020 we'll all be saying 10mbps is inadequate and that we should all have access to 20mbps - and probably more. Especially considering what so many people already get in many parts of the UK, and South Korea / Japan / Hong Kong / Switzerland etc, etc.

[And I've just realised that these top-performing countries all have populations that are highly concentrated in valleys and coastal strips are away from their significant rural but mountainous areas. I wonder where Wales and Scotland figure in the statistics?]


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Administrator MrSaffron
(staff) Wed 09-Dec-15 18:39:56
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Re: Exchange only village upgrade


[re: ajdroberts] [link to this post]
 
A wealth of stats over at https://labs.thinkbroadband.com/local/index.php?tab=2

The 10 Mbps is seen as the minimum and not a target maximum speed, so hopefully many of the solutions used will deliver a lot more, but until USO plans are discussed and developed over the next couple of years its guess work.

Spending public money on nice to have is difficult to justify, on helping to do things like file your tax return online then 10 Mbps should do very nicely and also handle 2xHD video streams too.

The obligation is about setting a minimum safety net standard.

Of course for an individual what matters is what is available in their little patch of land.

The author of the above post is a thinkbroadband staff member. It may not constitute an official statement on behalf of thinkbroadband.
Standard User WWWombat
(knowledge is power) Thu 10-Dec-15 11:52:16
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Re: Exchange only village upgrade


[re: ajdroberts] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by ajdroberts:
and which will get nothing at all.


It isn't yet seen as "nothing at all" - just that funds and plans haven't been set. Part of the reason is because the government seems to be negotiating over new state-aid rules with the EU; this held things up 6-9 months for phase 1 too.

In reply to a post by ajdroberts:
As I may be able to put a 'community' submission to the helpful Onlincolnshire project team, can you suggest a couple of technical solutions which might improve upon the 'hardware-in-exchange' solution that it looks like we may well be lumbered with?


Strictly, the "usual" EO solution is a new cabinet located just outside the exchange - technical regulations prevent VDSL2 frequencies being used within the exchange, so you won't see a "hardware-in-exchange" solution without changing those rules.

Your best approach depends on how much of an independent cluster of properties you are, how many properties, and how the EO cables get to serve you.

A separate cabinet might be best, taking over the job of the old PCP for your village. These "all in one" cabinets have started to be used in Northern Ireland, where they are being used to cover villages that are a long distance from their existing PCP.

If your village is small (<16 premises), an FTTRN node might have been an idea - but BT seem to have given up on this technology (they've certainly given up on telling us about them, anyway).

In reply to a post by ajdroberts:
But what's the betting that well before 2020 we'll all be saying 10mbps is inadequate and that we should all have access to 20mbps - and probably more.


That's a good question, but the answer probably relates to how much video we are watching, SD or HD, and how much that happens in parallel. Multiple teenagers/students will need more.

The 10Mbps figure comes from Ofcom studies, based on both the usability/experience offered to people on one hand, and the total monthly bandwidth used on the other hand. There seems to be a distinct threshold for both aspects at 10Mbps; people with speeds above 10Mbps don't seem to behave much differently until they get beyond 40Mbps.

In reply to a post by ajdroberts:
Especially considering what so many people already get in many parts of the UK, and South Korea / Japan / Hong Kong / Switzerland etc, etc.

The rural parts of South Korea seem to be be getting broadband upgrades around 5 years after the commercial/urban parts. Yes, it is better than we get here - but the urban residents there also get better than urban residents here.

In reply to a post by ajdroberts:
[And I've just realised that these top-performing countries all have populations that are highly concentrated in valleys and coastal strips are away from their significant rural but mountainous areas. I wonder where Wales and Scotland figure in the statistics?]


All countries have their focussed, urban, profitable, commercial areas - and the telcos of the world put most of their effort and resources into those areas. But the news reports of foreign broadband efforts, that we see in the UK , always seem to focus on what their best results are - but not on how the worst areas are.
Standard User ajdroberts
(newbie) Thu 10-Dec-15 13:31:29
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Re: Exchange only village upgrade


[re: WWWombat] [link to this post]
 
That's all very interesting and useful, WWWombat. Thanks very much.

We've just had a parish meeting and because of our possible inclusion in OnLincolnshire's Phase 2 in 2016, and Cameron's 10mbps USO 'promise', we've dropped the idea of paying for a fibre connection through BTs Community Fibre Partnership scheme.

However, as in other arenas such as paying extra, over state funding, for our children's school trips, we would like the opportunity of making a financial contribution towards a better and otherwise unaffordable, technical solution. For example, one that is more upgradeable and future-proofed.

So, if we do make the Phase 2 cut, is it likely that we may be able to influence Openreach's technical solution and maybe pay extra for a better one?

We'd need more than a bit of help from this forum for this, no doubt!
Standard User ian72
(eat-sleep-adslguide) Thu 10-Dec-15 13:34:16
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Re: Exchange only village upgrade


[re: ajdroberts] [link to this post]
 
So, if we do make the Phase 2 cut, is it likely that we may be able to influence Openreach's technical solution and maybe pay extra for a better one?


I would be a bit surprised if they would do this - mainly because it could get incredibly complex in project to then start dealing with a number of 3rd parties negotiating solutions and charges/invoicing (if they allowed it for you then it would open the floodgates). I suspect you will have little influence over what solution you may get in phase 2.
Standard User ajdroberts
(newbie) Thu 10-Dec-15 13:51:28
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Re: Exchange only village upgrade


[re: ian72] [link to this post]
 
Yes, I'm sure you're correct - I'd not want to be involved in such negotiations either.

But, through the OnLincolnshire Project who are allocating public money to fund this roll-out, there might be some way of getting a technical appraisal done to confirm, or otherwise, the overall suitability of the Openreach solution. Perhaps we have to rely on that team to be doing this.

I'm afraid our village's faith in Openreach has long since disappeared (in the context of long-term service quality issues such as our existing BB speeds, disconnection frequency and phone line unreliability).

Edited by ajdroberts (Thu 10-Dec-15 13:52:30)

Administrator MrSaffron
(staff) Thu 10-Dec-15 14:45:55
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Re: Exchange only village upgrade


[re: ajdroberts] [link to this post]
 
Even if just FTTC rolled out, the future of that will eventually involve a premium fibre to the home option, probably not in 2016 but 2017/2018 where an individual can subscribe and pay a chunk of the cost of getting FTTH closer to them....nothing set in stone yet but the architecture will support it.

The author of the above post is a thinkbroadband staff member. It may not constitute an official statement on behalf of thinkbroadband.
Standard User Fastman2
(committed) Sat 12-Dec-15 21:04:04
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Re: Exchange only village upgrade


[re: ajdroberts] [link to this post]
 
so you have an option to do a community funded scheme form Openreach., is that a formal letter or a range cost. -- if a formal letter (that indicates a design and a solution (and speeds probably in excess of 30/40 mbps

Tere no agreement on what the USO might look like , how it will roll out or what technology it could look like and if all of that happens its could be 2020 before its started

so you could thinking you would be getting an apple and what you actually get is a grape
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