Entanet have announced Tuesday 15th July as the launch date of their new 21CN based ADSL2+ broadband services. Up until now, the service has only been available on a trial basis using Wholesale Broadband Connect (WBC), however from Tuesday the service will be available to anyone on an ADSL2+ enabled exchange.
Enta have put in considerable investment to build out their network to the twenty 21CN POP's around the country which will enable Enta to provide the service in a most cost effective manner. Nine of these 21CN nodes will be connected at launch, with the remainder expected by the end of September.
Pricing for the 21CN based services of ADSL24, an Enta reseller, were released about a month and a half ago and give an idea of the rough pricing that should be expected. Andrews & Arnold, another ISP who took part in the WBC trials are expecting to finish the trial at the end of July and launch services immediately. Other providers not involved in the trial will take longer to provide services due to the lead time of ordering the necessary interconnects and services from BT, and the testing required before launching services to end users. Plusnet have indicated a cautious approach and are expecting to start trials with customers in the autumn, hoping to avoid any problems that might occur by jumping in head first.
Interestingly the pricing of the new services is lower than existing IPStream connections (although there has been changes to Enta's 'peak' period definition) which would indicate the cost savings that can be gained, although until WBC is available on a more widespread scale, service providers will have to support the costs of running both the old and new services side by side. This will of course help widen the 'digital divide' often mentioned in the press as some areas are able to get new faster services whilst others on long lines may suffer with a fraction of that speed for some years to come. This is to be expected with the scale of such a product upgrade, and is similar to the staggered roll out of the original ADSL broadband services which started in 2000.