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BT to open high street broadband shops
Tuesday 08 September 2009 15:01:05 by John Hunt

BT is to open a broadband shop in Whitchurch near Cardiff this week which will allow people to come in and try out its broadband services. A second store is to open next week in Muswell Hill in north London. Some may recognise the locations, and that is because both stores are located in the areas where BT has been piloting it's new fibre-to-the-cabinet based 40meg broadband services.

"The BT Retail Super-fast Broadband shop in Whitchurch, is the first showcase of its kind to hit Britain's high streets, with another shop planned to open in Muswell Hill, London, next week.

"The showcase shows local people what Super-fast Broadband, currently being trialled in their areas, is all about and enables them to see demonstrations of a range of home and business applications that will enhance their lives."

Matthew Dearden, Marketing Director at BT Retail

Showing people what this new technology is capable of may be a new way to get more customers to sign up or upgrade their connection to a faster service. Readers should remember, that BT aren't the only provider who are able to offer services using the new fibre-to-the-cabinet technology- AAISP connected the first FTTC business user towards the end of July.


Posted by cyberdoyle over 8 years ago
and users must remember that you only get the superfast broadband in urban areas right next to exchanges! the service won't work in most rural areas. False advertising unless it is in BIG PRINT. might build the case for more people realising how slow their home broadband is and more will join the JFDI groups and lay their own fibre to the home.
Posted by john (Favicon staff member) over 8 years ago
High speeds also available if you live near one of the new green cabinets in to which BT are deploying fibre-to-the-cabinet.
Posted by Dixinormous over 8 years ago
Given that they are opening these two stores in areas where they have FTTC cyber I don't think that's a major issue.
Posted by jumpmum over 8 years ago
Cyberdoyle; Superfast broadband is the Openreach product name for FTTC at up to 50Mb, amusingly this doesn't work close to the exchange as it apparently can only be served by remote cabinets due to the UK access network frequency plan. Guarantees 15Mb/1Mb with burst to 50Mb from served Cabinets. YOU need to agitate for a cab upgrade near you.
Posted by chrysalis over 8 years ago
can BT do this legally? demo a broadband service in a shop which I expect will conveniantly have a short line but the service itself will be dependent on line length/quality, so as such may perform nothing like it does in the shop.
Posted by g-bhxu over 8 years ago
Don't see why not.

You get demos of broadband from a USB dongle in a shop.

So where is there any difference?

No doubt the BT shop demos will not be FUPed

Posted by cyberdoyle over 8 years ago
suppose i could ask for a demo shop on my farm on a mountainside? plenty of walkers going past, they could have a demo of a 0.4 meg adsl 'broadband' connection. think I will open one myself. Don't think BT plan cabinets in rural areas. Not enuf profit. Only 40% of population live in 90% of UK land mass. They will only ever get narrowband through copper. The rest will get 'up to' 40 meg, whilst Korea gets 1000meg for £10 a month. And BT still call it superfast and demo it. embarrassing.
Posted by Somerset over 8 years ago
How many will get narrowband? (As in dial up)
Posted by Dawn_Falcon over 8 years ago
Cyberdoyle - They plan 75%. And they've indicated that the 50p levee, if given to them, could make that 90%.

And if we had the demographics, social priorities and culture of SOUTH Korea...
Posted by Dawn_Falcon over 8 years ago
And you have a very, very amusing view of statistics. There are only six exchanges without ADSL outside the Western Isles, and for two of those it's because they're small-area coverage and those areas allready have blanket coverage from other ISP's (in the case of docklands, it's all business premises!)
Posted by Somerset over 8 years ago
The Korea Communications Commission is spending $24 billion to secure 1Gbps access by 2012.

Only large cities in Korea will have access to the top tier broadband. Surrounding smaller areas will still have access to 50 to 100 Mbps speeds
Posted by Somerset over 8 years ago
Seoul - 17,000 people per
Posted by Dawn_Falcon over 8 years ago
So, government funding.
Posted by otester over 8 years ago
When taken in to account the lack of government funding, BT has done quite well.
Posted by Dixinormous over 8 years ago
No Dawn they have never planned 75%, BT have by all accounts stated 10 million premises, less than 40%, most of which will overlap Virgin Media giving a total population coverage of FTTN of between 55 and 60% including both VM and BT.

Sources for that information is BT themselves. I can only surmise you assumed no overlap.
Posted by Dixinormous over 8 years ago
otester - BT have had and continue to have government funding in a variety of ways from tax relief through to bid-less broadband projects

Somerset: the S. Korean government is actually putting up 4% of the costs of the project. Services presently at 100Mbps go to 1Gbps, 1Mbps wireless services go to 10Mbps.
Posted by Dixinormous over 8 years ago
Source for the above incidentally is the Korea Communications Commission. It should also be noted that it applies to all FTTP which is presently 40% of all internet connections in S Korea.

Lastly population density. Seoul 17k people is the only city in S Korea more densely populated than London and there is only 1 other S Korean city more densely populated than Leeds, Birmingham, Manchester and Glasgow, so we'd best move on to the next excuse...

Posted by Somerset over 8 years ago
Where is the other 96% coming from?
Posted by Dixinormous over 8 years ago
Here you go:

So S Korea's BT equivalent, KT, along with SK Telecom and others are putting up 32.8 trillion to the government's 1.3 trillion.

Can't give you a specific breakdown as I don't speak Korean :)
Posted by Dawn_Falcon over 8 years ago
Yea, Dixi. And you can use 4% funding to leaverage commercial loans arround 20% cheaper, for starters. Also, there are considerable other government incentives to create high-speed networks.

NONE of this exists in the UK!

BT had "funding" at-cost for some ADSL build projects, for example. Those areas run at a loss. I am rather puzzled how you think that this amounts to a major boost to their commercial prospects. All of the UK "funding" is of that nature, not "we'll pay for 20% of a project which you can actually get a return from".
Posted by Dawn_Falcon over 8 years ago
And I think you're thinking of the "by 2012" figure, not the "by 2015" one.

And again, look at a density map rather than saying "oh but the density is lower" - comparing just 4 cities is misleading in the extreme.

Also, again, before the FTTH rollout there was no broadband. That's a good, profitable market, and NOT what BT are facing in the UK!
Posted by Dixinormous over 8 years ago
The population density comment was a direct response to Seoul being highlighted at 17k people/ As I'm not advocating rollout beyond major cities it doesn't matter. FTTP to 100% is ridiculous even in South Korea and Japan which is why they just don't do it.

I'm aware of other incentives. Doesn't change that BT have had copious amounts of public cash forwarded to them for internet services through local partnerships. If they thought they would run at a loss (any numbers to verify this?) perhaps they could have just not bid?
Posted by Dixinormous over 8 years ago
Regarding no broadband pre-FTTH, I'm not talking about the original deployment of the BcN but the upgrade. BT certainly are not facing that in the UK I'll agree with you there but not the point, point was they have and continue to get funding.

There are many obstacles to such investments in the UK, I was merely pointing out what the private sector can do if empowered to by a regulator with a brain who cares about infrastructure rather than one that praises themselves for having 200 retail ISPs reselling the same rubbish.
Posted by Dawn_Falcon over 8 years ago
The build funding they receieved was specificly for ADSL, and they certainly are not continuing to recieve it. They agreed to accept the funds and build out to avoid an explicit extension of the USO, at the time. (And the ADSL buildout goal /worked/, there's litterally 6 mainland UK exchanges serving about 1k people not enabled!)

When you run the numbers on the tax, it dosn't add up to a useful amount, especially when you look at their accounts and plug in how much they're losing on LLU (because Ofcom won't allow proper adjustments for inflation).

See, we agree Ofcom are idiots.
Posted by Dixinormous over 8 years ago
Oh there was never, ever, EVER any disagreement on that score :)
Posted by cyberdoyle over 8 years ago
wow, that's a first for this forum, do we all agree that Ofcom are eejits? whoohoo. Nice to all have the same opinion for a change.
Just to stir the pot again, if the UK hadn't had such a fantastic phone network (thanks to the Victorians getting on with the job) we would be running fibre everywhere now like Korea et al.

Instead Ofcom let BT milk the obsolete copper for revenue for fatcat bosses and the shareholders, and then let government say in public that they are building a 'next gen network'. OFCOM do not Get IT.
Posted by Dawn_Falcon over 8 years ago
It's not Ofcom "let" BT so much as once a solid network is in place, you can only expect commercial forces to advance it incrimentally.
Posted by Dixinormous over 8 years ago
Ofcom either did nothing or actively discouraged deployment of new networks and infrastructure, preferring instead to focus purely on competition at retail level which would have happened anyway if competition at infrstructure or wholesale level had been considered at any time.
Posted by Dawn_Falcon over 8 years ago
My contention is that it didn't matter, if they didn't active offer encouragement or funding, things would not of progressed any quicker.
Posted by Dixinormous over 8 years ago
They didn't offer any encouragement and did nothing about business rates, hence the UK's cosy infrastructure duopoly.
Posted by Dawn_Falcon over 8 years ago
Again, I strongly argue that the only encouragement which would of mattered was funding, which is beyond their remit.
Posted by herdwick over 8 years ago
UK 651.3 people per square mile
Korea 1258.5 people per square mile

"lay their own fibre to the home." - keep dreaming, isn't happening here.
Posted by Dixinormous over 8 years ago
Again population density irrelevant, get rid of large swathes of virtually unpopulated areas from the equation and the numbers change a lot.

The own fibre to the home is true though, you'd have to pay various government departments before you could break ground, then pay tax on the bits of string.
Posted by herdwick over 8 years ago
Agreed - 3.8% of the UK land area contains 12.75m or 76.6% of phone lines. Go out to a lower density and you get 94% of lines within 12.7% of the land area.
Posted by Blood-Donor over 8 years ago
I live 323 meters from my exchange and get an average of between 6MB-7MB daily. At peak-times it drops by about ½MB. At the weekend the speed fluctuates between 6½MB to 5MB, evenings included.
Now then, my friend who lives nowhere near as close to his echange only gets between 1MB and 1½MB. So distance from an exchange can make a big difference.
Posted by chrysalis over 8 years ago
"Again, I strongly argue that the only encouragement which would of mattered was funding, which is beyond their remit" Disagree.
Ofcom could have been very tough on isp's advertising and enforcement of services sold regarding burst speeds, effectively forcing dsl isps to either sell faster services or market slower products (this would have created a business case for fibre), instead they had one sole aim and that was for artificial retail competition and at one point were actively discouraging fibre due to it possibly harming the LLU market.
Posted by Dawn_Falcon over 8 years ago
You can have market confusion (or , you could change the laws of physics), then. Neither would change the underlying realities of deployment cost of fibre.

I can't agree there.
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