Rutland Telecom have hailed success in getting crucial data from BT which they had up until now refused to release. The information held by BT Openreach details which properties are connected to each street cabinet providing phone and broadband services. This will allow companies like Rutland Telecom to work out the best locations to site its equipment for sub-loop unbundling, which allows providers to offer fibre-to-the-cabinet services to rival those from BT. Rutland Telecom are also keen to see the adoption of duct and pole sharing as this would enable them to run fibre cheaply from the local street cabinet to end user homes.
"Only now will we be able to tell which premises is linked to which street cabinet and then we can target those cabinets which have businesses on them which are suffering poor speeds and who are paying high prices to BT. The whole community will benefit if we can adopt this approach. The significance of the release of this data should not be underestimated.
BT Openreach should be a facilitator of all this but unfortunately that is not our experience. It took 8 months for Rutland Telecom to fight for the basic post code data which we secured for the benefit of industry in 2009. They tell us it will take at least 3 months to extract this latest data from their database (23 million lines of CSV format files) so in total it will have taken us 2 years to get to the position we wanted to be in. They have agreed to supply smaller areas [region by region] on request and so we have already put our first request in."David Lewis, (MD) Rutland Telecom
The data in question was previously only available on a case-by-case basis but Rutland Telecom had been trying to get access to a more automated system which Openreach claimed was not economically viable.
"Following discussions with industry on their exact requirements we will now be providing this data on a regional basis to help smaller players better plan for their broadband roll-outs. The extent of our fibre roll-out across the UK means that this is a major undertaking, so it will be a few months before this data is available."BT Spokeswoman