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Wales proposes areas for next generation intervention
Tuesday 24 January 2012 14:49:00 by Andrew Ferguson

The situation in Wales with respect to next generation broadband (what many refer to as super-fast broadband) is a lot clearer with the release of maps showing where intervention is most needed. The maps show that over the next three years there are no commercial plans for superfast broadband in Merthyr Tydfil, Pembrokeshire, Ceredigion and Powys and in others large areas with no next generation operator at all.

The definition of next generation broadband in use by the Welsh Government is a service of 30 Mbps or faster. In essence they are talking of a service that is the next generation above ADSL2+, which confusingly is regularly featured in the regional press as a next generation service as BT Wholesale rolls out its ADSL2+ service. This roll-out often duplicates the presence of ADSL2+ from providers like TalkTalk (which is available via a wholesale network) and Sky.

The publication of the maps is meant to provide a four week window for broadband operators to come forward and indicate if they are going to invest in any of the postcode areas, detailing timeline, likely number of properties passed and whether the network would meet the 30 Mbps minimum target, plus what upstream speed will be on offer. These responses have to made no later than 5pm on 23rd February 2012. Since this may reveal confidential roll-out plans, there is an option for responses to be kept confidential.


Posted by fibrebunny over 5 years ago
Is Merthyr not the capital of sickness benefit claimants? I don't suppose that encourages investment.
Posted by jumpmum over 5 years ago
Looking at the maps you can see why Fujitsu pulled out of the process, hell of an area to cover with no commercial feedback
Posted by sydfair over 5 years ago
Once again us rural users suffer. I live in Pembroke and my connection speed plods along around 2.2Mbps with no hope of FTTC in the near future. How I dream of speeds around 8meg never mind 30+.
Posted by Enrico21 over 5 years ago
AS BT seems to be the remaining bidder in the Welsh Government (WG) procurement process, surely it’s now in their interest not to reveal their intended roll-out plans.

If no responses received by deadline, what’s next option for WG?
Posted by mikeluff over 5 years ago
Not quite 30, but 21st century network is coming to Pembrokeshire over the next few months. Enablement dates are available on for Haverfordwest, Tenbt, Milford Haven so 20mb on its way. Nothing yet for Pembroke exchange, although I am told most exchanges including Pembroke have had new kit installed in preperation for deployments.
But we need FTTC to get anything decent due to the long line lengths out in the sticks.
Posted by mikeluff over 5 years ago
That should say not quite 30mb..
Posted by welshwarrior over 5 years ago
Hi Mike. I live in tenby and was told by a friend that works for OpenReach that only Tenby has had kit installed so far. I did ask about Pembroke (Pembroke Dock exchange) and that should be done by the end of the year though.
Posted by nickeloi over 5 years ago
I expect companies like BT do not make early promises simply because rural areas are very challenging and full of financial risk.

Personally in my line of work I'm using Pembrokeshire as a case study to investigate how rural areas can best be provided with economical super-fast broadband.

I wouldn't expect to be able to say that everyone could be served, but hopefully I'll find some sort of solution that will at least make financial sense for some of the population. Of course whether or not anything I find out is believed as realistic is another matter altogether!
Posted by nickkcin over 5 years ago
The objective of this is to identify those areas which won't be covered by BT and Virgin with NGA and therefore the WG will then help to pay for NGA going into the areas that aren't part of the plans. Virgin aren't likely to expand much outside their existing areas, as as BT is the only bidder left for the WG money, don't expect them to change their plans. In fact don't expect 100% NGA coverage now either, you'll maybe get 90% and don't expect it to happen quickly either
Posted by mikeluff over 5 years ago
BT is also installing an Ethernet node in Pembrokeshire. That should enable businesses to have faster/cheaper connections (when I say cheaper, obviously that depends on what type of connection you have at the moment, existing could be MPLS etc - I'm not talking broadband).

It was supposed to go live in June last year, still waiting for an update from them on a Go-Live date.

It was supposed to go live in June last year, still waiting for an update from them on a Go-Live date.
Posted by nickeloi over 5 years ago
That Ethernet stuff is pretty darn fast - up to 10Gbps connection between business properties if you want!
(Yes that's gigabits, not megabits)

Posted by elegog over 5 years ago
The W.A.G plans are a shambles In Pembrokeshire ,there is little or no central communication with no opportunity for feed back from the public apart from those 'in the know'90 miles away in Cardiff. My current speed is 0.8mbps from Plusnet down from 1.4mbps & despite 2 visits from Open Reach,they seem unwilling to sort things. Sky is my only faster choice.
Posted by BREWERDAVE over 5 years ago
I'm confused! My "village",Sully, in the Vale of Glamorgan is marked as having 1 NGB operator - but the only service available from our small exchange is BT's ADSL Max - and there are no plans that I can discover,to roll out 21CN/ADSL2+ OR FTTC in the near future, and I can't believe SKY or TalkTalk would be interested in an exchange of 1300 - so who is the 1 NGB Operator?
Posted by mikeluff over 5 years ago
Haverfordwest Exchange users began being jumpered over to BT 21CN last week.
Posted by Markdvdman over 5 years ago
It is unfair to tarnish everyone in Merthyr Tydfil with the same brush! I pay for Sky Unlimited broadband as it is that but I would gladly pay more for FTTC! I know PLENTY on broadband and they pay like everybody else! It probably does not appeal to BT due to the media rubbish portraying the area as hell! It is not and I am proud of the place!
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