For some weeks we have seen people anticipating how much faster their fibre to the cabinet product from Openreach will run, and with the database updates taking place on the 28th and 29th January 2012 people will be able to receive an estimate that reflects the adoption of VDSL2 Profile 17a which can run at up 80 Mbps downstream, and up to 20 Mbps on the upstream.
We should emphasis that no lines are going to start running at over 40 Mbps, the trial to unleash people is still underway. Those providers taking part in the FTTC 80/20 trial will be able to add a lot more people to the service from Monday 6th February 2012 when the final pilot prior to full product launch commences.
As providers may not be ready to sell an up to 80 Mbps service, they have the option of capping estimates at 40 Mbps downstream and 10 Mbps for the upstream. The Openreach system will only produce a single set of figures, i.e. the number will be for the ANFP ADE17 plan. For those who have FTTC already, those getting close to 40Mbps now will see the largest improvements, but slower lines may still see some improvement, but it will be incremental rather than a simple doubling of speed.
The BT Wholesale checker can be used to get an estimate of what is possible using FTTC if it is enabled in your area. The checker works best when you supply a telephone number, estimates based on postcode are known to be less reliable. The Openreach estimates that BT Wholesale use are generally worst case scenarios, with most people exceeding the estimates, which is in contrast to ADSL and ADSL2+ estimates which have often proved difficult to exceed. In some situations Openreach are estimating speeds slower than what is possible over ADSL2+, in this case the actual speeds should match or exceed that of an existing ADSL2+ service.