The Go Digital project in Newcastle Upon Tyne has removed the wraps from its first cabinet as it works to improve superfast coverage in the city with the aim of 97% with superfast speeds by summer 2015.
The new cabinet serves properties in Wyedale Way and checking reveals that as of 2nd July cabinet 98 is still listed as expected to be taking orders by the end of July 2014. So it is a little confusing for people in the press release from BT to talk of the cabinet going live, we are chasing up, it may simply be a delay in the databases updating.
"This first phase of the project will make it available to around 1400 premises in the city over the coming weeks, and local people who choose to sign up to a superfast package will find huge benefits.
For instance, they’ll be able to stream high-definition movies and music far quicker, access public services more easily and video chat with family and friends around the world on Skype.Cllr Ged Bell, cabinet member for Investment and Development for Newcastle City Council
As part of our checks we have produced a map of the estimated speeds for the area where only cabinets 98 and cabinets 63 are not live as yet. Cab 98 is the one mentioned in the release, but cabinet 63 which is at the top of Waverdale Avenue appears to be on the Go Digital plans but no estimated date is showing on the checker yet.
Looking at the Newcastle Upon Tyne area we can see 55% of properties have coverage from Virgin Media and if the Go Digital infills all the gaps in the commercial coverage from Openreach i.e. where Virgin Media is not an option we get a figure of 95.7% will have access to a 30 Mbps or faster service, or 97.1% if you work to a 24 Mbps target figure and just 0.5% receiving a speed of 2 Mbps or slower. Around 3.5% of lines are exchange only, but since some of these can get Virgin Media superfast broadband, hence why the final figure is so high.
Update 9pm The problem with cabinet 98 which serves properties in Walker but is on the Wallsend exchange not accepting orders yet should be fixed on Thursday 3rd July. We will update once we see the BT Wholesale checker accepting orders.