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Chris Bryant MP calls for Openreach to be hived off
Monday 24 August 2015 10:35:51 by Andrew Ferguson

The Digital Britain we sit in now is not just the creation of Openreach, it has is the result of decades of regulation and a constant nibbling around the edges as Oftel and Ofcom regulated to allow competitors to try different business models. The previous Labour Government also created the Digital Britain movement with an ambitious due to an incredibly tight time scale for every one to have access to 2 Mbps by 2012 - though at the time of the 2010 election there was no actual plan in place to deliver this and it took until December 2012 for the first FTTC area to go live from the subsequent BDUK process that the coalition settled on and this is still working towards its goals.

Fast forward to 2015 and we now have Chris Bryant who the is MP for Rhondda and shadow secretary of state for culture, media and sport appears to be backing the idea that Openreach should be split off citing in a Telegraph article that 'Yet (The Government) they have already missed their initial deadline of May 2015 and shifted it back by two and a half years to December 2017'.

The problem is that the 90% superfast target has not actually shifted to December 2017, it can be argued that we have missed the May 2015 target, but everything is pointing towards passing the 90% figure in January 2016, which while late is nothing like December 2017. The December 2017 figure refers to the phase 2 target of 95% superfast coverage and in the phase 2 work while it is still dominated by BT offers have started to win contracts.

To some extent we are stuck in the middle of this row since we started tracking the coverage spurred on originally by campaigners who insisted that the 90% target was impossible. The Universal Service Commitment target is an interesting one as we believe that for the UK just 1% of premises can only get 2 Mbps or slower over a fixed line connection, or put another way around 300,000 premises. In the crucible of Lancashire which has some of the hardest working and campaigning FTTH people on the planet, the BT/BDUK project combined with commercial coverage means 90% of the county have the option of a 30 Mbps or faster connection (90.7% at 24 Mbps) and just 0.5% are under 2 Mbps - of course if you are one 2,500 to 3,000 affected then you will be complaining loudly (Openreach FTTP coverage is at 0.29%, B4RN that is not in the figures is around 0.2% but does cover some of the USC areas).

Looking at the shadow secretaries own constituency the 2017 target is already met at 96% with the option of a 24 Mbps or faster connection (95.2% 30 Mbps) and USC coverage is 0.9%.

We hope we are not considered part of the government spin machine as we have no desire to be, and we are area that some of our coverage articles carry an awful lot of statistics but these are only included to help inform and avoid the PR spin going completely mad and without some independent monitoring of the roll-out it would be too easy for flowery language to be used to hide areas where a project is not performing so well.

So in summary for those that have not been helped by Openreach or the BDUK process Digital Britain may appear an abject failure and these people are increasingly vocal as one would expect, but the reality is that we are significantly better off than 3 years ago and if Virgin Media and TalkTalk along with others deliver what is promised we will have 300 Mbps available to two thirds of the UK and 940 Mbps FTTH to one third with in a couple of years even if Openreach was to vanish.

Comments

Posted by Michael_Chare about 1 year ago
It is easy to be disgusted with BT Openreach's failure to provide a service of even 2mbps to some areas, and the way BT would rather spend money on football rights. What is not clear to me is how this situation would be improved by splitting off Openreach, and all the complexity that would be involved.
Posted by 961a about 1 year ago
If the figure of 300,000 premises is correct then it would be far better and cheaper to create a specific plan to create a set of solutions to be applied on an individual basis. The idea of starting to mess about with Openreach in an effort to fix this small number is likely to delay rather than advance progress.

An objective that needs government action as a matter of urgency, affecting far more of the population is the need to complete the mobile phone infrastructure, where little seems to be happening. Far too much of Ofcoms new map is glaringly white and shows little sign of changing
Posted by Blackmamba about 1 year ago
Hi Broadband Watchers.
As Thinkbroadband data is being updated daily the Surrey results are starting to get stable EG Surrey moved from 95.0% at 24 meg down to 95.1% over the weekend this will be effecting the lower results greatly due to the time lag on the 2 meg scenario %. I would think Openreach is starting to see the top of its workload and will be starting to stop spending and gearing back.
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) about 1 year ago
@blackmamba Surrey is just one part of the UK, so dangerous to extrapolate in terms of spending and guess work on gearing back.

Look at coverage trends for other areas, not levelling off yet.
Posted by chilting about 1 year ago
It is for Chris Bryant, and others, to actually prove that splitting BT would benefit the customer. Until, or if they ever, do that it is difficult to see why a company as successful as BT should be radically changed especially with OFCOM making sure BT don't step out of line.
Posted by ValueforMoney about 1 year ago
Unfortunately BT Group has created a rod for its own back. It's insistence on imposing 44 discrete confidentiality agreements. It's mis-representations on investments and costs does make anyone who choose to sit on the fence look complicit.
The continued pretence that BT has spent £3bn on 50,000 cabs/paths has not been challenged by Gov or Ofcom. If it was it would be become quickly apparent how little capital BT has contributed to the rural project. It remains a rural project as gap funding if enforced as part of the state aid measure would make it so.
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) about 1 year ago
@valueformoney If you have the proof that the commercial roll-out was massively under budget then time to hawk it around the press and get substantial coverage and kudos for exposing a billion pound fraud on BT investors.

The 44 individual contracts alas was not a BT Group decision, but the way they had to bid individually for each contract, rather than a single contract for the UK.
Posted by gerarda about 1 year ago
Whatever way you try to spin it the objective of 90% superfast and 100% 2Mbps by May 2105 has been missed and its the worst served areas that still miss out.
Posted by ValueforMoney about 1 year ago
@andrew, BT told PAC in 2013 that Framework prices included all savings from the commercial programme, but NAO found in January 2015, the Framework budgets had been inflated by 38%. The latter finding has been Maxwellised.
BT group lied large and the project has suffered as a consequence in terms of the resource applied and near zero cost reporting.
The £3bn issue has been reported and even informally acknowledged but our institutions struggle with dealing with the consequences.
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) about 1 year ago
@valueformoney Well if you could be so kind to supply the worked costings and they stand up to scrutiny/checks we would be happy to run with it and ask for BT to comment on why they have differing figures.

The NAO report while suggesting lower costs per cabinet, is not fully transparent on what is and is not counted, or on what actual cabinets the report is based on.
Posted by ValueforMoney about 1 year ago
@Andrew Under £2.5bn was reported by Iain Livinstone - '18months early and comfortably under budget' is in the BT PLC transcript. 18 months of capitalised labour is significant. Turning off FTTP is significant.
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) about 1 year ago
@gerarda I don't believe I am spinning it, we have previously acknowledged the May date slipping, but to say it has slipped to 2017 is wrong.

The USC is interesting since with satellite vouchers the way various areas are already going and the EU independently calling it a job done then surprised .gov is spinning it even more.
Posted by ValueforMoney about 1 year ago
@Andrew The total average costings have been reported by the NAO with references in the Oxera report, so what you need is aleady part of a public record, not one person's opinion. You see and report the underspends and the more recent and welcome but late initial contribution of £129m.
How much more is there to come? A great deal more as no more than 10 individuals inside BT decided to abuse its market position in a fundamental way. It continues in the interaction with counties and government?
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) about 1 year ago
So that was a Q2/2013 figure and since then more commercial roll-out has taken place.

Got the link to the BT transcript then.
Posted by AndyCZ about 1 year ago
@ VFM - As I have said to you countless times before, look through the accounts and you will see the investment in fibre (capex + opex) has been 2.3bn.
Posted by ValueforMoney about 1 year ago
@Andrew The Worchester and thus BDUK state aid guidelines approving aid for 1 premise in a postcode is shocking, as is permission to change planned commercial rollout without reference to some offer of compensating invesment. The Aug 18th missive from BDUK that they will pay for the extra line cards costs where capacity is exhausted is another shocker. All need fixing if the rural economy is to receive what is possible.
Posted by Blackmamba about 1 year ago
Hi Andrew Staff.
I take your point as Hants is only 86.3% at 24 meg 2 k from my home in Surrey and this I feel will improve greatly as their contract ends date ?. The two Exchanges Liphook,Headley Down ( Hants ) have been covered with FTTC and been in service for the last 6 months+
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) about 1 year ago
Care to link to this BDUK missive of the 18th.

And on NAO yes they talk of averages but my reading was that this was a sample of cabinets, then extrapolated across the population of cabinets. Rather than someone sifting thousands upon thousands of invoices.
Posted by TheEulerID about 1 year ago
Another thing that is worth pointing out is any slippage is against the government target date and not (in general) contractual dates. Much of that slippage came down to delays in and complications in passing all those EU state aid rules. That said, if it had started earlier, then resource contention with the commercial roll-out would have been a constraint.

In any event, it's not obvious how a separate OR would proceed any faster given constraints on resources. OR still have to operate commercially within constraints dictated be expected income (doiminate by regulated pricing).
Posted by TheEulerID about 1 year ago
@VFM

The NAOs report raise none of the those issues. They acknowledged the nature of the tender incentivised BT to make pessimistic assumptions about takeup as they were responsible for any downside risk. In that sense BT re-risked themselves. However, there is no evidence BT inflated invoices.

The claw-back process was designed to recover over-subsidisation and that is what we are seeing. BT have now adopted a more optimistic commercial model and returned funds on that basis. True it will increase their coverage, but you imply something faudulent with no evidence.
Posted by ValueforMoney about 1 year ago
Slippage is a function of resource. If there was a shortage of money, then this could be excused. But there is not shortage of funds in the process.

Slippage would be still be forgiven if those excluded could be put on a snag list. But this not happening either as the BT/LA relationships are dying from lack of trust. This is driven by no fewer than 3 individuals in BT Group.

Posted by ValueforMoney about 1 year ago
@Euler I did not say invoiced, its the modelled costs which created the allowable cost budgets which reduced the need for a direct BT capital contribution.
However Wales are paying proxy costs which shows BT's original intent.
NGA costs are counted within the Wholesale Residual Market which is not subject to charge control.
Posted by ValueforMoney about 1 year ago
@Euler - Clawback was designed for excess take-up not as a substitute for its direct capital contribution.
Some money is coming back, but more is needed to balance the books should an investigation be called. The latter however unlikely should not be ignored.
Posted by themanstan about 1 year ago
@VFM

If you had 44 projects to bid for each individually, you have a commercial model which provides costs (scaled of course), do you cost each bid based on winning all the bids, some, most or just on the cost of that bid.
Posted by ValueforMoney about 1 year ago
@themanstan this is an excuse, not a reason. The arguement will not hold, given the evidence (or gambit) relied upon at PAC and NAO and the detail of the original 12XX cabinets delivered in NI.
You use costs consistent with the principals of state aid and not attempt to use confidentiality agreements to hide the excesses.
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) about 1 year ago
@valueformoney Looking at the layout in Northern Ireland it is a very different network and demographic than the UK as a whole, so more spending is going on still to bridge the wider gulf between fibre passed and superfast passed.

As for evidence of the 12XX in NI, what page/appendix does it give anything beyond a 1 line summary? e.g. cabinet and premises served and cost to deliver.
Posted by csimon about 1 year ago
I think though the consultation about OR is more genreal, not just fibre issues? For example, response time to faults and new provisions. I may be an isolated case (!) but faults take between 3 and 5 weeks to fix (just had one now that took 20 days) and phone line/ADSL not operational approx 1-2 months per year. Have put in order for fibre a month agao but not a peep since. Providers unable to extract info from OR. Neighbours who go with BT Retail as provider get much better service.
Posted by ValueforMoney about 1 year ago
@andrew seek out BT NI owns presentations online and the PR confirming 70% of cabinets were outside Greater Belfast . The population is less, more sparse but the solution components are the same. The subsidies not only covered FTTC but BET as well. UK will be more expensive c14% according to Sean Williams but no BET is deployed, something he did not appreciate at PAC.

Posted by RuralWire about 1 year ago
@Andrew - Interesting figures regarding the percentage and number of premises with access to less than 2Mbps. BT Group in their written evidence submitted to the EFRA Committee, dated November 2014, put the figure at 3% (about 800,000 premises) and estimated around 1.5% (about 400,000 premises) by the end of the current BDUK deployments.
Posted by RuralWire about 1 year ago
@gerarda - Regarding the 2Mbps USC, George Osborne (Chancellor of the Exchequer) and Elizabeth Truss (Secretary of State for EFRA) announced last week that "By the end of 2015, access to standard broadband will be available to anyone unable to get a service of at least 2Mbps. This will be made available through the option of satellite broadband, which will have the capability of delivering superfast speeds for those that want them." A case of uptake low, churn rate high?
Posted by themanstan about 1 year ago
@VFM

So are you saying that the 44 bid projects are not independent of each other?
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) about 1 year ago
@ruralwire yes aware of others figures, and am going through various checks and all too often the figure is decreasing.

Northern Ireland is seeing significant changes and a lot of WBC ADSL2+ has appeared in UK which has helped a little too (not a lot for 10km lines, but those are thankfully rare).


Posted by ValueforMoney about 1 year ago
@themanstan the delivery if c30,000 BDUK cabinets across 44 bids contain the same compoents, using the same efficient supply chain as BT's commercial programme. The variation that might exist in terms of the USC largely gets ignored as BT does not have the means to create much variation. Contractually independent but it is the same solution set within a commonly constructed Framework working within a single state aid measure.
Posted by Blackmamba about 1 year ago
Hi VFM.
If you are talking about slippage this was caused in Surrey by the lack of plastic ducting which cascaded the problem to roadworks openings and to power provision on the cabs this is the disadvantage by working to just in time method and speculated enabled dates on service to the customer. This also changes costing dramatically
Posted by themanstan about 1 year ago
@VFM

I don't see an answer to the question I asked.
Yes, they use the same components, but are they contractually linked or not?
Posted by Blackmamba about 1 year ago
Hi Rurial Wire.
The 2 meg % is so misleading because most customers are not using the best ISP,s to get over the figure of 2 meg and are been drawn by the cheap options or they have a fault on their system.
Posted by RuralWire about 1 year ago
@Andrew - Good to see that you reckon that the percentage/number of premises with access to less than 2Mbps is steadily decreasing. Slow and painful progress, but progress nonetheless.
Posted by Somerset about 1 year ago
@VFM - 'approving aid for 1 premise in a postcode is shocking' Details please.
Posted by Somerset about 1 year ago
@BM - 'not using the best ISP,s to get over the figure of 2 meg' Like who?
Posted by ValueforMoney about 1 year ago
@themanstan, They are linked as much as you wish to make them. BT changes one variable in its model and it can be applied to all contracts. EU or BDUK amend an intrepretation of state aid and that is applied to all contracts.
Legally separate, but they are fuctionally equivalent in all essential purposes.
Posted by RuralWire about 1 year ago
@Blackmamba - In certain specific circumstances, a good ISP might be able to get a customer over the 2Mbps threshold whilst others might fail to do so, but sometimes the length of the line to the home or business is too long to be capable of delivering a 2Mbps service. Even the best ISP in the world can't defy the laws of physics.
Posted by gerarda about 1 year ago
@RuralWire - I hope Suffolk CCC does not try to fob me off with satellite vouchers after 3 years of no service and with all the council tax and general tax I have paid to improve the 70% of people who did not want to be improved
Posted by ValueforMoney about 1 year ago
@Somerset - See Worchestershire OMR pdf for confirmation, notes 2 and 3 page 6 - WWWombat was kind in pointing it out. Many other LA had confirmed guidance verbally.
Posted by ValueforMoney about 1 year ago
@andrew - what additional BT commercial rollout and where? Folklore is 19m and then the resource switched.
The only formal info is the reduction in planned commercial footprint evidenced in the Phase 2 OMR's! These are the cabinet areas mapped in blue in Sussex, Suffolk and just about everywhere, 'conditional white' marked in Blue. We do not see new commercisl areas mapped.
Posted by Somerset about 1 year ago
@VFM - link to OMR please.
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) about 1 year ago
@valueformoney Still seeing a small number of cabinets going live that had long delayed dates from the commercial programme and still others waiting to have the work done too.

For a start you can look at 65 London Wall, which is VDSL2 in basement
Posted by Blackmamba about 1 year ago
Hi Rural.
I do agree with your statement and hope that Openreach will beable to get over the problem very soon by providing regeration units or G fast all the best to you if you have this problem.
Posted by themanstan about 1 year ago
@VFM

I think we need a simple model for analogy. As you keep wanting to link bid costs.

44 householders want boilers replacing, plumber bids on all 44 jobs.

The plumber has just done a job for a housing association for 44 boilers in one job lot.

Does the plumber bid using the price for 44 boilers or the cost of individual boilers.
Posted by GMAN99 about 1 year ago
He clearly doesn't get it themanstan or doesn't want to get it
Posted by Blackmamba about 1 year ago
Hi VFM.
I have also Cab,s with dates booked into 2016 and they are standing but I have a feeling that some of the customers are going to be fibre to the home and they are still in the Comercial section with long lines. These long lines could be covered by Katie's phase 2 option OMR so not paying for the whole Cab by using fibre overhead.
Posted by Hubz about 1 year ago
and of course Virgin and TalkTalk will willingly Wholesale out those new networks to encourage competition, right. right? guys....
Posted by ValueforMoney about 1 year ago
@GMAN99 ans @themanstand it is £1.7bn in state aid, and thus the basis of the claims to calculate the incrmental cost have to be the same.
Posted by WWWombat about 1 year ago
@vfm 1
Worcester's approval of classifying a postcode as white for a single premise is, IMHO, hugely creditable. This incentivises complete deployment over incomplete.

But making a single premise "white" does not guarantee that it passes tests for value for money. One premise alone won't pass. One premise in a postcode, plus a 100 more in neighbouring ones might become enough to get subsidy approved and work started.

Declaring areas as white is but a single step in the whole process. Don't make it appear to be more than it is. Otherwise you just look to be flinging mindless propaganda.
Posted by WWWombat about 1 year ago
@vfm 2
The modelled costs don't reduce the need for direct BT contribution. They might reduce it temporarily (until a build-completion true-up) *if* payments are made based on models, but from the look of the South Yorkshire & Norfolk contracts, this isn't true of the framework contract.

That means most LA's hand over subsidy based on actual expenditure - with added confirmation that none of the money is for an "up-front" payment.

On this front, you continue to bark up the wrong telegraph pole.
Posted by WWWombat about 1 year ago
@vfm 3
Clawback isn't just for excess takeup. It is also used for excess capital contributions, and excess "non-broadband" income.

Plus, the contracts seem to scale clawback lower in cases where BT provide more of their own capital - incentivising a better "investment ratio".

Looking more at the contract terms for "investment ratio" suggests there are means to ensure that BT invests what it said it would.

And, to mix clawback with capital spending ... the contracts require BT to put any capital underspend into the investment fund or to adjust any milestone payment to compensate the LA.
Posted by TheEulerID about 1 year ago
@WWW

Indeed, each of the contracts will be different on the amount of gap funding required, partly because the costs will be different according to circumstances (longer fibre runs, more difficult power etc.) and, secondly, because there will be differences in the number of customers per cab and so on. Without looking at individual contracts to look at the exact formula it's simply impossible to generalise. Only auditors have access to that data.
Posted by themanstan about 1 year ago
So the competitor plumber Fuji Stu has managed to get 22 of the 44 jobs on the basis of a superior future proof product.

The plumber now has to make a loss on the boilers, as he can only bill the 22 boilers at the 44 boiler price...

This is really basic procurement VFM... where does incremental costs come into a independent bid system? You are actually adding contingency into the bids by suggesting this. But BT has already said to PAC and NAO there is no contingency in the process.
Posted by themanstan about 1 year ago
BT would have to have bid and said we will charge X if we win A number of bids, and Y if we win B number of bids and Z if we win all the bids...
Posted by TheEulerID about 1 year ago
nb. what the hell is the problem with declaring a single post codes as "white", even if it has only one property? Cabinet footprints are not confined to single postcodes (far from it) and even FTTP infrastructure has got localities which won't honour postcode boundaries (albeit they will, of course, end to be associated with clusters of buildings).
Of course, whether an isolated premises gets enabled or not is a matter of costs. Postcodes were designed for delivering post, not as telecoms boundaries.
Posted by themanstan about 1 year ago
@TheEulerID

Hangover from the GPO days, I suspect it still drills down deepinto BTs DBs and would break things if removed?
Posted by galacticz00 about 1 year ago
Do you think the 300000 people with less than 2 Mbps are pleased to read that companies are rushing to deliver 300Mbps to the chosen few? Those that have get more those that haven't are increasingly left on their own because for the government and local authorities it has become just a numbers game and not about an equitable provision for all.
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) about 1 year ago
As for the chosen few the increased roll out from Virgin will help some and things are improving weekly.

So don't expect the 300,000 premises to be happy at all, thats why i continue to cover what the projects are getting up to

Of course until its 100% at a speed no one can agree on we will find people annoyed
Posted by Coolio_Wolfus about 1 year ago
Well there is one way to 'persuade' providers (mostly BT) to consider fibre to all homes (/cabinets) instead of copper all the way...

The government, Public Accounts Committee and Ofcom should make them cut line rental by 50%/66%/75% on all lines not connected directly to fibre (ftth/fttp) or a fibre enabled 'local' cabinet (fttc).

That may persuade them that fibre is the better option, if only to let them have their rip off line rental.
Posted by ValueforMoney about 1 year ago
@Euler ID - but there is no evidence of gap funding in operation. There is only evidence of BT receiving up £100m in state aid a quaerter for approximately 2,500 working cabs a quarter.
Apart from the recent model adjustment of £129m where has the capital contribution been?
It is pointless to discuss gap funding if there is no evidence of BT's capital.
Posted by ValueforMoney about 1 year ago
@ Euler ID ..And single premise in a single postcode where the others overbuild Virgin should at least have a marked reduction in susbidy or further adjustments in the BT model to force an appropriate contribution..
Posted by Blackmamba about 1 year ago
Hi Broadband Watchers.
The Exchange/switchboard did often originate in the Post Office and the bounrdry was generated by the transmission distance from the switchboard to the longest line on the radius. The lenght of line was determined by cable size eg 70 lb C/copper. Line resistance 850 ohms I recall. over 1 mile.from this you can see the Post Code numbering evolved. When the line resistance was increased from 850--1500 ohms big problems for broadband.
Posted by Somerset about 1 year ago
@BM - 'you can see the Post Code numbering evolved'. Please explain.
Posted by TheEulerID about 1 year ago
@Coolio_Wolfus

That approach would end up in the courts and Ofcom would lose. They simply don't have the power to compel BT to provide copper lines at a loss. It would probably also be illegal under EU law as this is privately owned property.
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) about 1 year ago
There is a precedent in the form of BT Basic which is a low cost means tested (to some extent) voice line rental product, that I believe is available with ADSL2+ or Infinity now.

That is part of the USO for voice.

Any new USO though will be interesting as contracts have now gone to other operators for some parts of the UK e.g. CallFlow
Posted by Blackmamba about 1 year ago
Hi Somerset.
Take the area you know Ewhurst I think you will find from the old records that the post office switchboard was in the village before transferring to it old site UAX and all the long lines were in this area evolved. (Bad for broadband). Homes with no telephone would have been served by telegrams start of post codes for letters covering the main Post Office in cranleigh these Post Codes were generated from Guildford MSO. Many UAX,s were transfered from PO or Shops.
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) about 1 year ago
@blackmamba and the relevance to pushing of high frequency radio signals down and up copper pairs is what exactly?
Posted by Blackmamba about 1 year ago
Hi Andrew Staff.
To provide a service by using a range of frequency at a price that is suitable to the general public on a existing medium that does not effect the cost.
The line lengths does effect the customer (2 meg and under) so higher speeds cost money to get happy customers the higher the better but you will not please everybody what ever the price/service.
Posted by Somerset about 1 year ago
@BM - these mangled words make no sense:

'Homes with no telephone would have been served by telegrams start of post codes for letters covering the main Post Office in cranleigh these Post Codes were generated from Guildford MSO.'

'To provide a service by using a range of frequency at a price that is suitable to the general public on a existing medium that does not effect the cost.'
Posted by Gadget about 1 year ago
just to add some history and light reading for postcodes..."The current postcode consists of two main elements, the outward code (needed to sort from one town to another) and the inward code (required to sort within the town). http://www.postalheritage.org.uk/explore/history/postcode/
Posted by kijoma about 1 year ago
nooo you can't split openreach up yet! , they surely haven't finished spending our money yet? Must be at least a couple of hospitals left to close down so people can get better netflix....
Posted by DrMikeHuntHurtz about 1 year ago
The main issue is regulation, it encourages monopolies, even if Openreach were to be separated, we'd end up with the similar issue we have with the Railways.
Posted by bigluap about 1 year ago
Should Virginmedia be opened up to other suppliers - NO. It is already overloaded in some areas. They provide the Backbone to T-Mobile masts as per the deal between Virginmobile. So opening up would effectively kill it off, only someone that wants this would say yes.
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) about 1 year ago
The masts should be on core fibre rather than the coax docsis network, and as its fibre they control nothing to stop them increasing capacity on their network.

The capacity issues on docsis are often down to the way people use it and the shared nature of that local network.

Or put another way, pay the price and VM will find Gigabit uncontended for you in their fibre backhaul network.
Posted by WWWombat about 1 year ago
Virgin's unwillingness to invest in their access network, the proper solution to over-utilisation, should never be a reason to avoid a requirement for open access. If that happened, they'd deliberately overload it!

I have mixed feeling about splitting Openreach, but I think the worst outcome would be then leaving Virgin as the sole large-scale vertically-integrated supplier.

If we, as a nation, truly think that an independent Openreach is a benefit to the nation, than divesting the VM access network would only enhance that benefit - either merged with OR, or competing.
Posted by fastman about 1 year ago
somerset

ewhurst covered by cranleigh 6,18,19 and 20 all covered by commercial programme in 2012 in think
Posted by AspieMum about 1 year ago
If Openreach vanishes who will enable the rest- the ones Talk Talk & Virgin won't touch? I'm only 4 miles from a town & less than 10 miles from a city & close enough to Virgin enabled territory for leafleters to mistakenly post 'you are in are area' virgin leaflets through my door but when I contacted them my estate was too expensive to connect to their network. Talk Talk do exist here but are they just using openreach installed equipment & would they pay for their own?
Posted by AspieMum about 1 year ago
3G is non-existent here even officially but we are supposed to get a good 4G signal but in reality indoors at least there is a tiny unreliable signal upstairs tops.We aren't in a properly rural area either.
Posted by AspieMum about 1 year ago
Openreach needs to exist (either as part of BT or seperate) and there needs to be funding to cover improving those areas Virgin etc won't touch. Perhaps we should charge them for being so selective?
Posted by AspieMum about 1 year ago
galacticz00 not so long ago I was one of those left behind ones. I can tell you all the superfast for the select few business is frustrating, annoying & anger inducing.
Posted by AspieMum about 1 year ago
Also if Universal Credit is to be digital by default then the government has a responsibility to ensure a low cost broadband option with at least basic useability & reliability is available to all especially with libraries closing.
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