Will FTTP on-demand be available from 18th March?
The BT Wholesale price lists are showing that the much talked about FTTP on-demand product has prices that come into effect on 18th March 2013, suggesting it may be available to retailers from that date. The on-demand product that offers you the chance to future proof your broadband connection and say goodbye to all the connection variability that comes with xDSL products, alas at a price.
Update 11:45am: While the price list takes effect from 18th March, we have been told that the early market deployment will not start until the end of March 2013.
Back in December 2012 an estimate of £1500 for a property that is 500m from the fibre aggregation point (which will usually be fairly close to your green street cabinet) was released. The new price list confirms the fixed £500 connection charge, and gives prices for six different charge bands which are in addition to the fixed fee.
|Charge Band||Price Range|
|1||£1 - £200|
|2||£201 - £500|
|3||£501 - £1000|
|4||£1001 - £3000|
|5||£3001 and above|
Hopefully once the launch date approaches we will see more information on pricing and worked examples so that people can get an idea of how much their connection would cost and be ready for the price tag once their chosen retailer informs them what Openreach will want to deliver them a pure fibre connection.
The first person to order FTTP on-demand in a street will not be shouldering the full cost of getting that the shared components. As we understand it the first connection in a street will not have to pay the full cost for fibre tubing, blowing, a fibre splitter and fibre manifold. How the costs for these components is shared out is down to the accountants and will be modelled and is the key to the success of FTTP on-demand and whether it will be a political tick box product, or a real game changer that encourages other full fibre providers and investors to up their game to the next level.
The key thing at this stage is that people should not panic over high prices that can be estimated using the excess construction charges that appear on BT Wholesale price lists because those costs assume one person is ordering and paying for everything. BT Wholesale is taking a commercial risk by not charging the full cost to the first customer in a street, in the hope that others will subsequently order the service. Therefore until the first fully worked examples and live orders are placed all we can say on price is that the £1500 estimate for a 500m connection and it is possible some retailers may add their own charges for acting as the go-between during the order and installation process.