Broadband News

Openreach to roll-out FTTH to 3,650 homes in Swindon

BT announced on Wednesday afternoon that the next phases in the Wichelstowe development in Swindon will be getting Openreach FTTP as the native broadband connection.

"Wichelstowe will be a high quality sustainable development with a focus on creating a great place for people to live, and we are pleased to be working with Openreach to make super-fast fibre available to every home in these new developments in Middle and West Wichel.

Swindon Councillor Mary Martin

The roll-out is aiming to cover some 3,650 premises including both flats and houses with work starting in 2016. Openreach already has 200,000 premises where FTTP at download speeds of 40 to 330 Mbps (upload ranges from 10 Mbps to 30 Mbps) are available depending on what people decide to order, and once combined with the 40,000 - 45,000 premises covered by KC tips incumbent led FTTP coverage in the UK to 0.9% and with the various other FTTP/B providers the UK coverage is getting close to 2%.

The East Wichel part of the Wichelstowe development already has FTTH via one of the alt-nets in the form of IFNL and is a key part of the estates ethos where no external aerials or satellite dishes are allowed.

The wholesale install fee for Openreach FTTP is £99+VAT, but this cost is spread across the BT Infinity contract period if people order an Infinity 1,2,3 or 4 package from BT Retail, other providers are able to offer the GEA-FTTP service, but for the average consumer the only other big name is PlusNet who oddly restrict FTTP to existing customers. Exactly why TalkTalk and Sky don't offer the service is a mystery, but given recent submissions to Ofcom calling for branding changes, it might be as important as brand perception.


I don't see the branding issue is any different to FTTC. I think a more likely one is probably the cost of integration of the product into their systems and marketing/sales effort given the relatively small potential customer base. Also, FTTP is often in remoter areas and might not match the topography of their "low cost" backhaul network.

nb. scale issues might well play a part in major ISP usage of altnet wholesale products.

  • TheEulerID
  • over 3 years ago

The fact that Sky/Talktalk don't sell service over FTTP seems really at odds with what they are saying about splitting OR off and what they want it to invest in! It appears to be the same GEA product as FTTC that they buy so shouldn't need that much change in their system stack. It usually occurs at the same handover site as FTTC as well so the backhaul is the same. Not aware of any exchange areas apart from Ebbsfleet that is FTTP only and that may have FTTC at the same handover site as there is no exchange building at Ebbsfleet.

  • jumpmum
  • over 3 years ago

It is about time that planning consent for new housing estates and business parks required at least FTTC and preferably FTTP included.

  • godsell4
  • over 3 years ago

I sussepect the provision and repair experience for gea FTTP are a lot more problematic that for FTTC

  • ribble
  • over 3 years ago

jumpmum that's a very astute view

  • fastman
  • over 3 years ago

How about completing the FTTP rollout to those of us it was promised to several years ago first?

  • beercan999
  • over 3 years ago

beercan the 3650 homes will have been a contract between the developer and operator and will probably have no copper deployed on the site - I assume your a commercially funded FTTP area at no cost to you and only cost to the operator -- that might be your answer

  • fastman
  • over 3 years ago

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