toob is Southampton bound with its full fibre roll-out
toob is one of the latest full fibre operators in the UK and they burst onto the scene in March 2019 and is aiming to have built past some 100,000 premises by the end of 2021 with an eventual goal of passing 1 million premises.
The news now is that Southampton is the initial roll-out city and even better we know where in 2019 the first premises will appear and it is around Southampton city centre and registrations are being collected.
The choice of the area for the initial launch is a good one as the core of central Southampton does have a good number of premises without access to superfast broadband. Additionally CityFibre and the Vodafone Gigafast roll-out is eventually set to roll-out in the city.
Once outside this central area almost all premises already have access to superfast and ultrafast services using VDSL2, Gfast and DOCSIS, so getting people to switch will be harder.
To ensure that price is not a factor stopping people from signing up toob is going to keep it simple with just one residential product, a 900 Mbps symmetric service for £25/m on an 18 month contract (after 18 months price will be £29/m). No install fee is mentioned, but they do say there is no line rental charge and with no mention of a phone service it looks like no bundled VoIP service which is no problem for many of our visitors since they'll be using their mobile for calls or be happy sourcing a VoIP ATA on their own, but might lead to a good number of average residential customers wasting money by retaining a copper line rental service. The 900 Mbps download and upload business service will be £50+VAT per month.
As with all broadband marketing there is always some interesting things, and for toob it is the claim 'No slowdown or buffering at any time' which is a very difficult thing to achieve given that while full fibre is immune to intereference and distance problems it does not guarantee uncontended bandwidth once your traffic merges with others and buffering or video drop outs can often be down to the video provider and its data centre. Hopefully the people doing the maths behind how big the aggregation and core network links need to be and external capacity will get their somes right and build a big over capacity factor.