Home
 » ISP News » 
Sponsored

Broadband Delivery UK Issues Strict Guidance for Wireless Networks

Thursday, February 21st, 2013 (11:18 am) - Score 1,042

The government’s Broadband Delivery UK office has released new guidance for local authorities on the use of state aid (public funding) in support of deploying NGA fixed wireless access (FWA) networks. The guidance, much like existing EU rules, makes it possible for wireless ISPs to engage in the process but only under strict conditions.

As it stands today the only operators able to actually bid for public funding under the restrictive BDUK framework are BT and Fujitsu UK, although the latter has effectively withdrawn from the process over economic concerns; not to mention the government labelling any Fujtisu UK contract as “high risk” (here).

The government was last year also forced to admit that its maps of national broadband availability were flawed because they often excluded wireless networks (wifi, fixed LTE etc.) and instead focused almost exclusively on fixed line broadband connectivity (here).

Suffice to say that wireless networks which go hunting for state aid often start off from a position of weakness and, in that respect, the new guidance hopes to provide some much needed clarity.

The Criteria for NGA Wireless Networks

2.2 In assessing projects for State aid approval, BDUK’s National Competency Centre (“NCC”) requires that interim non-wired technologies that are used in NGA white intervention areas must provide the same outputs as those defined for NGA network deployments. Specifically, the NCC will expect to see that the technical solution:

• is capable of providing access speeds in excess of 30Mbps download, not only by reference to theory and technical standards, but also by evidence of calibrated performance measurements of an existing deployment within the area of interest or an demonstrably equivalent deployment in a similar geographical environment;

• provides a doubling of average access speeds in the target NGA intervention area;

• must be designed in anticipation of providing at least ~15Mbps download speed to end-users for 95% of the time during peak times in the target intervention area, as demonstrated by calibrated measurements using a methodology comparable to those used for fixed network measurements;

• must show how the solution would adapt to maintain capability an end-user experience in changes to key parameters such as increased take-up and increased demand for capacity, and be able to show that this is both technically and commercially viable supported by clear calculations;

• must have characteristics (e.g. latency, jitter) that enable advanced services to be delivered e.g. video-conferencing and High Definition video streaming to be provided to end users as evidenced by trials results not necessary obtained within the area of interest; and

• has longevity such that one might reasonably expect increases in performance within the next 7 years.

Interestingly though one of the requirements states that the subsidised solution must be an “interim solution chosen where a fibre-based solution is not yet economically viable, and there shall be a commitment to replace non-wired connections with fibre at a later stage“.. hmm.

Statement on Requirement 2

This requirement ensures that public money is used to support infrastructures that offer the most viable route to full fibre infrastructure; where that goal isn’t economically viable today, any subsidised solution should support this goal eventually (i.e. when revenues increase or deployment costs decrease sufficiently).”

On the one hand we support the fact that full fibre optic broadband services are being taken seriously by the document, yet on the other it’s hard to see how this would work for an ISP whose primary business is with the speciality of fixed wireless provision. The new guidance is based off similar recommendations put forward by the EU (here).

It should however be said that BDUK isn’t the only model for state aid and operators can engage with councils and private funding solutions directly; not that they’ll have much luck there either. It’s also worth remembering that state aid is usually only issued to network developers that can offer an open access network for other ISPs.

Fixed Wireless Technology: BDUK Guidance (DOC)
https://www.gov.uk/../State_aid_guidance_-_Role_of_Fixed_Wireless.doc

Add to Diigo
Mark Jackson
By Mark Jackson
Mark is a professional technology writer, IT consultant and computer engineer from Dorset (England), he also founded ISPreview in 1999 and enjoys analysing the latest telecoms and broadband developments. Find me on Twitter, , Facebook and Linkedin.
Leave a Comment
3 Responses
  1. BT isn’t really ‘open access’ as every ISP is just a reseller from wholesale? There is only one supplier. Openreach.
    We need more suppliers if we want to be classed as open access.
    We need altnets.
    The altnets won’t get funding because the tender process has eliminated them. The tender process was influenced by BT who have courted councils from day 1.
    The altnets could do wifi which will fulfil the specification but to make it futureproof upgrades will be needed. Far better to do full fat fibre, do the job once and do it right, and just use wifi to join the dots until the fibre is dug in. We currently enjoy 30 megabit symmetrical wifi in our valley, but we know we have to move with the times and move on to fibre. Its been fantastic to have internet connectivity through the airwaves for a decade, but now demand is soaring we need more, and the ‘open access’ supplier charges too much. The false scarcity model is what kills innovation. With fibre there is no scarcity, but getting access to a dark fibre is very difficult in some areas, because the ‘open access monopoly’ won’t sell them and their lit charges are extortionate – BDUK should have concentrated on digital parish pumps, and that would have enabled many networks to be built. Instead the money has all gone to cabinets, which will make a few go a bit faster, but this will all come back to bite them when they realise they are at a digital dead end, and the chance to be futureproof has been lost down a copper mine. When will they see the light?

  2. Avatar dragoneast

    A cynic might say it’s designed to suit BT’s use of wireless like the proverbial glove (for which they’ve just bid successfully for LTE spectrum haven’t they?).

    I just observe that if the operational requirement is to allow HD streaming and VOIP, I use both with no problems on a 12Mbps fixed wireless service. But in the Alice-in-Wonderland world of the lawyers, you can’t have one rule for BT and another for anyone else, and the real world only exists on an accountant’s spreadsheet. This search for perfection has given us the present state of the NHS.

Comments RSS Feed

Javascript must be enabled to post (most browsers do this automatically)

Privacy Notice: Please note that news comments are anonymous, which means that we do NOT require you to enter any real personal details to post a message. By clicking to submit a post you agree to storing your comment content, display name, IP, email and / or website details in our database, for as long as the post remains live.

Only the submitted name and comment will be displayed in public, while the rest will be kept private (we will never share this outside of ISPreview, regardless of whether the data is real or fake). This comment system uses submitted IP, email and website address data to spot abuse and spammers. All data is transferred via an encrypted (https secure) session.

NOTE 1: Sometimes your comment might not appear immediately due to site cache (this is cleared every few hours) or it may be caught by automated moderation / anti-spam.

NOTE 2: Comments that break our rules, spam, troll or post via known fake IP/proxy servers may be blocked or removed.
Cheapest Superfast ISPs
  • Hyperoptic £18.00 (*22.00)
    Avg. Speed 30Mbps, Unlimited
    Gift: Code: SPRING19
  • Vodafone £21.00 (*23.00)
    Avg. Speed 35Mbps, Unlimited
    Gift: None
  • TalkTalk £22.50
    Avg. Speed 36Mbps, Unlimited
    Gift: None
  • Direct Save Telecom £22.95 (*29.95)
    Avg. Speed 35Mbps, Unlimited
    Gift: None
  • Origin Broadband £23.00
    Avg. Speed 35Mbps, Unlimited
    Gift: None
Prices inc. Line Rental | View All
The Top 20 Category Tags
  1. BT (2391)
  2. FTTP (1971)
  3. FTTC (1587)
  4. Building Digital UK (1540)
  5. Politics (1323)
  6. Openreach (1322)
  7. Business (1170)
  8. Statistics (1032)
  9. Mobile Broadband (954)
  10. FTTH (951)
  11. Fibre Optic (934)
  12. Ofcom Regulation (867)
  13. Wireless Internet (855)
  14. 4G (837)
  15. Virgin Media (801)
  16. Sky Broadband (573)
  17. TalkTalk (554)
  18. EE (550)
  19. Vodafone (462)
  20. Security (392)
New Forum Topics
Promotion
Helpful ISP Guides and Tips
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
Sponsored

Copyright © 1999 to Present - ISPreview.co.uk - All Rights Reserved - Terms , Privacy and Cookie Policy , Links , Website Rules , Contact