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BT Disguise UK Superfast Broadband Street Cabinets with Vinyl Wraps

Tuesday, Mar 12th, 2013 (8:19 am) - Score 5,856

BTOpenreach, which manages access to BT’s national telecoms network in the United Kingdom, appears to have found a new way of using customised Vinyl Wraps to help camouflage some of their superfast broadband (FTTC) street cabinets.

Most people will be able to recognise BT’s street cabinets as being both green and fairly big (the new FTTC cabinets tend to be 1.6 metres high), which in some areas can make them look a bit out of place and perhaps even ugly. Openreach does paint some of its cabinets to better match their surroundings but until now nothing more extensive has been announced.

An Openreach Spokesperson told ISPreview.co.uk in October 2012:

We make every effort to site new fibre cabinets in a sensitive manner, in co-operation with the local authority, whilst still ensuring that residents stand to benefit from the next generation of broadband technology. We are also constantly evaluating and refining our approach to deployment, and this includes engaging with local authorities on ways to reduce the visual impact of cabinets.”

Last year the UK government’s culture spokesman, Viscount Younger, strongly suggested that “plans [were] afoot to camouflage” the big green FTTC boxes. Sadly BT later clarified that the idea had been mooted but it did not proceed beyond that point (here).

Thinkbroadband today reports that some of Openreach’s street cabinets (both FTTC and normal ones), not to mention cabinets used by other operators, have now begun to use custom vinyl wraps from WRAP and HIDE.

This allows the cabinets to be covered “in a photographic print of the background [that] will make these cabinets disappear and cease to blight the urban landscape,” alternatively you can even use an arty style like the one below.

bt hidden street cabinet arty

Apparently it costs from £29 to cover a basic meter cupboard and thus a full cabinet could set the operator or council back by well over a hundred pounds, which might be a small price to pay if it minimises the number of complaints.

Meanwhile others don’t much care what they look like, just so long as an FTTC cabinet is actually available to deliver better broadband speeds for our homes and businesses.

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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 X (Twitter), Mastodon, Facebook and .
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