Home
 » ISP News » 
Sponsored

UK ISP Sky Shows Interest in Naked FTTC Fibre Broadband Service

Tuesday, August 4th, 2015 (2:04 pm) - Score 1,906

A small titbit of info. has surfaced that appears to confirm Sky Broadband’s interest in BTOpenreach’s forthcoming standalone “fibre broadband” product (Single Order GEA / Naked VDSL), which means you could take superfast broadband without also having to pay a separate phone line rental fee.

The SoGEA product was first mooted in July 2014 before finally being confirmed a few months later (here) and this was followed in March 2015 by confirmation of BTWholesale’s plans for a related product trial (here), with the expectation being that such a service could be launched before the end of summer 2016.

One of the benefits of this approach is that it might be cheaper because most consumers now prefer to use their mobile or VoIP (Skype etc.) to make voice calls instead of landline phones, but in reality the cost difference probably won’t deliver a big saving over the more familiar broadband + phone line rental combination.

At the end of the day you’d still have to pay something for the physical copper or aluminium line that BTOpenreach runs into your property and simply cutting out the voice component doesn’t make a huge difference to the overall price.

Never the less today’s update from the Telecommunications Adjudicator (OTA2), which usually doesn’t carry much of interest, also includes an interesting little report on the progress towards building SoGEA into a product. The mention of Sky Broadband’s product request is particularly noteworthy.

OTA2 July 2015 Update – SoGEA Progress

Openreach have been sharing their SOGEA design proposals with Industry via the CFPCG & a series of focus workshops.

For migrations scenarios (i.e. Consumer switching from existing WLR/MPF-based service to SOGEA-based ‘derived’ voice service with new CP), the initial design proposal to ‘parallel run’ the old & new services for up to 7 days, was rejected by Industry due to the conflicting contractual issues that would exist between the two CPs concerned and the consumer, during the period of parallel running. It was however agreed that the ‘parallel-running’ approach would work for a ‘same CP’ upgrade scenario.

In addition to the initial proposals from Openreach, Sky has now submitted an SOR for a SOGEA access product without the copper test leg but with a test capability provided within the cabinet. Other CP’s are reviewing their interest in this ask.”

A Statement of Requirement (SoR) is industry speak for when an ISP, such as Sky, formally requests the introduction of a new product or a change to an existing one. Mind you such requests often take a lot of time and there’s no guarantee that Openreach will accept it, although Ofcom can intervene if the ISP raises a concern. Sky were also one of the first major ISPs to adopt Openreach’s FTTC Self-Install product when it first emerged a couple of years ago.

A few years ago Sky also requested a new unbundled (LLU) superfast broadband (FTTC) product called SLU Bitstream (SLU = Sub-Loop Unbundled) that might have gone beyond the existing Virtual Unbundled Local Access (VULA) variant of FTTC (here). But so far little appears to have come of this and Sky seems to have moved on to focus their efforts into developing a new ultrafast FTTH/P network instead.

At the end of the day we’d still quite like to see what SoGEA might have to offer, although if the cost difference ends up amounting to a few pence then all the effort might well appear to have been wasted. On the other hand consumers ordering SoGEA would at least get one clear and hopefully simple price, which is a plus.

Separately the OTA2 report also notes that Ofcom’s new harmonised GPL NoT+ broadband and phone migration system, which launched on 20th June 2015, has so far suffered “no major issues“. Mind you we have seen some smaller problems, such as with migration requests that occur too fast and conflict when rented flats or houses change ownership.

Leave a Comment
2 Responses
  1. Avatar Steve Jones says:

    Of course Sky don’t actually get their voice service from BT. All that’s being paid for by Sky is the MPF element.

    Time was when voice was required to (in effect) carry the entire cost of the line. Indeed that was the way the service was regulated (witness the SMPF product, where the voice is provided by BT and ADSL by another SP) is vastly cheaper than the full MPF product. In other words, the lion’s share of the cost was dumped on the voice operator (a deliberate regulatory policy). Of course it’s a nonsense. In times past the voice service may have provided sufficient revenue to subsidise the line. Those days are long, long past. Voice is a declining source of revenue (not just in the UK, but across the entire developed world).

    A “naked” VDSL service will just use a sub-loop. In principle, it should cost a bit less as the “E” part of the copper network is no long used (although, of course, the GEA/FTTC product uses a fibre link back to an exchange). So there may be a marginal cost reduction, but as there’s no obvious cost saving to OR in this product, save, maybe fewer faults on the “E” side (they can hardly just pull out the E side copper), it won’s save much. Perhaps Sky envisage a day where they can save costs by not having to keep equipment in so many telephone exchanges as they only need it at those exchanges with fibre heads. Voice would be carried over the FTTC link, presumably using IP. Quite what would happen to those in any area not able to get FTTC, I don’t know.

    Note that it is possible to imagine OR using the FTTC cabinet to eventually do away with separate voice and close down a lot of expensive exhanges. In effect, the cabinet would be a mini-exchange with voice carried over IP. BT has already asked that at same point in the future they will not be required to provide a “standard” voice service.

  2. Avatar John says:

    With all the interest from all the CP regarding the 10 year review by ofcom and the cma investigation into the BT / EE buyout and then the EU with O2 buyout bu H3G. It’s never been so interesting but will costs change for the customer?
    Speciation is yes! But when you look at the drivers to increase data speeds reduce costs and the customer unwilling to pay more the business drivers place pressure on the margins. The telcos in the EU look to also follow the takeover and merger route.
    Vodafone may add virgin to their C&W. It’s long been a roadmap that only buissness with deep pockets can fund the networks for tomorrow .
    5G now on the planning table 4G rollout to provide more and better coverage rural areas needing faster Internet speeds.
    Only real choices can drive competitive pricing failing that it’s regulation and that never works as it does not change at the same speed as the markets.
    When you can have true diverse routes to your home phone/ router you have more room to move its time that radio in the local loop comes back with LTE+ (4G) and small cells this maybe possible. WiMAX failed as again it competes with mobile small cells complement mobile . Let’s hope the cma look past the vested interests of the CP’s to split Openreach from BT. It’s a fact that the other CP are unwilling to replicate the copper / fiber last mile understandable as its costly and may take >10 years to recoup given that a customer can change quickly who can justify the investment. Let BT continue to provide as a regulated business but if the nation needs faster speeds it may also have to pay out of the public funds…but not to provide profit for BT or the other CP .. Now it’s politics…….don’t forget it’s the telco’s workforce that pays the price.. Look at how many are outsourced and have less pay and conditions as a result.

Comments are closed.

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
  • Onestream £21.99 (*27.99)
    Speed 45Mbps, Unlimited
    Gift: None
  • NOW TV £22.00 (*40.00)
    Speed 36Mbps, Unlimited
    Gift: None
  • TalkTalk £22.00 (*29.95)
    Speed 38Mbps, Unlimited
    Gift: None
  • Hyperoptic £22.00
    Speed 50Mbps, Unlimited
    Gift: Promo Code: HYPERSALE
  • Plusnet £22.50 (*36.52)
    Speed 36Mbps, Unlimited
    Gift: £70 Reward Card
Large Availability | View All
Cheapest Ultrafast ISPs
  • Vodafone £25.00
    Speed: 100Mbps, Unlimited
    Gift: None
  • Hyperoptic £26.00 (*35.00)
    Speed: 150Mbps, Unlimited
    Gift: Promo Code: HYPERSALE
  • Virgin Media £26.99 (*44.00)
    Speed: 108Mbps, Unlimited
    Gift: None
  • TalkTalk £28.00 (*39.95)
    Speed: 145Mbps, Unlimited
    Gift: £14 for First 6 Months
  • Gigaclear £29.00 (*44.00)
    Speed: 100Mbps, Unlimited
    Gift: Promo Code: HELLO2021
Large Availability | View All
The Top 20 Category Tags
  1. FTTP (2975)
  2. BT (2852)
  3. FTTC (1824)
  4. Building Digital UK (1799)
  5. Politics (1744)
  6. Openreach (1688)
  7. Business (1507)
  8. FTTH (1347)
  9. Mobile Broadband (1311)
  10. Statistics (1297)
  11. 4G (1127)
  12. Fibre Optic (1098)
  13. Wireless Internet (1070)
  14. Ofcom Regulation (1053)
  15. Virgin Media (1047)
  16. EE (743)
  17. Vodafone (721)
  18. TalkTalk (700)
  19. Sky Broadband (694)
  20. 5G (596)
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