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BT Openreach Enhance 18Mbps FTTC Broadband Trial for Slow ADSL Lines

Wednesday, October 12th, 2016 (2:51 pm) - Score 2,192

Openreach (BT) has announced some enhancements and an extension of their new 18Mbps (2Mbps upload) Fibre-to-the-Cabinet (FTTC) based product trial, which began in July 2016 (here) and is designed to help people stuck on slow ADSL based pure copper broadband lines.

The new product tier was created to act as an uplift path for existing ADSL / ADSL2+ (up to 20Mbps) based broadband lines, which is what most of the country still uses. A lot of people who could get FTTC may often choose not to do so because sometimes the speed uplift vs ADSL is simply too small (i.e. FTTC speeds can fall a lot lower than headline levels) and this makes the extra cost unattractive (FTTC often adds a +£5-15 per month premium).

As a result Openreach decided to trial a new 18Mbps tier, which costs ISPs only +£4 per month (excluding VAT) at wholesale and that puts it at a similar level, if still slightly more expensive, to the more traditional ADSL2+ service.

So far Sky Broadband are the only ISP that has openly confirmed their participation in the trial via the new Sky Fibre Lite product (here), which involves about 20,000 of their subscribers. However the trial was originally only due to last until 14th December 2016, but in a show of support Openreach has now moved to enhance the promotion.

Openreach Statement

From 7th November 2016, we’re enhancing the existing special offer by:

* Adding additional qualifying cabinets.

* Increasing the availability of the offer to apply to qualifying ADSL lines speed criteria <10Mbps. This is an uplift from our current <3Mbps speed criteria. * Extension of the special offer duration to run until 31st March 2017. Terms of the offer including duration, service level agreements, and price remain the same.

We hadn’t previously seen the less than 3Mbps criteria for this profile, but it’s good to see that they’ve now lifted it up to the more USO aligned <10Mbps.

Leave a Comment
7 Responses
  1. Avatar Henry says:

    As I said in April, I would expect this to be being used by BT Retail’s “Unlimited Faster Broadband” product, which says it provides estimated VDSL download speeds between 2Mb and 15Mb in FTTC areas where “BT Infinity” is not available. If BT Retail is not taking advantage of this, is there a Retail-to-Openreach cross-subsidy?

    Sadly, it is still no use for sub-5 Mbit/s ADSL in London on EO lines

  2. Avatar captain.cretin says:

    Any chance of a link to the new cab list?

    I have friends on a sub 3Mb line.

    1. Avatar eM says:

      Second that. Just searched Sky’s website, no mention of “Fibre Lite” there.

    2. Avatar eM says:

      Found some links from Sky. But this product appears to be for existing customers only, not something you can order:
      http://www.sky.com/go-fibre-lite
      http://helpforum.sky.com/t5/Fibre/Sky-Fibre-Lite/td-p/2505961

  3. Avatar DTMark says:

    My God, the last time we had 18Mbps down was when we were using 3G and at least it had 4Mbps upstream.

    1. Avatar Data Analysis says:

      And people moan about other providers upload rates on here, i wonder where they are 😉

    2. Avatar AndyH says:

      Then you’re lucky as we had next to zero mobile coverage in the house and 0.75Mbps ADSL.

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