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Rock and a Hard Place as Openreach Criticised for Limited FTTP Rollout

Monday, February 12th, 2018 (9:02 am) - Score 6,062
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Openreach’s accelerated “Fibre First” plan to deploy FTTPultrafast broadband” to 3 million UK premises by 2020 (here) has allegedly left the Government “extremely frustrated,” so much so that they are rumoured to be revisiting the option of completely splitting BT’s network access division.

At present the operator expects to bring “ultrafast broadband” (100Mbps+) capable connections to 13 million premises by the end of 2020, which it will deliver through a mix of cheaper but slower hybrid fibre technology (i.e. G.fast to 10 million premises) and more expensive but Gigabit capable Fibre-to-the-Premises lines (i.e. FTTP to 3 million premises; until 1st Feb 2018 they only had solid plans for 2 million).

Openreach also aspires to push FTTP out to 10 million premises but the seeming lack of a solid commitment to deliver this appears to be causing frustration within the Government. As one Westminster source told The Telegraph this weekend: “Lots of investors are now seeing the potential of full fibre. BT and Openreach have more to gain than most but are not investing properly. We need to look at why.” Ofcom have also been piling the pressure on, with CEO Sharon White accusing the operator of “complacency” by not investing more.

The Government aren’t wrong, plenty of smaller alternative network (AltNet) ISPs have made similar plans. For example, Hyperoptic aim to cover 2 million urban premises by 2022 (aspiration for 5 million by 2025), while Vodafone / Cityfibre will reach 1 million by 2021 (aspiration for up to 5 million by 2025) and Virgin Media also aim to reach 2 million by around 2019 or 2020. Not to mention all of the work by smaller operators.

On the other hand many of Openreach’s smaller rivals aren’t bogged down by the heavy weight of historic regulation, not to mention some issues with BT’s risk averse shareholders, as well as several rivals demanding cheaper FTTC broadband (makes it harder to sell an investment case for FTTP), plus on-going problems with debt and a growing pension deficit.

Openreach has previously warned (here) that reaching 10 million premises (costing £3bn to £6bn) may only be possible with co-investment support from other ISPs (difficult since so many are now doing their own thing), as well as softer regulation, reduced logistical barriers (improved planning etc.) and the ability to switch-off old copper networks as areas move to FTTP (expensive and complex, while also requiring support from Sky Broadband and TalkTalk etc.).

A Spokesperson for BT said:

“Our 900,000 investors need certainty and stability about how we are regulated. We are therefore working very closely with the government and the regulator to create the conditions to ensure that investment can be pursued.””

The challenge here is with the difficulty of marrying the industry’s many competing interests and turning that into some sort of workable agreement, which is essential in order to avoid future legal and competition disputes. However, BT’s rivals are increasingly deciding to do their own FTTP rather than sacrifice to the incumbent, which could reduce the possibility of a co-investment solution and disrupt Openreach’s efforts.

Equally there may be something to be said for allowing AltNets some time to grow their own networks first, without fear of maximum competitive pressure being applied in the same areas by Openreach. Lest we forget that Ofcom’s recent Strategic Review (here), which agreed the “legal separation” of Openreach from BT, was partly designed to help encourage the growth of “full fibre” AltNets and that’s precisely what we’re seeing.

A Spokesperson for the DCMS (Government) said:

“The legal separation of BT and Openreach is helping to bring certainty for the sector and better broadband to consumers, and we’ve always been clear that we expect to see significant improvements to services and increased investment in the country’s digital infrastructure. Full fibre connectivity will be vital in building a Britain that’s fit for the future, so it was good to hear Openreach announce a move away from reliance on copper.”

In our view Openreach’s “Fibre First” commitment suggests that they’re already heading toward a deployment that will almost certainly end up extending well beyond 3 million premises by 2025, although they’re clearly hoping for some more regulatory flexibility before signing off on the details and committing to a bigger figure.

Meanwhile it remains unclear how much of a difference full separation of Openreach would actually make vs the current legal separation, particularly since most of today’s largest investment strategies are only focused upon reaching the more economically viable urban areas. Any future strategy for tackling the other half of the UK, particularly rural areas, would undoubtedly still require billions in state aid; irrespective of Openreach’s status.

Full fibre is ultimately a technology that may take a couple of decades to rollout and we’re only just starting down that path. Nevertheless with so many recent announcements around FTTP it’s beginning to feel like the market is changing faster than either regulation or Openreach can keep pace with.

On the other hand we’ve already had one Strategic Review last year and there’s now something to be said for allowing natural competition to grow itself over the next few years, which requires stability.

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Mark Jackson
By Mark Jackson
Mark is a professional technology writer, IT consultant and computer engineer from Dorset (England), he is also the founder of ISPreview since 1999 and enjoys analysing the latest telecoms and broadband developments. Find me on Twitter, , Facebook and Linkedin.
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61 Responses
  1. asrab uddin

    It is pretty limited – Vodafone 5 million TalkTalk 3 million and various other incremental announcements by other alt nets makes BT pledge seem very weak in comparison,

    • AndyH

      Cityfibre/Vodafone will initially aim to cover 1 million premises. There is the ‘opportunity’ to cover up to 5 million premises by 2025, but this is not a commitment.

      TalkTalk’s plans for 3 million premises are heavily contingent on setting up a new entity and receiving a large amount of funding (over £1bn). There is also a requirement for wholesale commitment.

    • Fastman

      hhhhmm Openreach 3m are real and happening

      the the others are just being talked about that’s a world of difference

    • A.N.other Customer

      Vodafone 5million ??? They have 300k bb subscribers at present and cannot manage that number. Check the customer feedback.They are in utter chaos , the billing is almost fraudulent and customer services worse than BT so that is saying something.Its well a good talking numbers but it’s about service delivery . That won’t change until Ofcom is replaced 100% by an effective regulator . The current shower are not fit for purpose.

    • Mike

      “Cityfibre/Vodafone will initially aim to cover 1 million premises. There is the ‘opportunity’ to cover up to 5 million premises by 2025, but this is not a commitment.”

      “hhhhmm Openreach 3m are real and happening”

      Openreaches 10M Gfast and 3 Million FTTP are not commitments, they are “AIMS”. The story even states…
      “At present the operator expects to bring…”

      The prior news item is even headlined “Openreach Aim FTTP Broadband for 3 Million Premises in 8 UK Cities”
      https://www.ispreview.co.uk/index.php/2018/02/openreach-aim-fttp-broadband-3-million-premises-8-uk-cities.html

      So enough of making it sound like BTs fantasy figures are a commitment.

    • Gadget

      Mike – thanks for the link – I think you missed the bit in the article that said “Meanwhile Ofcom and the Government continue to pressure the operator for more action and today they reaffirmed their aspiration for 10 million FTTP premises, although for now they’ve only confirmed an accelerated rollout plan for the first 3 million.”

    • Mike

      I think you missed the very first paragraph that states….

      “Openreach (BT) has today announced that they intend to deploy Gigabit capable “full fibre” (FTTP) ultrafast broadband to 3 million premises in 8 major UK cities by 2020”

      Since when was an “intention” a “commitment”?

      For reference in case your first language is not English…
      http://www.thesaurus.com/browse/intention
      the first 2 alternative words being “AIM” and “HOPE”

    • Gadget

      Mike 0 I think you need to differentiate between what is written by the author as comment and what is released in by the company themselves.

      Perhaps going to the source would help
      https://www.btplc.com/News/#/pressreleases/results-for-the-third-quarter-to-31-december-2017-2401079

      “Openreach to deliver FTTP to 3m premises by the end of 2020; sets course to reach 10m homes and businesses by mid-2020s with the right conditions “

    • Mike

      With the “right conditions” i guarantee i can send BT back to their non-English speaking home planet also.

      That Guarantee is probably worth more.

  2. Devon Paddler

    So the Government can’t understand the basic economics that a retail ISP investment in FTTP whether like HyperOptic, or a JV like Vodafone or TalkTalk allows them to build a business case based on 100% revenue from retail clients versus any Openreach investment with a far smaller revenue due to price controls & regulation.

    Government clearly not learning from history & the original CableTV rollout in the UK

    • occasionally factual

      Tories who understand economics – extinct species.

    • Joe

      @occasionally factual

      Actually you’re wrong but for more depressing reasons. They know the economics but haven’t the courage to defend them. If you look at a whole sweep of policy areas the politics of attacking market solutions has trumped good market solutions.

    • Mike

      Labour/Liberals would also screw it up as well.

      Central planning the market always fails.

  3. Steve Jones

    You have to wonder what the government/regulator response might be to the “chill effect” on altnet investment if Openreach did announce some hugely ambitious target. As it is, I also expect Openreach to announce plans beyond the 3m at some point. However, I think they will not be (unlike some others) announce new targets which they are unlikely to reach as, among other things, making such speculative announcements might be subject to regulatory action if it was thought it was being done to kill off alternative investment.

    In the meantime, the Telegraph, who specialise in such stories, might well be swayed by an element of comfortably off rural readers being served rather poorly. However, any thought that a fully separated Openreach would suddenly come up with massive funds for mass fibre roll-out to the countryside is way off economic reality given the way the market is regulated.

    • GNewton

      @Steve Jones: Let’s not pretend that Openreach is an independent company able to roll out fibre as it pleases. It isn’t. Rather, the Openreach budget is controlled by BT. And Openreach doesn’t even own the network assets, it only manages them on behalf of BT. And then let’s not forget the huge pensions burden.

      Perhaps it might be better to bypass Openreach altogether, as many alternative network companies already do, rather than co-invest with Openreach. There is no easy way forwards for Openreach at this stage.

    • AndyH

      @ GNewton – The independence of Openreach and the pension deficit are irrelevant. BT will not make capital investments if OFCOM keeps pushing for low prices and increased regulatory reform. These are barriers to investment and they would apply to any other company in BT’s position.

    • GNewton

      @AndyH: The status of Openreach is relevant here. The current arrangement prevents or discourages co-investment with Openreach on the part of other network companies.

    • AndyH

      @ GNewton – No, it’s irrelevant. The UK has some of the lowest wholesale rates in the world and some of the strictest regulatory controls. These are your barriers to investment, not BT.

      There is a reason why other telecom operators are happy to invest billions in other European countries, but they’ve been reluctant to invest anything in the UK.

    • GNewton

      @AndyH: Nobody disputes the facts that there are barriers for BT when it comes to investments because of the strict regulatory environment. However, the article in the Telegraph says about Openreach:

      “As its only shareholder, BT retains control over the budget for investment, however, and has resisted pressure to commit more, despite lobbying from Openreach management to upgrade 10 million lines”

      Hence, in addition to regulatory limitations, there’s the issue of BT shareholders, BT’s pension burden, and the lack of possibilities to co-invest in Openreach. Barking up the wrong tree doesn’t help. Openreach is not to blame here, BT is, as is the regulatory regime imposed upon BT.

    • NGA for all

      3m (2.5m more) FTTP by the end of 2020 equates to c 70,000 a month connected, a huge number as it is.

      I have not seen a sensible discussion on resource.

      BT is struggling to do much more than £50m worth of work in rural a quarter.

    • AndyH

      @ NGA

      I don’t think resources are an issue. In terms of non-contracted FTTP and G.fast, Openreach are way ahead of schedule.

      Most of the FTTP build will be non-rural areas:

      “Birmingham, Bristol, Cardiff, Edinburgh, Leeds, Liverpool, London and Manchester make up the first phase of the programme which will connect up to 40 UK towns, cities and boroughs with FTTP, with build starting this year”

      On top of that, Openreach are hiring an additional 3,000 engineers.

      @ GNewton

      That contradicts what Clive Selley said last week to the media and customers of Openreach:

      We’re accelerating our plans to build FTTP to three million premises by 2020 which sets the course to reach ten million by the mid-2020s with the right conditions.

      Support is needed from you our communications provider customers, central and local Government and the regulator to deliver key enablers:

      – Achieving low build and connection costs
      – Achieving rapid take-up of and generating incremental revenue
      – Having a supportive regulatory and public policy framework

    • NGA for all

      @AndyH Good to hear, but it has been a huge struggle so far, and you ‘only’ managing to do £50m worth of work in rural a quarter. There £1bn in BDUK pipleline and £527m Cap Def.

    • MikeW

      Where do you calculate £50m from?

    • Steve Jones

      @GNewton

      The financial cases for and against FTTP is just the same investment is just the same whether OR are fully independent or not. If there’s a business case it can be done, if there isn’t it can’t. OR can only earn revenue from wholesale costs which are tightly regulated by Ofcom. The co-investment model is riddled with issues. For example, OR have to provide all services equally, so what’s in it for a co-investor? In any event, a co-investor is going to want a return too, so how much revenue would OR earn.

      OR’s total sales on line rental and FTTC/FTTP is about £3bn a year (the rest being things like leased lines wholesale rentals). That £3bn turnover has to pay for all the costs of staff, pension costs, equipment, buildings, rates, wayleaves, depreciation and provide the cashflow for investment in the relevant areas of mass-market BB and copper. At the moment capex seems to be running about the £1.8bn a year, albeit not all of it will be spent on these areas.

      Altnets can factor in the full retail charges for their services (and also not having a pension debt contribution to make). Nor are the compelled to provide uneconomic services or provide legacy products because a regulator says they must. As they don’t have a regulator breathing down their neck and they can invest their money completely freely. OR are not in that position.

    • NGA for all

      MikeW ..the gross billed BDUK related receipts is listed quarterly in the plc accounts. It dipped in 2017 and building a little now. Q1 was a low £26m, Q2 £52m, Q3 £58.

      AndyH .. if you have an engine doing 70k-100k FTTP installs a month by 2020, then capacity to have done 10m ish by 2025 is not theoretical. However there has been too many press releases promising more resource before, it would be good to see the current and forecast numbers.

      In these circumstances, Gov, rather than complaining, all the corrections wished for are now available to be nurtured. By that I mean, supporting processes to facilitate orders. The sooner cutover dates in rural are facilitated the better.

      The resource or the lack of it has always been key. This level of commitment, if delivered is now likely to eat all before it.

      Will these additional FTTP provision costs be included by Ofcom to the WLA price control, similar in the way FTTP costs were being modelled in the B-USO voluntary offer? I guess some deduction in PST can also be modelled in.

    • CarlT

      I should make clear the Openreach announcement on FTTP means some parts of those cities will get it. There are G.fast pods in various exchange areas in Leeds. Hunslet and Armley both have a fair amount of G.fast coverage as pilot exchanges and there seem to be pods connected to cabinets on other exchanges too.

  4. Fibrous

    Despite the limited rollout, I wouldn’t trust The Telegraph on this one.

    They’ve been consistently putting out articles that claim Government are revisiting separation and have I’m doing so shown their preference quite clearly.

    There’s very little substance to their ‘Westminster insider’ claims. Moreover, it would take Ofcom recommending such an action, even if they were vocal about it (as they have been openly before).

    There’s no story here, it’s just an editorial piece masquerading as news. They’re not necessarily wrong in their view, but neither is this some insider’s revelation.

    Personally, I don’t see how Government can demand a public company do anything, especially when they squeeze its regulated earnings. You can’t have it both ways.

    • Joe

      The Gov have certainly used the separation argument before as a means of trying to wring out extra from BT.

      Though I agree with the headline’s implication. You can’t demand a company invest while trying to minimise its profits and regulate flexibility into the ground.

  5. A_Builder

    @Joe

    I think that would be easily dealt with if OR offered a cheap as chips 30/10 domestic level connection over FTTP or some such and then the price of the faster connections rose a bit more.

    I do agree that if people want something better they will pay a bit more. If you want a 1G/1G connection then £300 feels about right as does 100M/100M for £100. And this is about what the alt nets are charging. Which is why their business case works.

    The trouble is the shutting down of the copper so the cheap stuff gets switched off.

    Maybe, I can’t believe I am saying this out loud, price differentiate over the asymmetric/symmetric nature of the connection? So the cheapo packages are asymmetric. That would keep OFCOM quiet.

    And before AndyH dives in to tell us nobody needs symmetric, I just looked at the firewall for our 20 unit business park and the Rx and Tx data volumes are within 10% of each other over the last 7 days.

    • Gadget

      Issue is that Openreach are not the ISP so only get the infrastructure revenues and are likely to be subject to Ofcom regulation in the same way as they are for copper, whilst altnets see the whole revenue stream plus “add-ons” are in most cases are vertically integrated.
      I’m sure there is a much larger need for symmetric in the business community but it dwarfs the consumer community roughly 10 to 1 and even then many required the SLA/SLG/in-contended aspects of the point-to-point private circuit.

    • Devon Paddler

      OR do offer the same tiers on FTTP & FTTC that’s the point – you can’t argue for a massive investment in fibre when consumers still want to pay the minimum possible

      I’d expect a 20 unit park to be symmetrical in general but that doesn’t mean all that internet traffic is the same – bandwidth isn’t free and ISP’s can manage downstream using CDN’s and cache, but upstream is where the cost lies

    • AndyH

      “And before AndyH dives in to tell us nobody needs symmetric, I just looked at the firewall for our 20 unit business park and the Rx and Tx data volumes are within 10% of each other over the last 7 days.”

      Please explain why not a single ISP is pushing BT Wholesale or Openreach for symmetrical speeds over FTTP. ISPs were even against BT Wholesale offering 330/50 FoD and instead they wanted to keep it as 330/30.

    • Joe

      “I think that would be easily dealt with if OR offered a cheap as chips 30/10 domestic level connection over FTTP or some such and then the price of the faster connections rose a bit more. ”

      I’m not sure that could work. You would have the massive cost with even lower revenues (Even excluding the construction costs – The limited number of higher connections not cancelling/subsidising out the majority of now cheaper lower connections.) Unless of course you are arguing that the regulator gives a quid pro quo that if OR roll out FTTP (even a ‘slow/cheap’ package) they can turn copper off without any legal comeback from the the rival LLU dinosaurs.

      I’d take that deal anyday

    • Bill

      @AndyH

      I was wondering why BTWholesale weren’t going to offer 330/50 FOD.

      I just automatically assumed BT was trying to protect leased line revenue, because 50M upload starts to be a credible alternative to leased line use cases.

      But you say ISPs were against it? What is their reasoning?

    • TheFacts

      @Bill – what’s the range of leased line speeds that people rent? Are most under 50M?

    • Devon Paddler

      ISP’s against it because the upload capacity costs them more.

      Leased line v retail ISP contended connection is very different market – there’s no average leased line – you can have office of 100’s on a 100mbps bearer or an staff of 10 on dual 1Gbps circuits it’ll depend more on what you’re trying to achieve – many many SME should be on a private circuit but operate on a retail ISP service, and similar is true of large corporates – many of those will have run BYOD Wi-fi via a DSL circuit while LAN is connected to a private circiut

  6. A_Builder

    @Joe

    That is precisely what I am arguing.

    Give punters a cheap option at the present price levels to keep the masses happy on FTTP.

    Turn off the copper where that FTTP offer is available.

    Ok it is a messy cross subsidy argument but getting rid of the copper maintenance bill changes the sums dramatically especially where the copper is getting towards EOL.

    • Joe

      I think if you were to extend the rates holiday significantly, allow closure of LLU and probably most significantly give OR all but carte blanche on digging up roads for (only) FTTP (the rules atm are a serious hurdle/expense) then I think the numbers look viable where copper EOL is near.

  7. Terrencem

    From the Telegraph eh? Does anyone take that anti-semitic tory cheer-leading rag seriously?
    If you want to know why some in the UK have lousy broadband just look here – http://www.techradar.com/news/world-of-tech/how-the-uk-lost-the-broadband-race-in-1990-1224784 .

    • Mike

      Aww Mrs Thatcher thank god she put her foot down or we wouldn’t have all the alternative suppliers today would we.

    • CarlT

      May not have VM. Openreach / BT would certainly be reselling their network to others, potentially under similar terms to NTT in Japan.

    • Mike

      Good, good so it led to more choice.

    • terrencem

      More choice of slow copper based broadband, no choice of full fibre broadband.
      Stopping BT from laying fibre to every property in the UK in the late 80’s was a terrible mistake.

    • Mike

      Virgin is fibre, the only part that is not is last coax run to property. Oh and that hardly makes it slow either at 350Mb. There is NO available to the masses BT product capable of that.

      Combine that with more altnet FTTP providers than there ever has been and id say a job well done by Mrs Thatcher.

      If you love BT so much pay them thousands for a fibre lease line. Nobody is stopping you.

  8. Swighton

    Good article, having just returned from a country (New Zealand) perceived as years behind Europe / Asia in Technology advancement.
    I’m stunned by the lack of ambition and government support to get fibre to the premise in the UK, over a decade of procrastination since I left.
    The fraud of Fibre Broadband makes my blood boil, copper / VDSL is not fibre! and don’t get me started on compulsory line rental for a land line.
    As much as I hate wasted tax payer money on travel, I highly recommend they send a couple minsters to New Zealand, they will understand how to make an incumbent operate competitively nationwide and get FTTP rolled out to the masses in a few years.
    Send them over to Australia as well, just so they learn how not to deal with an incumbent.
    I guess being in Cornwall I should be thanking my lucky EU funding grants, that we have fibre up to the cabinet in most parts of Truro city.

    • AndyH

      A few points here:

      – There’s a big difference in the number of premises in NZ compared to the UK (around 1.65 mil vs 29 mil).
      – VDSL is also available in most parts of NZ and is as popular as fibre (https://company.chorus.co.nz/file/80215/Q1-FY18-Connections-update.pdf)
      – Most New Zealanders still remain on ADSL – cost appears to be a big factor

    • GNewton

      To put the figures in perspective: Chorus reported (Sep 2017)

      328,000 fibre broadband connections
      294,000 VDSL connections
      562,000 ADSL connections

      New Zealand is doing better than the UK. Its government is funding two broadband expansion initiatives, aiming to provide fibre to the home for 80% of the population.

    • AndyH

      In what way is New Zealand doing better than the UK?

      The UK has more premises passed with FTTP and more premises connected to FTTP.

      Comparing a country that is 20 times smaller (population wise) is not exactly meaningful.

    • GNewton

      @AndyH: I suggest you read the whole report taken from your link. The fact that New Zealand has a much smaller population doesn’t matter in this comparison. What matters are the government policies, and the willingness for telecom companies to do longterm fibre investments. You may want to defend BT all day long, being involved with that company. But the figures speak for themselves, anybody can see that the UK is not doing well. No need to argue here.

    • Geoff Watts

      I don’t follow your argument here GNewton.

      New Zealand’s population is 1/15th of the size of the UK. The government decided to build a NGA network with far greater funding compared to the UK. If you look at it per capita, the investment made by the New Zealand government is 25-30x greater than the investment the UK government has made.

      If the UK has more FTTP (connected or properties passed), as AndyH says, then where is the logic that the UK is doing worse than New Zealand?

      I would suggest reading some forums and
      comments about New Zealand’s FTTP programme. Some major areas in Auckland are years behind schedule and there are significant backlogs in some parts of New Zealand. Looking at some ISP websites, they even recommend FTTC over FTTP!

  9. NE555

    @ NGA:

    > 3m (2.5m more) FTTP by the end of 2020 equates to c 70,000 a month connected, a huge number as it is.

    3m properties *passed* is not the same as 3m properties *connected* – unless they rip out and replace the whole copper network as they go, which doesn’t seem likely at the moment.

    If they got a 20% takeup on pure fibre it would be considered a huge success – especially if people have to pay more for FTTP than FTTC.

    Openreach have a huge advantage over the Altnets, which is that they have existing ducts in the streets and in many cases direct to the outside of people’s homes – making both the fibre backbone and individual connections much cheaper, since there’s much less need to dig up the streets. In theory PIA makes those assets usable by other providers; in practice they make the process as bureaucratic as possible to make it unattractive. (Perhaps PIA is an apt name 🙂

    • NGA for all

      @NE555 I think it is connected, not passed in this case, but it would be good to get clarity. You would not need 3,000 extra FTE to pass premises.

      There is no half way house. If BT finally step forward, then the policy making changes with it. There is no, or should be no half way house.

      If cutover dares are withheld by Ofcom, then it is arises naturally through the rural work, which has ample funding.

    • AndyH

      @ NGA – What makes you think it’s connected? Where have you read about 3 million connected homes?

    • Devon Paddler

      @NGA that’s nonsense – even if OR wanted to “connect” those properties they are not allowed to replace copper with fibre – period

      The 3M FTTP commitment is to build a PON network that can support 3M connected properties – ie to facilitate 3M properties being able to order FTTP service from an ISP.

      “Passed” is really the wrong term as unlike FTTC the fibre build is only completed when individuals order – ie the final fibre is only blown at time of order – the same approach is also being used by Gigaclear in their CDS and fastershire builds

    • NGA for all

      Within £99 of being connected then, is that what you mean, a final drop away.

    • Devon Paddler

      @NGA

      Final Drop+ it’s not just nearest pole to property. The retail cost may be £99 but the ISP cost and OR real costs are very different. Even at the suggested £99 that’s £250M of deferred cost for the next 2.5M and OR true costs would be far higher

    • NGA for all

      @Devon Paddler, thanks ..what do you paddle -K1, Exe-decent?

    • Devon Paddler

      Mainly play on the Dart these days as it’s near when time permits ☹️

  10. Phil

    BT are sowing the seeds of defeat here – by ceding control of FTTP to other companies they will lose their virtual monopoly and cash cow of network access fees and line rental (albeit at the capped levels set by OFCOM).

    The minute someone else installs their lines it’s a fair bet the customer won’t be coming back – if OR are the ones installing the lines, then even if the broadband provider is someone else, they’re still getting money for the use of their fibre.

    • A_Builder

      I’m afraid you are right.

      The equation really is:-

      Lost market share + pension deficit = BT going bust

      And the train wreck is gathering momentum. 6 months ago they could have lead this. Now I’m not sure if they can get on top of this. As Mark said in the article the step pace of change is massive. Trouble is that the resistance is doctrinal rather than ROI lead.

      And I sat that as a BT shareholder with an historic lump of shares handed down from Buzzby.

      So while I am driven mad by OR on a daily basis I want them to suceeed.

  11. TheFacts

    Openreach CEO, Mike McTighe says the operator has undergone a mindshift about #FTTP. Openreach has “crossed that Rubicon” & decided to deploy fibre “as fast as we can”, he said. #FTTH18

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