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BT Wholesale UK Broadband Checker Adds SOGEA FTTC Availability

Thursday, May 23rd, 2019 (7:56 am) - Score 5,469
bt wholesale sogea fttc and g.fast broadband availability

The launch of Openreach’s new Single Order Generic Ethernet Access (SOGEA) product, which enables consumers to buy a standalone UK hybrid fibre broadband (FTTC / VDSL2 or G.fast) ISP line without the voice (phone) service, looks to be imminent as its availability status has recently been added to the BT Wholesale checker service.

At present most consumers on Openreach’s national copper line and hybrid fibre network (excluding ultrafast FTTPfull fibre” lines) buy their phone service alongside line rental (included by default) and then broadband is optionally added on top, although many ISPs tend to bundle both together.

However most people only use their fixed line for broadband (i.e. mobiles and VoIP are preferred for calls) and the old analogue voice services are due to be withdrawn by 2025 (here). As such Openreach has spent the past few years developing the SOGEA solution for Fibre-to-the-Cabinet (FTTC / VDSL2) lines (also known by the silly name of SoG.Fast for G.fast lines).

In short, this is designed to enable consumers to buy a standalone hybrid fibre broadband line without the voice / phone service, but don’t expect a big fall in price because the voice component of your line rental is only a tiny part of its cost (SOGEA wholesale pricing).

The service also introduces a new front plate for the latest NTE5C Master Socket, which where necessary has been designed to prevent analogue voice being reinjected back onto Openreach’s network from the end users premises (SOGEA technical details). All of this will help to support a future direction where voice calling is largely handled via VoIP.

The SOGEA service has been in its final ISP pilot phase since earlier this year (here) and its commercial launch is expected imminently (during May 2019 was the last update we saw), while SoG.Fast is trailing a little and should launch soon after. Full national coverage of SOGEA is expected to be achieved during the second half of 2019.

In keeping with all this we note that the ‘WBC SOGEA Availability Date‘ column on BT Wholesale’s broadband checker (thanks Peter) is now being populated with the “available” marker (previously this was just left blank). We understand that several ISPs, such as Sky Broadband, are looking at launching related packages but as yet we haven’t seen them (tricky to market these as there isn’t much of a cost advantage and some ISPs may wish to get an optional VoIP solution ready first).

NOTE: The column now gives a status of ‘Amber’ for G.fast as SoG.Fast has not yet reached the same launch phase.

bt wholesale sogea fttc and g.fast broadband availability

On a separate point we’ve noted that today many of our usual test addresses have stopped returning the results for ‘Premise Environment‘ at the bottom of BT Wholesale’s checker (it’s not showing up for us today but this may be temporary). Admittedly the results for Bridge Tap, VRI and NTEfaceplate are probably fairly useless for the masses.

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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.
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11 Responses
  1. Avatar Matt

    This has been on there for a quite a few months already.

    • The column has but you would have seen it as blank outside of trial locations. The fact it’s now showing as ‘available’ in non-trial/pilot areas is usually what happens as a new product gets set for its commercial launch.

  2. Avatar Mark

    I just checked my line and it claims everything is available? And yet I’m only on a FTTC line. It’s very confusing as it leads you to think you can simply order nice fast broadband, not that it involves Openreach installing a fibre line to your house for who knows how much!

    • Avatar Al

      I would point you to the Openreach community broadband website for fibre installs. It’s what pur community is going through right now!

  3. Avatar Rick

    I have FTTC (infinity 2) and also sogea says available, along with all the ADSL variants

    There is a footnote at the bottom saying an open order on my line, yet ive not ordered any other service from BT. I don’t know what that means?
    http://x-v.it/8vp0zi

  4. Avatar Bob de Builder

    Have you changed any package, including BT TV via Multicast?

  5. Avatar Peterson Bertalinon

    boosted copper cables it’s a new thing nowadays.

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