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Openreach Extend G.INP to More ECI FTTC Broadband Lines

Thursday, June 11th, 2020 (5:11 am) - Score 5,735
fibre broadband is here high bt street cabinet

Openreach’s (BT) latest trial of ReTransmission (ReTx / G.INP) technology for UK Fibre-to-the-Cabinet (FTTC / VDSL2) based broadband ISP lines on their estate of ECI street cabinets, which was recently paused by the COVID-19 crisis, is about to be extended to include in-life ECI lines as a one off exercise.

Just to recap. G.INP (ITU G.998.4) is an error correction solution that is designed to help resolve spikes of Electromagnetic Interference (impulse noise), which can improve a line’s stability and thus performance. The introduction of this technology can, on some VDSL2 lines, even produce a small increase in performance.

The feature is nothing new to Openreach and they’ve had better luck getting it to work on their larger estate of Huawei based cabinets, but sadly the same cannot be said for those using kit from ECI. Various past attempts have been made to get ReTx working on ECI and all have run into problems, but the operator’s latest trial has been showing more promise (see early feedback).

The recent trial, which is still on pause, was an attempt to deploy ReTx to all ECI lines in a more strategic way. However a new briefing from Openreach (here) claims it will offer ISPs “the chance to deploy ReTransmission to more of their VDSL lines.” The focus of this, we’re told, seems to be on a large volume of in-life ECI lines.

Openreach estimates that around 17% of ECI lines could benefit from ReTx and so they’ve agreed, upon request from an ISP, to deploy the upgrade to in-life ECI FTTC lines over the next six weeks or so. Apparently providers will be able to opt-in to this between now and 9th July 2020. We don’t know exactly how many lines will benefit but it looks like a significant proportion of their estate.

Leave a Comment
16 Responses
  1. Jase says:

    This is really good news for all us stuck on eci cabinets! I’m with sky so will they be offering it to customers on eci to try or will they automatically apply it ?

    1. A_Builder says:

      I suspect that OR will apply it en mass to cabs with suitable hardware/firmware.

      It would be an administrative nightmare if individual lines in any cab were handled differently.

  2. Samuel says:

    Bloomen’ ECI cabinets!

  3. Osk says:

    I’ve been on the trial for over 2 months now, nearly 3 months.

    I haven’t had a single resync since DLM intervened and applied G.INP.

    I gained around 10% in sync speed taking me to 57Mbps. Ping dropped by about 10ms or more. I was previously interleaved.

    It’s been solid since with no stability issues. Pleased it’s being rolled out elsewhere. Over the last 7 years noise has just kept creeping up and interleaving enabled and whilst it use to switch back to fast path that was no longer the case as of 2 years ago.

  4. GNewton says:

    Has nobody noted the misleading advert on the picture for this article? It’s not fibre broadband, it’s VDSL, with copper lines run from that cabinet to the premises.

    1. NE555 says:

      Technically the sticker is correct. “Fibre broadband is HERE” – i.e. “at this cabinet”.

      But not in your house 🙂

  5. bob says:

    a couple of times a year my line will get switched to interleaved from fastpath and i’ll have a rubbish ping in games for 2weeks until it decides to give it back. if g.inp will stop that happening im all for it.

  6. zenuser says:

    Zen don’t seem to understand what g.inp eci actually is.. tried to get them to take part the first but they said no. Trying again given the new info in this article but they don’t seem to understand…very frustrating

    1. definitely_not_a_zenuser says:

      We had Zen lines installed for work because we needed rock solid connections.

      In fact Zen were more unreliable than all the consumer networks out there combined.

      I have no idea why anyone would choose Zen and pay twice the price for no reason.

      My team tried to work remotely over our Zen broadband and we always had to resort to 4G as Zen seem to do a lot of “maintenance work” at night making our lines totally unusable so we all cancelled them.

      Zen are a ultra crappy company in my experience and they let us down so badly.

  7. Francis says:

    When you say “providers will be able to opt-in” do we as customers have to ask to be put on this trial

    1. zenuser says:

      It will be a case of wether your isp wants to take part and then getting them to ask openreach to enable it I imagine. Talk to your isp as there appears to be a window of opportunity..
      Mine is Zen which so far has not helped. I last had eci g.inp in 2016.

  8. anon says:

    Could someone let us know once an ISP (or ISPs) have confirmed if they will take part in the ReTx / G.INP trial?

    I’m outside of my ISP contract so am free to change.

  9. anon says:

    ‘Openreach estimates that around 17% of ECI lines could benefit from ReTx’

    Does this mean that only around 17% of customers on ECI cabinets are likely to have G.INP enabled?

    If so, is ReTx not stable enough to roll out to all ECI cabinets?

  10. Alex says:

    I have just recently spoken to Sky to see if they can opt in for me to have this.

    I suffer from high pings, a Profile Reset brings my speeds up to 54Mb and a ping of 8ms to UK servers. However after 3 days DLM kicks in and brings me down to 48Mb and 16ms.

    Hopefully this is the temp way to have slightly better speeds considering stuck on FTTC with no plans for FTTP and better pings for gaming.

    1. Alex says:

      *Correction not exactly high pings but I have witnessed better pings for my line.

  11. eciuser says:

    @Mark Jackson

    Are you able to get any further updates on the progress of ECI G.INP please?

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