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ISP TalkTalk Launch Cityfibre’s FTTP Broadband in 4 UK Cities

Wednesday, February 17th, 2021 (11:38 am) - Score 7,368
CF cityfibre Cab Chamber photo

Broadband ISP TalkTalk has today announced that they’ve started selling ‘Future Fibre‘ packages on Cityfibre’s new gigabit-speed capable Fibre-to-the-Premises (FTTP) network in four UK cities and towns including Aberdeen, Bolton, Milton Keynes and Peterborough. Prices start at £32 per month for 147Mbps (symmetric).

Cityfibre are currently investing £4bn to cover around 1 million UK premises with their alternative FTTP network by the end of 2021 (500,000 have already been completed), which will then rise to 8 million across 100+ cities and towns (c.30% of the UK). The latter target is expected to be “substantially completed” by the end of 2025 (depending upon how they define ‘substantially’).

Until now TalkTalk have generally only sold FTTP via Openreach’s packages (currently covers c.4 million premises) and they also still serve customers on their former FibreNation network (York etc.), which is now part of Cityfibre but falls under a slightly different agreement.

The key change today is that TalkTalk has now started to hop on to the rest of Cityfibre’s network – beyond just their FibreNation footprint, including in some areas where Vodafone was previously the only other retail ISP. Interestingly, it appears as if TalkTalk has initially chosen to adopt a similar pricing strategy as Vodafone too, which means that their Openreach and Cityfibre based packages adopt the same prices (simpler for consumers but we may see more divergence with time).

The ‘Future Fibre‘ branding for this service is also the same as they used on Openreach’s FTTP products. In other words, new customers in Cityfibre areas will pay £32 per month on an 18-month term (plus £4.95 for router delivery) for their 147Mbps (average advertised speed) package and this goes up to £40 per month for their top 506Mbps plan. The key difference being that Cityfibre is the only supplier giving symmetric speeds on these tiers.

Sadly, there’s no gigabit-speed package yet, but that will probably change in due course. If history is anything to go by then TalkTalk should gradually expand their availability across the rest of Cityfibre’s network through 2021 (we’ve already been seeing Cityfibre’s smaller ISPs, like Zen Internet and Giganet, do the same).

The move also means additional competition for Openreach, not least due to the lower wholesale costs on Cityfibre’s platform that will see ISPs giving that side of their network more preference for new customers. We wonder how long it will be before Sky Broadband joins the party.

UPDATE 1:34pm

TalkTalk has now put out a comment.

Jonathan Kini, MD of TalkTalk Direct Business and Consumer, said:

“We believe fast, affordable, full fibre broadband should be accessible to all. This has been brought into even sharper focus by the pandemic, so we’re thrilled that people across Peterborough can now benefit from the UK’s latest fibre technology thanks to our new Future Fibre packages.”

Leave a Comment
24 Responses
  1. Avatar The Facts says:

    ‘ in four UK cities including Aberdeen, Bolton, Milton Keynes and Peterborough’.
    Including? That is 4.
    Is Bolton a city?

    1. Avatar MikeC says:

      It was a town last time I visited

    2. Avatar Optical says:

      Bolton covers a huge area,large enough to be a city,but is still only a town.

    3. Avatar Andy Tucker says:

      Milton Keynes isn’t a city either

  2. Avatar Robert says:

    Any comment on the actual rollout would be possibly more constructive rather than squabbling over town vs city nonsense.
    Strange priorities some people hav.

    1. Avatar MikeC says:

      I think it was just a comment Robert in the comments section, but you’d have to ask the facts on that one.

  3. Avatar James™ says:

    Does anyone actually know what speed tiers CityFibre actually offers for wholesale?

    Like Vodafone sells 100Mbps, and TalkTalk sells 150Mbps but what is the sync speed? Openreach sync is 160 Mbit/s down and 30 Mbit/s upload for TalkTalk’s 150 package!

  4. Avatar SimonR says:

    Interesting – my CityFibre line in Peterborough is due to go live any day now, so I may have a choice. Although I had worked out everything I needed to do to connect my router to Vodafone’s connection directly, but still…

  5. Avatar Name says:

    Why 147Mbps and not 149 or 151.5?

    1. Mark Jackson Mark Jackson says:

      The ASA’s rule on advertising average (median) speeds as measured at peak time.

  6. Avatar Billy Nomates says:

    Milton Keynes has so many options. Cityfibre, virgin gigafast, openreach FTTP, hyperoptic, OFNL.

    20 minutes down the road in Bedford .. 0 fibre.

    grumble grumble

    1. Avatar occasionally factual says:

      OFNL are only in new build properties paid for by the developers and given Bedford has lots of new builds, it is 100% down to the rubbish property developers for not using OFNL.

      Ditto for Openreach as they offer cheap or even free FTTP installs to large developments. Also MK was the large scale test site for BT’s FTTP plans (going back to 2000 and then again in 2010) and it took many years to get to where they are today with a high coverage level.

      Hyperoptic focus on blocks of flats so no reason why Bedford couldn’t have their services. Again it is down to leasehold owners (normally the original developers) to organise.

      And Virgin Gigafast in Milton Keynes? Must be a very small deployment as the area is pretty much devoid of Virgin Media infrastructure.

      Cityfibre? Well they only install in areas where they have a good economic case and I guess that favoured Milton Keynes currently.

      So the common thing is bad developers, bad leaseholders and not a good economic case for investment in the current environment. Hardly MK’s fault.

    2. Avatar Billy Nomates says:

      wasn’t blaming anyone, just grumbling. It’s so close to us, but we’re left behind. It’s not like we’re unique in the matter either. Again, just grumbling. I totally agree we’ve got a lot of new builds many of them can’t even get FTTC, that’s what put us off some new builds too. I seriously picked my house because it could get broadband when a new build couldn’t.. well that and the poor quality of the new builds.

      But it’s in Cambridge, it’s in peterborough, it’s in MK but there’s us stuck in the middle with nothing. The local council is busy denying 5G masts too .. while saying they spent millions on “superfast” which I’m sceptical of too I don’t think Bedford borough council spent a penny on superfast in our town.

      I just wish we had the same as everyone around us.

    3. Avatar Optimist says:

      Billy – are there elections for your local council this year? You could ask your candidates what they plan to do, or consider standing as a candidate yourself.

    4. Avatar occasionally factual says:

      @Billy

      I guessed so but I wanted to highlight that Milton Keynes didn’t just get everything in a short space of time. And that a lot of the issues facing towns like Bedford are solvable IF people hold others to account.

      Every time I pass Bedford there are more new builds going up, I wonder if people buying these properties are using contract law to get FTTP installed by the developers? Or are they just buying them and believing the sales staff about what is happening? I can guess what the answer is there.

      Also Milton Keynes has a hell of a lot of properties that have been built with ducting for BT and others to use so it is easier to roll out FTTP to large areas. And even when Cityfibre came and used their own ducting, in large parts of the town it was easy to achieve. Due to the newer built properties.

      An old town area like central Bedford is a nightmare for civil works so you can understand companies going for the cheaper and easier areas first.

      I remember complaining when all I could get was 512K ADSL and other people were getting ADSL Max then ADSL2. Took a long time to get away from that in comparison to others I knew. Fingers crossed that things improve in Bedford in a reasonable time frame.

    5. Avatar Billy Nomates says:

      @occasionally factual

      Sorry hadn’t checked for replies. I’m not in a new build. But I have agreed that there is something bad going on when they can’t even get FTTC let alone FTTP. We had put a deposit down on a new build in Cardington (thankfully totally refundable) but when i asked about Broadband (which as a home worker is essential) the developer flat out said that OR/Virgin can’t come in until it’s 100% completed and that I should “get a dongle” (is it 2009 again?) and I didn’t buy a word of that.

      About holding them to account, let’s see .. I’ve emailed the prime minister, or at least his office, who did send me a reply saying and i quote

      The Ministry for Housing, Communities and Local Government, are responsible for the planning
      process for digital infrastructure deployment, and you may want to contact them

      Like, why couldn’t you have sent my question to them ?

      Anyway, I have contacted the local councillors, and my MP and had poor responses. The last 5G mast that BBC (bedford council) rejected, they rejected because it would “spoil the view”… except that the “view” is of an industrial estate.. so wrap your head around that one. I actually wondered if they had denied this one because it’s one close to me but that’s probably just me being paranoid. We do also have our own local anti-5G club in the town and we’ve suffered burned down masts from the tinfoil hat brigade too.

      Personally I’d love to be in charge of the towns broadband rollout etc, because I actually know something about the subject unlike the lady in charge of broadband at present. Not sure they would vote for me though? The local councillors even sided with me and said they too suffer from poor mobile/broadband but that they were powerless to intervene with planning cases.

      I’m unsure why openreach applications state something like ‘ this isn’t an application and is notification only, the council has no powers to decide ‘ but they do for masts. Someone here really truly hates 5G and decent broadband and only allows VM to run the show. We have GFast too, on about 3 cabinets and it’s totally useless.

      BBC even told me they had spent tons of money implementing broadband in the town, and if it weren’t for the council, we’d have nothing. I don’t buy that either, not for a second.

      How does one become the broadband guy in the council ? 😀

  7. Avatar Mr Sean Smith says:

    Well according to TT I cant get the fibre service in Peterborough even though I can order CF via Vodafone.

    Wonder how long this will take. Im with VM and they are expensive so I am looking to jump ship.

    1. Avatar James™ says:

      https://new.talktalk.co.uk/broadband/fttp

      They want you to call after you out in postcode

  8. Avatar Man in Black says:

    Vodafone has a special deal in 12 areas where they have 12 months of exclusivity to be the sole ISP using the CityFibre network. When the 12 months is up you will be able to order with TalkTalk.

    1. Avatar Mr Sean Smith says:

      Why would that say its available in Peterborough if there is still an exclusive deal with Vodafone still?

      It must have come to an end.

    2. Avatar SimonR says:

      I don’t know the terms of the exclusivity deal, but the first Peterborough customers connected over two years ago now.

    1. Avatar Mr Sean Smith says:

      Yes, I read this as well a few months ago when looking to find out how long Vodafone has a grip on Peterborough… I even emailed CF direct and never got a response.

  9. Avatar Anthony Goodman says:

    Surprised no mention of them rolling out into Newcastle?

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