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Openreach Confirm UK Launch of 1.8Gbps and 1.2Gbps FTTP Tiers UPDATE

Tuesday, Feb 13th, 2024 (7:48 am) - Score 24,640

After a lengthy pilot programme, Openreach (BT) has finally revealed the commercial launch date and final pricing for their faster Fibre-to-the-Premises (FTTP) broadband tiers, which from 1st April 2024 will make it possible for UK ISPs to push their top download speeds to 1.2Gbps and 1.8Gbps (both 120Mbps upstream) to consumers.

The original pilot started all the way back in December 2022 (here) and was then extended multiple times to help ISPs adapt to the new tiers. So far, the only ISP to launch a consumer package based off the new tiers has been EE (BT), which in October 2023 launched their 1.6Gbps (average advertised speed) service for £69.99 inc. VAT per month (here). But other internet providers have opted to wait until after the end of Openreach’s pilot.

NOTE: The operator’s £15bn full fibre network currently covers over 13 million premises and aims to reach 25m by December 2026 (80%+ of the UK), before potentially rising up to 30m by 2030.

The fastest FTTP download tier available to consumers on their network today is currently 1Gbps (115Mbps upload for homes and 220Mbps for business lines). The challenge here is that Openreach currently uses a Gigabit Passive Optical Network (GPON), which places limitations on how fast they can go before capacity becomes an issue.

GPON supports a capacity on each trunk line of up to 2.5Gbps downstream and 1.24Gbps upstream, which needs to be shared between several premises. This makes what they’re trying to do a bit harder, especially given their strong take-up (currently c.34%).

Openreach will eventually need to push toward faster speeds via 10Gbps capable XGS-PON based products (here), but for the time being they’re focused upon squeezing as much out of GPON as they can get to help stay competitive with rivals (that’s how we end up with odd speeds like 1.2 and 1.8Gbps).

The 1.2Gbps tier is arguably more about enabling ISPs to advertise a true “average” gigabit speed of “1000Mbps+” (median as measured at peak time), which is as opposed to the c.900Mbps that most ISPs promote today on the 1Gbps tier. Meanwhile, the new 1.8Gbps option gives them something to offer users looking for a more premium tier, which narrows the gap to those offers plans like Virgin Media’s new 2Gbps package (here).

Openreach Product Manager, Matthew Sledge, said:

“Demand for high-definition streaming, online gaming, video conferencing, and other bandwidth-intensive applications has spurred a huge increase in how much broadband data we all use – and consumption is rising every single year.

Our new turbo-charged speed tiers demonstrate how our Full Fibre network is future proofed to meet these ever growing demands. And with the largest Full Fibre footprint in the UK – we’ve made sure these new speeds can provide the biggest benefit and are available to all 13 million homes and businesses that can access our Full Fibre network – whether people are living in a city, town or small remote village.”

The new service is also accompanied by two new optical modems (ONT / ONU) – the Nokia G-010G-T and ADTRAN SDX 611Q (pictured), both with 2.5Gbps LAN / Ethernet ports. In other words, anybody who orders this service, even if they already have an older ONT from Openreach (these only have 1Gbps ports), will require a brief engineer visit to replace the modem. Supporting ISPs will also need to supply similarly capable routers.

NOTE: Premises covered by Openreach’s now somewhat ancient ECI kit (mostly a few tens of thousands of properties in places like Cornwall) are not yet able to access the new tiers and can often only take sub-gigabit tiers.

As above, the new tiers will officially become available (outside of pilot) from 1st April 2024 and the standard wholesale prices for this are as follows. Please remember that this does not reflect the price that you pay as consumers (retail), since ISPs have to add all sorts of extra costs on top (e.g. 20% VAT, profit margins, network services / features / capacity etc.). EE’s pricing above is probably a reasonable guide for retail.

Standard Retail Prices (exc. VAT)

Standard Connection £120.05
Premium Connection £160.05
Standard Connection – 2.5Gb Box Swap £90
Annual rental – up to 1200Mbit/s / 120Mbit/s £470.76
Annual rental – up to 1800Mbit/s / 120Mbit/s £500.88

However, the new tiers can also benefit from Openreach’s new Equinox 2 discounts, which under the right conditions will mean that ISPs will be able to pay lower rentals.

  Annual Rental from 01/04/2024 to 31/03/2025
Up to 1200Mbit/s / 120Mbit/s £276.48
Up to 1800Mbit/s / 120Mbit/s £363.36

The Equinox 2 discounts also affect connection charges:

  Charge from 01/04/2024 to 31/03/2025
New To Network – Residential Area 2 standard connection £30.27
Non New To Network – Residential Area 2 standard connection (not same CP regrades) £60.54
Non New To Network – Residential Area 2 standard connection (same CP regrades) for 40/10 and 55/10 £60.54
Non New To Network – Residential Area 2 standard connection (same CP regrades) for all other eligible bandwidths £29.28
Non New To Network – Residential Area 3 standard connection (same CP regrades) for all eligible bandwidths £81.58

UPDATE 11:24am

We’ve added a comment from Openreach above.

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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 X (Twitter), Mastodon, Facebook and .
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197 Responses
  1. Avatar photo Kris says:

    I’m waiting on all these snazzy ISP routers that are crippled with a single 2.5Gbit port.

    EE seem to mention 1Gbit services a lot now (vs 900Mbit) so I’m wondering if they are already using the 1.2Gbit product.

    1. Avatar photo Jordan says:

      Vodafone’s pro router is really good, comes with wifi6e, SFP port and one 2.5gb port.

      But most ISP’s do provide bad routers especially EE’s “new” router

    2. Avatar photo Justin says:

      Have an eero Max7 connected to my 1.8Gbps pilot service…. 2x10GE and 2×2.5GE plus WiFi7 so even on the WiFi you can fully utilise the 1.8Gbps (in practise getting around 1.71Gbps down and just over 120Mbps up)

    3. Avatar photo Ronski says:

      Why’s a single port a problem? I’d just plug it into my 10Gbit switch 🙂

  2. Avatar photo john says:

    £70 per month is very expensive considering the poor upload speeds.Understood that their tech is outdated (why are they still rolling it out?) but they could at least offer the 220 Mbit/s they offer to businesses.

    1. Avatar photo Matt says:

      price point at how much kit they buy, they can also drop in XGS-PON in their network reasonably easily ‘afterwards’.

      100 units at ££££ vs 10,000 units at ££ – you can see why the huge push to do GPON initially, then infill will XGS-PON where the demand is makes sense.
      They also need to have the kit available, if the suppliers can’t give them that sort of volume then it doesn’t matter what they want to do, they’ll be constrained by supply.

      Altnets rolling out XGSPON will be paying a premium for the kit, as they’ll buy less of it in one go, and also won’t be pushing the supply chain as hard.

      As soon as BT can get XGS kit for similar pricing – you can bet they’ll be rolling it out so that they only need to change a profile – as they’ll still charge ISPs the regrade fee regardless of if an engineer is needed.

    2. Avatar photo anonymous says:

      “they’ll be rolling it out” – is that after trails, a POC all taking months and months, then ask for tax payer funds to fund a migration. Then a migration taking another 10 years? You mean that.
      Meanwhile 25G rolled out by everyone else 🙂

    3. Avatar photo Ivor says:

      costs less & allows them to deploy it much more quickly. Openreach’s customers (the ISPs) get what they think their end users want, not what a niche forum thinks they want.

      Remember that Openreach actually have more than 10 customers, so can’t resort to the gimmickry we’ve seen from the altnets.

    4. Avatar photo Alex says:

      Openreach is already building XGPON everywhere, they just haven’t launched any services which use it yet. They’re in no hurry to provide speeds that 99% of customers don’t want or need yet.

    5. Avatar photo anonymous says:

      Ivor, I missed you, welcome back. The great defender of BT. They have so many customers but leaked so many over the years too.

      Alex another BT defender: We get BT and some folk tell us “we don’t need” – after all, they sweated copper for decades and said FTTC was good enough and nobody needed anything faster. Well I do WANT better upload speeds and so do many others – anything remote including cloud working etc. is better with it. Not everyone sits consuming content like a passive eater, others make it and upload it.

      And the reason that BT has so many customers still is because they have had decades more time and take over a large FTTC base in many areas or ADSL customers. Many have also migrated to third parties like Virgin Media, ALTNETS and Openreach alternative ISP’s.

    6. Avatar photo anon says:

      why is a company who could have given us all fibre internet 40 years ago dragging their heels and installing poor equipment?


    7. Avatar photo Alex says:

      @Anonymous – we get that YOU want it. Have you got any peer-reviewed data which shows that millions of other people care though? Perhaps you can enlighten the major ISPs like Sky, TalkTalk and BT who I imagine don’t bother doing that kind of research on customers.

    8. Avatar photo anonymous says:

      Alex, given that BT said FTTC was fast enough and nobody needed or wanted anything faster, can you give me data as to why BT launching these faster speeds when surely, 80mbps would suffice according to them? Why the faster downloads then? Is there suddenly a mass market to provide those speeds of 1.2gbps and 1.8gbps then that warrants it?

    9. Avatar photo Sonic says:

      > @Anonymous – we get that YOU want it. Have you got any peer-reviewed data which shows that millions of other people care though?

      @Alex – do you know for a fact that millions of other people DO NOT care? How does BT know what their customers want? This is a company that almost never engages with their customers. They don’t have a clue, they think what they decide is the right approach. Companies like BT are the reason why we are decades behind the rest of the world.

    10. Avatar photo anonymous says:

      QUOTE: “Openreach is already building XGPON everywhere, they just haven’t launched any services which use it yet.”

      So I am reading from that:

      1. Wasteful in terms of GPON and XGS-PON deployment on new deployments when they could have just deployed XGS-PON even if they speed capped it for now until older areas were upgraded.
      2. Arrogance in thinking everyone waits on BT and get what they are given. Hallelujah for competition then who are doing this XGS-PON right now and have been for past few years.

    11. Avatar photo Winston Smith says:

      ‘why is a company who could have given us all fibre internet 40 years ago dragging their heels and installing poor equipment?’

      Hilarious, do you have any more pearls like this?

    12. Avatar photo Clive peters says:

      ‘why is a company who could have given us all fibre internet 40 years ago dragging their heels and installing poor equipment?’

      What country had universal FTTH 40 years ago? The tech wasn’t there

    13. Avatar photo slackshoe says:

      I’m sure he’s referring to pre-privatisation BT’s planned national fibre network in the 80s, which they were forced to abort because of the Thatcher government. It wouldn’t have given everyone fast internet there and then, but had they not been privatised the groundwork probably would have been laid a lot sooner.

    14. Avatar photo Alex says:

      Some very touchy people in these comments.
      Is it really so hard to accept that BT’s strategy has been to keep pace with mass-demand rather than go 30-40 years ahead of the market?
      Is it hard to even consider that the economics of investment in telecoms infrastructure in the UK have rarely, if ever, been as welcoming as they are today – which is why we now have so many companies investing billions to build competing full fibre networks?
      Clearly everyone here wants the same goal – world class connectivity that’s universal and great value for money. So we’re more united by that than divided by our differences. Would be great if people could be a bit less aggressive and perhaps entertain other perspectives beyond their own armchair.

    15. Avatar photo slackshoe says:

      I’m still waiting for someone to explain how multiple entities investing in their own private infrastructure, which in most cases simply covers the same areas that their competitors do, leads to a better outcome for everyone?
      If BT’s strategy was to “keep pace” then they have failed dismally at even that. And that is the whole problem, they’ve spent the last 30 years continually playing catch up with stop-gaps that they can easily profiteer from instead of investing in the future.

    16. Avatar photo THATisCuckoo says:

      but they could at least offer the 220 Mbit/s they offer to businesses.

      SO sign up to a Business tariff and get it then.

    17. Avatar photo anonymous says:

      Ok, taking this a step further on. Can you provide links to such 220mbps upload packages on BT FTTP that cost a reasonable amount extra (say £6 like VM NexFibre residential package with symmetric upload)?

      So Altnets and VM can provide as an extra or by default (often much cheaper), and you want people (residential) to pay a LOT more money for a bit of extra upstream by having to get a business package on BT which they simply don’t need that level of support SLA?

    18. Avatar photo Ivor says:

      what’s the price of a business nexfibre package? Is there one yet, considering the Virgin Media “symmetric” service you are obsessing over was only made available very recently?

      The much touted “content creator / endlessly uploading to the cloud” type, who apparently comprise over 100% of UK internet users based on this comments section, probably should have a business package no matter whose network it is.

      Important to compare like for like.

    19. Avatar photo Big Dave says:

      At the end of the day it’s a commercial decision for Openreach whether to go for XGS-PON. Unless they think it’s losing them enough customers there is no real reason for them to make the expensive transition to XGS-PON and it may be worth them carrying on with GPON until they jump straight to the following generation when it becomes available (100Gb perhaps).

    20. Avatar photo Bible is wrong says:

      Not out of date is it when only 34% of those can order have. Not gonna spend more money on something faster when 80/20 is realistically enough for everyone

    21. Avatar photo john says:

      Wow Openreach sure have some passionate white knights. I think the sheer number of comments in this thread proves there is demand for decent upload speeds. I think some people, the ones with variants of “this speed is enough for anybody” need to recognise the world doesn’t revolve around them and different people have different requirements. In most areas Openreach are the monoopoly provider and that comes with a responsibility to serve everybody. Yes competition is coming, and that’s a good thing, but it may take a decade or more before most places have a choice of service provider.

    22. Avatar photo Miguel J says:

      Came here to say exactly this.

      They need to adjust their pricing now, not just then.

      Upload/Download – Price

      940/940 – 35/pm
      1.2G/1G – 39/pm
      2G/1G – 50/pm (GPON)
      2.3/2.3 – 50/pm (XGS)

    23. Avatar photo Dean says:

      You want cheap gigabit go to fibrus

    24. Avatar photo XGS-PON_10Gbps_For_ALL says:

      Agreed, BT prices need adjusting downwards IMHO. Currently, 110Mbps is measly! you soon become quite used to having such speed as initially when the FTTP tap got switched on it blew my socks away!
      I didn’t quite think (at the time) why anybody would need faster speeds than 1G? however, you quickly get accustomed to 910/110mbps speeds and I can now see the need for faster products, especially on the upload sides.

      Goin back to the main story, I live just outside the Original 1.2Gbps / 1.8Gbps Trial area, So, fingers crossed I should be able to order OR I may just jump over to VM.. The great thing about the BDUK and FTTP rollout is now I have option’s. Now its a Buyers market! Maybe I’ll wait for Netomina 10G XGS-PON or another Altnet rollout in my area.

      We all know its heading to 10G so just launch that already and be done with it! This reminds me a lot like the days of 28kbps > 56kbps dial-up then to the 2mbps > 8mbps > 24mbps DSL days, The 38Mbps > 80Mbps FTTC Days Now its FTTP @ 1Gbps > 2.5Gbps > 8Gbps > 10Gbps.. Its all going to go the same way!

  3. Avatar photo A Stevens says:

    Happy to settle for just a tenth of that. Where’s my fibre??

  4. Avatar photo Andrew says:

    When FTTP isn’t really FTTP

    Cityfibre do symmetrical speeds no problem, I do wonder what god awful equipment Openreach are using that can’t handle symmetrical speeds

    1. Avatar photo Matt says:

      FTTP is the medium, so it definitely is FTTP.

      see my comment in reply to “john”. They’re having no issues with takeup, so perhaps they’re aiming more at wider demand, than chasing speeds.

    2. Avatar photo Alex says:

      Exactly as Matt says.
      Prioritising the needs of a tiny percentage of customers with higher prices – at the expense of providing a great service to millions – would be commercially stupid.

    3. Avatar photo anonymous says:

      So for past few years whilst others doing XGS-PON, they still roll out to this very day, legacy GPON?

      Symmetric services could be a bundle add-on anyway if you really think it would affect base prices. A number of ALNETS offering it as standard and they are still in business and a lot cheaper. Not all of them will go bankrupt as you hope.

    4. Avatar photo Optimist says:

      Many areas are now provisioned with fibre but not Openreach fibre. Why doesn’t BT use that instead of funding duplication by Openreach?

    5. Avatar photo NE555 says:

      Cityfibre are mostly GPON with exactly the same type of equipment as Openreach, although they’re starting to do XGS-PON in newer areas.

      They offer 1000/1000 on GPON because:

      1. they’re happy to take the business risk of saturating the uplink (which only has 1.2G upload capacity *in total* shared between all users on that PON)

      2. they have much lower take-up rate than Openreach, hence fewer users per PON. On Openreach’s network there will be up to 30 users on one PON, especially in areas which have completed copper to fibre transition.

    6. Avatar photo anonymous says:

      Cityfibre are UPGRADING those areas that started with GPON. They have been deploying XGS-PON for new areas.

      Here is Cityfibre’s announcement from July 2023:

      and from this site here:

  5. Avatar photo anonymous says:

    Good old Bad Telecom. Still pedalling legacy GPON and crippled upload speeds. 1.8gbps with THAT upload speed lol

    1. Avatar photo I love Starlink says:

      Is better than 76 down and 18 up. QUIT MOANING!

    2. Avatar photo Alex Atkin says:

      I want Gigabit uplink as much as the others on here, but calling 110Mbit “crippling” is hilarious.

      Most cloud services throttle uploads anyway so you need to pay for a higher tier on those too.

      For 99% of users, 110Mbit up is more than enough. But this is also why I can’t understand that Openreach wouldn’t just make it a bit bigger for their top-tiers, as the odds of having more than one customer per PON on those tiers is pretty low, so its just wasted capacity right now even on GPON.

  6. Avatar photo RightSaidFred says:

    Not sure why it’ll require an engineer visit to screw a new ONT onto a wall.

    1. Avatar photo anonymous says:

      It’s BT and its a tick box to add a charge. The excuse would be the fibre tip of the connection, but they could put an alcohol based wipe in the box for end user.

    2. Avatar photo Matt says:

      Because the ONT is set to the connection, and if someone screws up and puts the wrong detail on the system you’ll have lighty, not no likey. Also means that the user gets service up to the engineers visit to swap.

      (and BT get to charge a fee, which will help cover the cost of the ONT 🙂 )

    3. Avatar photo Ivor says:

      something tells me that BT has lots of experience unpicking the works of art end users have created with copper wiring.

      A visit avoids all that, proves the new service is working as intended and hopefully ensuresthe old ONT can be is returned for recycling or ewaste as appropriate, instead of on eBay

    4. Avatar photo Alex says:

      Might be worth considering that not everyone in this life is as able as you Fred. And that even such clever people like you can make mistakes, which end up being more costly than having an employed professional who’s paid to do the job right first time.

    5. Avatar photo anonymous says:

      As usual, no end user choice in the matter and BT enforced ruling.

      It won’t be around recycling – it always comes down to money; and the charge to the ISP means a profit in it.

  7. Avatar photo Liam says:

    Complete rip off. 5G homebroad is the way to go.

    1. Avatar photo Cognizant says:

      It really isn’t.

    2. Avatar photo anonymous says:

      Yeah, moving on… 🙂

    3. Avatar photo Crotchety says:

      Think you will find 5g home b/b is a viable option for many people. Myself I get between 300 and 500mbs and uploads of 35 to 50, obviously its not as stable as fibre, but considering I’m paying £15.00 per month its a good service.
      With these 1 gig+ speeds, can the providing services give that sort of speed to everyone on 1 gig+, surely there must be problems with that ?

    4. Avatar photo I love Starlink says:

      Was for me until it started to grind to a halt. Fixed services are always the way to go.. For anything else there is Starlink. Although people seem too tight to pay for it but happy to smoke and drink and in some cases snort the white stuff.. Odd odd people .

    5. Avatar photo XGS-PON 10G_For_ALL says:

      errrm!! idk, about that!
      5G Down @ peek is about ~230mbps + bursting to like ~450mbps
      yet upload is poor 30-50mbps whilst you compare that to my home Line

      FTTP 720mbps peek and max 900-930’s mbps upload is solid 110.
      Plus with 5G you have the whole “Fair Usage” T&C which is much more prevalent/impactful on usage than say a landline ISP (correct me if Im wrong) Mobile ISP’s have stricter usage policies or at the very least are more apparent when using mobile Vs FTTP.
      There is definitely edge cases where 5G may be a better fit that physical Fibre but idk if its the final solution, to Connectivity Utopia!

    6. Avatar photo Alex Atkin says:

      The problem is 5G varies a lot. On Three when they first launched it here it would regularly be faster than my FTTP hitting something like 1.2Gbit down, 120Mbit up.

      Testing just now I got 610/110, but the latency is awful at 360-500ms under load. Unlike fixed broadband, this latency penalty happens even when seemingly not fully loaded. So its not exactly great for home broadband IMO.

      I did test it for a while as my primary connection and it was fine sometimes, caused issues at other times. So its just not good if you want a reliable connection, but a good cheap option as a backup.

  8. Avatar photo Ex Telecom Engineer says:

    Probably most UK residential customers, in the high 90’s percent range, would be more than happy with 100mb/s download, and are unlikely to be bothered about fast upload capacity. Most residential customers will use their broadband connection for browsing, watching streaming content and some gaming. Above 100mb/s the gamers ping value’s are far more important than download speed, which will be decided by the number of hops and distance to the gaming server, not Gb/s upload or download speeds; Also gaming is moving to a cloud model, so the days of downloading massive updates are numbered, so do average residential customers need Gb/s speeds? I’d suggest pricing would be more important to the average residential business user.
    For the few small business users who might offer something like content streaming services, requiring symmetrical working, Openreach could overlay XGS-PON over the same Fibre as the GPON service and market as a business service with appropriate SLA’s.

    1. Avatar photo Ex Telecom Engineer says:

      “more important to the average residential business user”
      I meant to type average residential user, not “average residential business user”.

    2. Avatar photo guff says:

      what an absolute load of guff.

      “Let me tell you what you want and what other people in this country want”.

      This is your opinion. It’s not fact.

    3. Avatar photo anonymous says:

      Current BT employees (or protecting family or friends that are) or ex-employees, still protecting a racket.

    4. Avatar photo anonymous says:

      As for introducing under Business SLA packages, yeah the market will give a two finger salute to that once ALTNETs established (and likely consolidated down from today) and VM have done with HFC to FTTP roll out (2028).

    5. Avatar photo anonymous says:

      “Probably most UK residential customers, in the high 90’s percent range” – facts, figures please from a credible source? Or is it your finger in the air figure?

    6. Avatar photo Clive Sellers butler. says:

      So tired of boomers repeating this line.
      If residential users are fine with 100 mbit then why are BT/OR scrambling to play catch up in the fibre game? Is it because maybe you’re wrong and people do want a faster link? I think so. Not everyone is a boomer who uses the internet to scold younger folk, type out their fantasies as if they were representative of the world or to look at pictures of their grandkids on Facebook. Man I wish old people weren’t allowed to use the internet. It’s people like boomer here that caused us to be in this position regarding fibre in the first place. Oh ho nobody needs it. Wait a sec everyone is delivering FTTP now. Damn, maybe they do..

    7. Avatar photo Ivor says:

      how are they playing catch up? they have more coverage than anyone else and that was true even in their FTTC-first days, they’re far more financially successful, their takeup numbers exceed any altnet.

      It might be a disappointment to those who run speedtests on their altnet lines and complain when they only get 7Gbps up instead of 8, but not for the millions who use their services despite the presence of “competition” (even though so many altnets are reliant on OR’s physical plant)

      Clive Selley (sic) is likely pretty pleased with how things are going.

      signed, a “BT shill” who is not a boomer

    8. Avatar photo anonymous says:

      Define old?
      I’m sure the strategists and accountants at BT who make the decisions on infrastructure investment are not all “old” and many somewhere between 25-50.

      As for “old” people JUST looking at pictures if the grandkids – well that’s an assumption, and assumptions can be right and wrong because they are just that, an assumption.

    9. Avatar photo anonymous says:

      Ivor, please. really.

      Dreams of 7gbps up – not on Bad Telecom. Not even in the year 3024 🙂
      They’ll be migrating from GPON to XGS-PON by then in a “major” roll out programme following years of trials and POC.

    10. Avatar photo Ex Telecom Engineer says:

      Well guff if you want to pay for bandwidth that you’ll never come close to utilising, then that’s up to you. Personally I’ll probably go for something in the region of 100Mb/s, when FTTP soon becomes available on my road, since i’m not having any issues with my current 35Mb/s FTTC service. I’ll probably go for something like the Plusnet 145/30 Mb/s service, which’d be more than sufficient to see us well into the future.


      The guff is the narrative that average households need Gb/s broadband speeds.

    11. Avatar photo anonymous says:

      everyone needs < 100mbit because I do. Therefore 99% of people do.
      I have nothing to back that up, but im totally right, because I said so.

    12. Avatar photo Gordon says:

      Bit of an assumption about gamers.

      I consider myself a gamer but don’t do a lot of online gaming these days. Ping I don’t care about so much as my gaming is mostly offline. It is important for online gaming but not so important for all gamers.

      I would like to be able to download a large game or update in a short time and would definitely prefer 1gb speeds just for that benefit. That’s going to be my own cost/benefit decision when I have the choice

    13. Avatar photo Ex Telecom Engineer says:

      It’s up to everyone to decide how much they want to pay for a service they’ll never fully utilise; It reminds me of the phrase, “fools and their money are easily parted”.

    14. Avatar photo anonymous says:

      People have hobbies. One of those could be making videos or clips. They use bandwidth to upload. Similarly, cloud backups or off site backups of user content which could be gigabits of data upload faster on a faster connection. Working from home and multiple connections from family members streaming content, uploading content are all valid reasons. Multiple people with multiple cloud storage accounts.

      Also downloading video from catch up services to a device, purchased iTunes videos and music, downloading of online games or content used in games – these all download faster on faster connections. People broadcast on YouTube channels too, or upload whilst playing a game – upload speeds work best when a decent speed.

      Just because one person is happy with 36mbps service is laughable.

    15. Avatar photo anonymous says:

      “It’s up to everyone to decide how much they want to pay for a service they’ll never fully utilise;”

      and yet you’ve said 99% of people are happy with < 100mbit.
      I don't know how you know this, I suspect you don't and you just think i'll just sling that out there and nobody will call me out on it. Well I am. Show your source.

      "never fully utilise".

      Yes internet links must be at 100% utilisation, all the time, every day, otherwise it's a total waste of money and we could just go back to 56k modems.

      lol. Weak argument. Must be an MP.

    16. Avatar photo anonymous says:

      Ex-Telecom Engineer said:

      “It’s up to everyone to decide how much they want to pay for a service they’ll never fully utilise; It reminds me of the phrase, “fools and their money are easily parted”.”

      OK BT give us the choice then? CHOICE. A difficult word for some. Let those who want to pay a (non deliberate inflated) supplement for symmetric services then?

      Everyone is happy then. Yay!

      btw. Altnets don’t seem to hit this stumbling block. A number are symmetric by default and not all will fail, some will consolidate, sure. It’s not offering symmetric that would cause it though.

    17. Avatar photo slackshoe says:

      If cloud gaming ever takes off, you can expect a whole lot more network congestion as millions of people will be pulling streams at 30-50mbps for hours on end, in order to enjoy games at anywhere near the quality offered by a console or gaming PC.

    18. Avatar photo anonymous says:

      And what do slower speeds mean? More traffic piling up.
      Faster speeds (or more lanes) allows quick exit at destination, less congestion.

    19. Avatar photo Chris W says:

      “Also gaming is moving to a cloud model, so the days of downloading massive updates are numbered”

      Current Xbox rumours aside, there’s really no sign at this point that gaming is moving entirely to cloud gaming, its still very much just an option for convenience or those causal users who don’t want the initial outlay on hardware. Games will continue to get bigger and we’ll be downloading them for many, many years yet.

    20. Avatar photo Cognizant says:

      I bet Ex Engineer only owns a 1.0 Ford Fiesta as that also gets him from A to B and he doesn’t need a Ferrari.

      Yet loads of people own Ferraris…

    21. Avatar photo Alex Atkin says:

      I think there is evidence in fact to show that were moving back away from cloud processing, as businesses realised the ongoing cost this imposes on them.

      Perhaps less relevant to gaming where you are paying a subscription, but we are seeing them trying to move AI workloads from the cloud onto local devices, when that service was being offered at no cost. Both because of the cost to them to run those services, but also because people are concerned about uploading all their personal content to the cloud and what a cloud AI may be doing with that content.

      I’m thinking specifically of Samsung here, where they made a big deal about a lot of their new AI functions on the S22 running on-device.

      Personally, I’ve tried a lot of cloud gaming and consider it barely passable in the best cases. Even Steam in-home streaming the inherent latency of how it works makes some games feel really bad, given some games have marginal input latency when run locally to begin with. Adding more for streaming is at odds with the techniques they are using to save GPU power, such as DLSS, frame generation, any post-processing, which all adds display latency.

  9. Avatar photo anon says:

    I mean I would rather pay openreach for 1000/1000 than have 2000/100 or 3000/100
    it’s very Virginmedia-esque of them to limit it to such a small amount of upload. Yes I know, you’re going to tell me about leased lines now, fantastic

    1. Avatar photo anonymous says:

      VM have TECHNICAL reasons on their DocSIS HFC networks and RFoG. VM offer symmetric services on all download speed tiers on their new network under “NexFibre” for a small additional charge. It’s also likely that when the HFC network gets replaced by FTTP (by 2028) that symmetric is also available on that network too.

      So VM realise their HFC network won’t cut it, and at least doing a major upgrade programme. They certainly aren’t saying people don’t need it.

    2. Avatar photo lololololol says:

      lol technical reasons. despite their parent company offering 1000/1000.
      despite the technology in question supporting it.
      despite the company saying they can do it.


    3. Avatar photo anonymous says:

      What ARE you talking about???

      HFC CANNOT do 1000gbps upload in the UK. Its a thing called spectrum, noise and bandwidth allocation. Its just not possible on DocSIS 3.1. They aren’t investing in DocSIS 4 because the cost is about the same as doing full fttp which they are doing and yes, the new NexFibre network offers 2,2gbps and symmetric if you pat the small extra £6.

    4. Avatar photo anonymous says:

      mbps – typo

    5. Avatar photo Cognizant says:

      I can shortly order any package from VM on a symmetrical basis, yes that doesn’t cover their whole network and only the XGS-PON nexfibre bits, but they are working on upgrading the entire network and they have set the precedent. We can no longer accuse VM of have poor upload.

    6. Avatar photo Anonymous says:

      HFC actually can do 1000/1000 virgin just doesn’t want it to. UPC does it and it’s the exact same technology run by the same parent liberty global.

      If they couldn’t do it. Why are they saying their entire network will do soon. HFC or FTTP.

      I’m so tired of all the teenagers who hooked up their parents DSL and now think they’re qualified network engineers. Back to Reddit please.

    7. Avatar photo Ivor says:

      which UPC country(ies) are you referring to? It’s a fairly wide area.

      Considering that companies like Comcast – who are perhaps at the apex of HFC engineering – don’t have symmetric DOCSIS outside of very limited trial areas and select customers, I’d be surprised if UPC have done more.

      What is clear is that FDX needs a lot of HFC network surgery to make it possible. It isn’t something you can just chuck onto an existing network.

      The fact that VM is owned by LG doesn’t really mean a lot. VM is itself the product of a merger of like 15 cable companies, all of whom used different equipment and network designs. Some parts of their service area didn’t get interactive TV or broadband for some time because the network couldn’t handle two-way comms.

      It’s still most apparent in their legacy phone network where they have five or six “colours” which denote switch vendor/config and thus different features or behaviours.

      So that’s probably why VM are saying they are going straight to fibre, rather than spending much of the same effort/expense lipsticking a pig.

      — an actual network engineer who has worked for ISPs and big name equipment vendors

    8. Avatar photo anon says:

      ” an actual network engineer who has worked for ISPs and big name equipment vendors ”

      lmao. sure you have. You hooked up pfsense and said “I’m a network engineer now”.
      back to reddit please.

    9. Avatar photo Ivor says:

      I appreciate the well written and researched rebuttal to my comment.

      It probably says more about *your* credentials than it does mine!

    10. Avatar photo anonymous says:

      FFS. DocSIS 3.1 in the UK CANNOT and WILL NEVER do 1000mbps symmetric. You are talking horse.
      The way the network is engineered and bandwidth will not allow. There is too much noise in certain parts of VM’s network and low SNR in some parts. It cost a lot of money to get to DocSiS 3.1 alone and be able to offer the 100/110 mbps upload on HFC and a lot of customers have noise/SNR issues even on that.

      Only DocSIS 4 would offer higher than 3.1, BUT VM would have to spend as much or more to get there as this requires more splits/segmentation. This is why IN THE UK, they are going to FTTP XGS-PON instead.

      Please stop peddling nonsense.

    11. Avatar photo back to reddit says:

      back to reddit please armchair network engineers, take your copy of Sams tech yourself network engineering in 24hours with you.

  10. Avatar photo Phil says:

    Openreach really poor on upload always is (make me think this isn’t true full fibre)

    1. Avatar photo Matt says:

      As other comments. It’s full fibre. They just don’t oversell as much on the upstream.
      BT got burnt overselling before – we should be reasonably happy they’re doing this until XGS is standard / they have better up to 10gig packages.

    2. Avatar photo anonymous says:

      Why should we be happy???? Eternally grateful????

      Competition. VM and ALTNETS are out there. the ALTNETS will consolidate eventually, but symmetric services from competition will exist. I’d rather be happy with one o those than BT’s legacy offerings.

  11. Avatar photo OP says:

    is this even full fibre? openreach caps upload at 100mbps so its maybe half fibre half docsis or somet weird thing openreach is doing.

    1. Avatar photo Cognizant says:

      Yes, it is full fibre.

    2. Avatar photo Matt says:

      Have you read the article? or any of the comments?

      GPON is limited to half the upload vs download. Your download will suck if the US is contended. DS being contended is less noticeable to users.

      It also protects their leased line business, so they dont offer Business FTTP 1000/1000 lines, because it’d cannibalize their expensive LL business.

      We can be unhappy it’s not faster – but the reality is 99% of people the OR packages are more than adequate.

    3. Avatar photo OP says:

      protect they leased lines from what? why is openreach acting like everyone will be spamming 1000mbps of uploads lol

    4. Avatar photo OP says:

      dont get why MATT is angry, im just asking a question as all other companies do same download/upload, what is stopping openreach really… its just sus, full fibre should be able to do 10g 10g if they want so why not 1g 1g

    5. Avatar photo anonymous says:

      99% – another figure chucked out. Please share the credible source for this?

      Is is the same 99% that are happy with less than 900mbps and no need for 1.2gbps and 1.8gbps then? If so, WHY are BT trying to compete with those new services?

      Assumption is you also have data to support those new tiers which shows support for them offering the news services as mass market needs it then?

  12. Avatar photo Phil says:

    This isn’t full fibre. Full Fibre is both same speed! More likely hybid fibre from openreach similiar to hyber 5G NSA higher downstream but poor upstream

    1. Avatar photo anon says:

      has this site been featured on HUKD today or something? because there seems to be a whole lot of deliberate misinformation going on today. “Full fibre” has got nothing to do with speed. Full fibre means that it’s fibre from the exchange or street to your home. You can have full fibre at 1mbit.

      Again, nothing to do with speed, it’s about the type of cable coming into your home. Nothing more.

    2. Avatar photo anonymous says:

      agreed. I think people mean the way its knee capped with upload particularly on BT/Openreach. Remember TCP/IP needs a certain overhead too to it all degrades overall available capacity.

    3. Avatar photo Cognizant says:

      Phil, it is full fibre.

  13. Avatar photo Anon says:

    Funny that “Matt” and the ex telecom boomer all use the same token OR phrases
    Isn’t it. 99% of people are happy. Because I’ve personally interviewed 99% of OR customers and they’ve all told me they’re fine with 22mbit. Openreach forever.

    1. Avatar photo Ex Telecom Engineer says:

      I’m just being honest. Apart from fanboy bragging rights I don’t see why any average residential household needs Gb/s service, when most of the time they’ll use a fraction of the bandwidth available. Even for the occasional massive game updates, is it worth paying twice the monthly cost when you could simply download in the background, or overnight?
      The CP’s know that most of the time GB/s customers will only use the same bandwidth as lower rate customers, and rely on that.
      The access/core routers and backhaul networks wouldn’t be able to cope if all users utilised Gb/s speeds continually, that’s a fact, so any gamer downloading a big update would likely be slowed down by bottlenecks at the various game servers anyway, and possibly by other factors if it coincides with something like big sporting events competing for core network bandwidth.

    2. Avatar photo anonymous says:

      Simples. I and many others who use cloud storage and do creative work, WANT the ability to download and upload as fast as possible. If its a lower speed but contention vastly improved then that can be similar as data still gets there faster to a certain point.

      Now the old spin, of economics only does not bode well. Competitors been doing this for past few years already. In short, way ahead of BT. Even VM (an established player even if their customer service is commented on) joining the party. Now, the ALTNETS headline price might be too cheap in some cases, and I get that, but not by offering symmetric will they go bankrupt because as you point out virtually nobody would use their bandwidth 100% of the time.

      And lets face it, had BT NOT continued to deploy legacy GPON, they would have even more bandwidth available to them at a street level. So smart ALTNETS already ahead there and Cityfibre who were GPON once upon a time are upgrading to XGS-PON for those areas 🙂

    3. Avatar photo GNewton says:

      @Ex Telecom Engineer:
      You have obviously never run a proper home office. Are you even using Cloud services? E.g. have you ever done a simple backup to a Cloud server? Have you ever done graphics design? Transferred large files?

      It seems you are unable to distinguish between office workers and home users.

      The fact is, there is a market gap between business leased line services (which are still quite over-priced) and a simple home user line. This is were symmetric fibre comes into play, and Openreach simply isn’t able to serve this market segment.

    4. Avatar photo Alex says:

      Interested in how big this market segment is? And I’m sure the ISPs would be.
      Can you provide some factual data to support the theory?

    5. Avatar photo anonymous says:

      So, VM WILL offer symmetric on HFC by 2028 when they’ve upgraded to FTTP fully. They are doing it now across all speed tiers on the newest separate network NexFibre. Many Altnets also doing.

      If VM had completed the HFC upgrade today that would mean circa 8.5 million potential user base who could have [choice] of taking it – possibly more including the Altnets as well as NexFibre. Given that it will take till 2028, the numbers would be higher as Altnets deployed more and got more customer base.

      They must think there is a reason for symmetric then and they didn’t pick GPON like BT has and Cityfibre that did initially is upgrading to XGS-PON for those initial areas.

      Nope, the real issue is BT continuing with legacy GPON deployments for new builds and can’t cope, and protecting of their leased line business.

    6. Avatar photo XGS says:

      ‘So, VM WILL offer symmetric on HFC by 2028 when they’ve upgraded to FTTP fully.’

      Think there’s a small issue with that statement.

    7. Avatar photo GNewton says:

      @Alex: You can get some rough idea about the symmetric fibre market demand by taking a quick look at this recent ISPReview article:


      Then find the percentage of overlap between Openreach fibre and altnet fibre (the latter being mostly symmetric). In these overlapping areas, find out how much the altnet takeup rate it. That should give you a rough idea about the market demands for symmetric fibre.

      Another good resource to dig deeper into it is at the thinkbroadband.com site.

    8. Avatar photo Alex says:

      It’s a good try GNewton but those are extremely loose parameters and can’t possibly give you a proxy for asymmetric demand.

      There are many more variables that feed the decision making in competitive network areas. I was looking for a more thorough and nationally representative consumer survey of what matters most to households when considering what broadband to buy. Something a bit like this –


      It suggests price, reliability, understanding of packages, better service wraps and self service all come highest on customers’ wish lists. Asymmetric speeds aren’t even mentioned as far as I can see.

  14. Avatar photo Jonny says:

    The comments on any Openreach story are hilarious. If they aren’t doing a good enough job then they’ll lose all their customers to altnets and cease to operate as a going concern, which is presumably what some people want. So why care that they aren’t offering the service tiers that you are convinced they need to?

    1. Avatar photo anon says:

      Openreach / BT were handed an absolute goldmine by the government. The phone lines, the ducts, the cabling were mostly all laid down when it was GPO. The taxpayer paid for all of it, and then the government handed it all over to BT who held an absolute monopoly for decades. Then they refused to give us fibre when Europe was busy laying it everywhere. Now that altnets are brining out fibre suddenly Openreach are interested in full fibre everywhere. And almost all altnets have to pay Openreach to use “their” private infrastructure. That private infrastructure that was given to them for free by the government. Then, they decide that well you only get to have 100/200mbit upload speed. Because some boomer like “Matt” or the Telecom guy (they’re the same person) decided that 99 of people want what he says they want.

      So no, Openreach can do as bad as they want and still be in business, because others are forced to use them to provide infrastructure. They’re forced to pay a company who got given their infrastructure for free, paid for by the taxpayer. Openreach could do absolutely nothing if they wanted, and they’d still make money. Not to mention the unfair advantages and literal billion of pounds the government gave them over the years.

      I’m tired of the shilling. Really. Openreach sucks, everyone knows it. But some people have no choice in the matter. It’s them or nobody. They’re not doing a good job, and the brown nosing on this site is rather odd indeed.

    2. Avatar photo anonymous says:

      Read the forum. It’s all there.

    3. Avatar photo anonymous says:

      Jonny, just going through your comment “If they aren’t doing a good enough job then they’ll lose all their customers to altnets and cease to operate”.

      Now there are official figures that tell me how many are on Virgin Media, an indication of ALTNETS and even on Openreach’s network, Sky, TalkTalk, Vodafone, Zen, AAISP and many others. So all those are not directly BT customers. How many MILLIONS of people lost to competitors there then, given they are doing such a great job? Now, going further, many people may ONLY have the choice of a BT network in their area too forcing them to use BT infrastructure.

    4. Avatar photo Ex Telecom Engineer says:

      “Openreach / BT were handed an absolute goldmine by the government. The phone lines, the ducts, the cabling were mostly all laid down when it was GPO. The taxpayer paid for all of it, and then the government handed it all over to BT who held an absolute monopoly for decades”

      Anon, stop making stuff up. The Government made Billions selling BT, nothing was given away, shareholders bought the company.


    5. Avatar photo Ivor says:

      BT’s shareholders bought the infrastructure at privatisation.

      As for “unfair advantages” – could you list them?

      In reality, it was the brand new cable companies who received every unfair advantage in the book – eg regional monopolies, BT being banned from offering TV services, the classic story of BT having FTTP ready to go but the government prevented a mass rollout. They still failed to unseat BT or Sky’s dominance in their respective businesses.

      Even in the ADSL days the unfair advantages were very much not in BT’s favour, with regulated IPstream pricing to make LLU look more attractive.

      Only now are seeing what happens when an actual free market develops – and the altnets don’t like it (as the endless whining to Ofcom is testament)

    6. Avatar photo bill says:

      As for “unfair advantages” – could you list them?.

      1. Having infrastructure everywhere, including places where others are not permitted to.
      2. Being given preferential treatment for government comms contracts.
      3. The billions in funding.
      4. An absolute monopoloy from 1960-2000s.

      would you like some more?

    7. Avatar photo Ivor says:

      1. where are others not permitted to dig? this isn’t the US. OR has been required to offer PIA to its “competition” so they can avoid the effort/expense of doing their own infrastructure. Many so called “altnets” use it.

      2. such as? Where I am, it’s CityFibre who have the county network contract and have used that to justify overbuilding Openreach and Virgin, and CF also have been given subsidies to do rural contracts here too.

      3. BDUK was open to all. Look at Devon and Somerset as an example of “anyone but Openreach” turns out.

      4. BT were required to provide access to the Mercury network from the 80s. The cable companies broke BT’s phone monopoly in cherry picked high-profit-potential areas. Point 1 also applies here.

    8. Avatar photo GNewton says:

      @Ex Telecom Engineer:

      “Anon, stop making stuff up. The Government made Billions selling BT, nothing was given away, shareholders bought the company.”

      This is even worse. So the taxpayers paid for the original GPO, and then the same government got even more out of it by selling this telecom for Billions. Funny how some hardcore BT fans don’t see the irony of this.

  15. Avatar photo anonymous says:

    As I said previously the brown nosing is likely to be one of these (with small exceptions):

    1. Ex-BT employees
    2. Current BT employees
    3. Friends or family members who are BT employees
    4. Shareholders

    1. Avatar photo Winston Smith says:

      Becuase no-one could possibly disagree with you otherwise.

    2. Avatar photo anonymous says:

      Hi Winston,

      I did say “with small exceptions”. The disclaimer was there.

    3. Avatar photo O'Brien says:

      lol “winston” here is one of the biggest BT shills on ISPr.

    4. Avatar photo slackshoe says:

      With the BT share price going further and further down the toilet, you’d think shareholders would be desperate to move on from the complacency of the old days.

    5. Avatar photo Winston Smith says:

      Can you give an example of my ‘shilling’?
      Are you confusing a shill with someone who disagrees with you?
      BTW I work in video games, I have VM broadband (because there is little other choice) and I don’t own any BT shares.

    6. Avatar photo anonymous says:

      Innovation in residential market is not one of their strongest points. This is why they now have some competition. If they don’t want to do it, others are/will be doing it. That’s why we need an effective regulator who ensures that competition cannot be stifled through decades of advantage and being able to potentially under-price to erase competition only to hike after, or inflate PIA charges. Oh wait…..

      However I do agree that ALNETS should offer PIA access to BT (only) as well given that PIA the other way is available. It’s unlikely that BT would want to use it though (but that is just my view).

    7. Avatar photo RightSaidFred says:

      Altnets are awesome, especially the ones that have a working network between me.

      I’m going to list all of those Altnets below:

      Oh, that was quick. There aren’t any.

      If be small exceptions you mean 70% of the population (those that have no access to an Altnet), then sure, what you say might be…

      …nope, it’s still wrong.

      If the choice is between having a service and not having one, having one with any provider is the better choice…even if that is Openreach asymmetrical. Don’t need to have (or had) any kind of relationship with BT to hold that opinion.

    8. Avatar photo anonymous says:

      and I don’t think anyone would disagree with you if BT the only choice.

      Equally though, by your own statement, that is part of the reason BT also “has the numbers”. Areas where only BT is available, brand been around for years so known everywhere, advertising on TV. They inherit lots of existing users from Dialup/PSTN/Modem > ADSL > FTTC > FTTP for example.

      The conversation in this thread is about deploying legacy GPON which has bandwidth constraints, and making the Openreach service better by allowing symmetric upload and download speeds even if its an (non deliberate inflated) extra (like VM are doing on their new NexFibre network). Who wants to wait on the BT network for another migration taking years and years to XGS-PON when others are just doing it.

      It’s not about being against BT as a personal thing.

  16. Avatar photo AJR says:

    Loads of very strange (collaborated?) negative comments on this one!

    It was only a matter of time that these higher tiers were likely to be offered, hopefully bridge the gap to XGS for those that need.

    I’m one of the strange ones happy enough with my 40Mbps FTTC, even with a young family and plenty devices.

    1. Avatar photo anonymous says:

      Pleased your 40mbps is working for you. Sounds like you don’t support the 1.2gbps and 1.8gbps new service tiers from BT then and wondering why they offer them?

      For others though 40mbps won’t cut it and neither do the upload speeds, hence the discussion. And that is what it’s about, choice for end customers…..

    2. Avatar photo Iain says:

      (anonymous, I don’t think AJR’s saying nobody wants higher speeds. They even talk of bridging the gap until XGS-PON is deployed)

    3. Avatar photo anon says:

      I’m one of those BT employees who is totally fine with copper cables.
      In fact, 99% of people have personally told me they too are also fine with 40mbit.
      You can’t even fully utilise all of 40mbit. Nobody needs more. 640kb of memory is fine.

    4. Avatar photo anon says:

      can’t even spell his own name correctly.
      opinions disregarded

    5. Avatar photo Oggy says:


      can’t even spell his own name correctly.
      opinions disregarded”

      You do know that Iain is a name, right? Popular in Scotland.

      Or are you just trying to make yourself look extremely stupid?

    6. Avatar photo anon says:

      Scottish people type words like “Ken” instead of can. Because they think it’s cute/funny/unique/special.

      It doesn’t make it right.

      Iain is no better than someone calling themselves Klaiyer instead of Claire.

    7. Avatar photo slackshoe says:

      “Ken” doesn’t mean “can” in Scots. Ian is an anglicisation of Iain, a Gaelic name. Really just proving your little Englander ignorance to everyone here, aren’t you?

    8. Avatar photo anon says:

      It does though. Buy an Ivirne Welsh book if you can stomach reading that garbage.
      Also, I’m Irish, but go ahead and make assumptions and look foolish why not.

    9. Avatar photo slackshoe says:

      I’m from the same city as Irvine Welsh. “ken” doesn’t mean “can”. And if you’re Irish then there’s really no excuse for being that much of a halfwit.

    10. Avatar photo Oggy says:


      If you really are Irish, as you claim, then you’ll understand what I mean when I say that you’re the biggest langer on this site.

      An absolute pollution.

  17. Avatar photo James says:

    Anyone realising the release date..1 April! April Fuuels…

  18. Avatar photo ramzez says:

    I would be more happier with 250/250 upload tier then 1000/110 to be honest, like most said upload is much more important that download for content creators.

  19. Avatar photo New_Londoner says:

    A *lot* of comments in very little time! Admittedly a lot of repetition too.

    For those convinced that symmetrical gigabit plus services are the only way forward, you may wish to reflect on the relative lack of takeup currently experienced by most of the altnets that offer those speeds. Remember it is sufficiently bad that many have had their funding for further build paused by their backers until they can show decent sales volumes.

    The network operator with significant take up in both volume and percentage terms is of course Openreach, which ought to provide evidence of what the mass market currently requires. For those questioning why Openreach doesn’t offer symmetric broadband speeds, you should probably look to the ISPs selling services over its network. I’m pretty sure that Openreach would change its position if its own ISP customers were demanding such services.

    1. Avatar photo anonymous says:

      “Lack of take up” is many factors. Often people not even aware of it, mostly its down to an unknown brand whereas BT is a household name.

      BT are big enough to give choice even if symmetric was an optional extra charge like VM are doing on their NexFibre network of £6. Stop trying to make excuses for them. Companies of a smaller standing may go bankrupt because of many things (like expensive trenching, or too cheaper price) but not because of offering symmetric.

    2. Avatar photo anon says:

      Openreach and several ISPs called copper cables fibre.
      Most people have no idea what symmetric fibre is, because they think their FTTC *IS* fibre.
      That’s what Openreach, ASA and BT have done to the country. Perhaps, if people were aware of the benefits of symmetric connections then they’d have more take up?

    3. Avatar photo Phil L says:

      So true regarding people thinking they have Fibre already. I had FTTP on Demand installed enabling several neighbours to upgrade to faster and more reliable speeds, but when I mentioned it they all looked at me puzzled and said they had fibre already, and I couldn’t explain to them the differences, as they didn’t believe what I was saying when I said their current broadband was over copper. I gave up trying and still the only one connected years later.

    4. Avatar photo Ivor says:

      actually Virgin started the “copper is fibre now” stuff, long before BT had any VDSL out there. Not sure what we can post here but google will show news reports from 2008 in regards to ASA complaints.

      There’s a lot of “cope” going on when it comes to justifying symmetric speeds. Perhaps it really is just the case that people don’t want or need it in any significant scale?

    5. Avatar photo New_Londoner says:

      I guess most of us on here are too close to the technology and forget that we are not representative of the vast majority of customers. On my town’s Facebook page I regularly see people commenting about problems with their wifi service, with broadband rarely even getting a mention, ditto fibre. Most people seem to have very little knowledge about the technology, nor do they care about it, except when their wifi stops working.

      Yes content creators may well need, or will at least benefit from, symmetric gigabit services but there is no evidence that this is *required* by the mass market. To be clear, this doesn’t mean that *you* would not buy such services, just that the majority of people are not.

      Just ask some of the big ISPs that offer a choice of speeds what percentage of sales are for gigabit+ speeds versus those for 100Mbps or less. People are voting with their wallets and still seem to be opting for slower packages the majority of the time when given a choice.

    6. Avatar photo anonymous says:

      New_Londoner, you can’t support the new 1.2gbps and 1.8gbps tiers from BT then based on your response and must be wondering why BT offering them unless you can supply data to support that “mass market” wanted it then?

    7. Avatar photo New_Londoner says:

      Stating the obvious, the mass market not wanting or needing either symmetric services or gigabit+ speeds does not mean that there is no market for either, just that the majority of customers are not buying those options, at least not at the moment. Clearly there is some demand for both higher than gigabit speeds and symmetric services, with the new Openreach options being targeted at the former.

    8. Avatar photo anonymous says:

      So, are you saying that VM and Altnets making it up about symmetric services then given that is what most of this forum thread is about? It’s ok to champion BT for > 1gbps services that mass market proof does not exist while protecting BT over an increase in upload speed for which you also say mass market does not support. There is a contradiction in there.

    9. Avatar photo New_Londoner says:

      I’m not sure if you’re deliberately mis-reading my comments.

      For clarity, I have no problem with any company offering symmetric and/or gigabit+ services. I do however observe that the evidence is clear that the mass market is currently choosing to save money and buy slower services when presented with the option to do so, and does not appear to have a major requirement for symmetric services either.

      As before, this is not to deny that some people do indeed have a desire for symmetric services, others for gigabit+. Whether they actually need these options, prefer them or simply choose to spend their money that way is neither here nor there. They do however appear to be in the minority at the moment.

    10. Avatar photo Sonic says:

      @New_Londoner said:

      “For clarity, I have no problem with any company offering symmetric and/or gigabit+ services. I do however observe that the evidence is clear that the mass market is currently choosing to save money and buy slower services when presented with the option to do so, and does not appear to have a major requirement for symmetric services either.”

      Sure. The economy is not doing very well, so that is to be expected. But not everyone will be in that category. What @anonymous (and others like me) is asking for is the /choice/ to have faster/symmetric uploads for a reasonable extra charge.

      When a company like Openreach makes a decision like “a ratio of 18:1 is perfectly adequate” for /all/ of their customers (without exception), that is problematic.

    11. Avatar photo New_Londoner says:

      You really ought to be addressing your comments to the ISPs that sell services using the Openreach network as they are the voices that Openreach will listen to given they are its customers. I’ve not seen public statements from the various ISPs making the case for symmetric services and can only assume that they’re not pressing Openreach for these either.

      If BT/EE, Sky and others began pushing for symmetric services then I suspect we’d see a response from Openreach.

  20. Avatar photo anon says:

    There sure are a lot of experts on b
    Here today that know exactly what all customers want. And have dozens of “facts” yet no sources for any of them.

    1. Avatar photo Tyler says:

      Anon, this anonymous geezer seems to have a grudge with BT Group
      forgets BT looks after a very important infrastructure and security for this country
      Not just Tom dick and Harry on it.

    2. Avatar photo slackshoe says:

      BT looking after national security doesn’t fill me with confidence

    3. Avatar photo anonymous says:

      Tyler, if only you could dumb down everyone to fit within your agenda.

      The only grudge is BT deploying legacy stuff and trying to dictate to the country for years what we need – competition is here and even VM going forward cannot be accused of low upload speeds, they joined the party by offering CHOICE.

      Not a personal grudge or bad experience with them. It would be so easy for you to try and portray that though wouldn’t it. So, just spelling this out for you that you are wrong in your assumption or agenda.

      Also, were you were that “anonymous” isn’t just ONE person posting. There are several/many anonymous on this forum.

  21. Avatar photo XGS says:

    Here for the comments and they didn’t disappoint.

    1. Avatar photo occasionally factual says:

      Even funnier when the likes of Adrian(Zoooom but I really don’t want FTTP) insist this site is a BT fanboy site. This thread proves yet again he’s wrong.

  22. Avatar photo James says:

    Any whisperings of ISPs getting ready to launch products based on these tiers? And would they wait until April 1st for a launch or do some form of pre-launch? Of course I expect many ISPs to not be so ready and take months if not years to introduce them.

  23. Avatar photo Sam Perry says:

    If I read another comment saying 80Mbps is fast enough in 2024 I will slap you with a cold fish… it’s not and never has been since like 2016… DLC files are huge on my ps5. I have a 5G router just to download these because my 80 meg EE router is so slow. 3 hours to download GT5 yeah no thanks when I can do it in an hour on the 5G router…

    1. Avatar photo Slackshoe says:

      It’s the typical boomer mindset: I tolerated sub-par service, so you should too. Reminds me of my dad. Took 2 years to convince him that we should get ADSL in the early 2000s: “Use the phone and internet at the same time? What for, you don’t need to be online 24 hours a day.” And then wi-fi: “what for, we don’t all need to be online at the same time”. And then FTTC: “why, it’s fast enough for me” etc etc

    2. Avatar photo Age is a protected characteristic says:

      Gen Z teen in their bedroom say what?

  24. Avatar photo Mark says:

    I know everyone always want the fastest speeds available but isn’t it right that openreach concentrate their money and resources on upgrading those still stuck below 5mbps than upgrading those already on 800mbps?

    1. Avatar photo slackshoe says:

      They can kill both birds with the same stone.

    2. Avatar photo Sonic says:

      They aren’t doing that though? They are very busy chasing alt-nets right now, with lots of overbuilding going on. If they truly cared, they would start building FTTP in places that don’t have any, like the city I live in.

    3. Avatar photo Mark says:

      They are busy upgrading all the villages round here. FTTP became available for us this time last year. Thing is we are pretty close to the cabinet so get 70/18 on FTTC. They put up three new poles and a fibre block on our existing pole and so far there is one connection on one of the new poles.
      I WFH, stream 4K, 3 games consoles and still don’t feel the need to upgrade yet. One connection out of about 40 houses can’t be giving a good return.
      There’s no 5G or virgin round here either btw.

    4. Avatar photo New_Londoner says:

      “They are very busy chasing alt-nets right now”

      Whilst that seems to be a popular view amongst some on here, the reality is obviously different given the build rate and total coverage of Openreach exceeds that of the altnets. Clearly there is overbuild amongst all parties (Openreach of altnets, altnets of Openreach and each other etc) but this is to be expected given they are all targeting the most attractive areas for deployment.

    5. Avatar photo The witcher says:

      Money is a very persuasive reason to change, and once people start chasing cheaper out of contract prices they will gradually move over to FTTP

  25. Avatar photo Sam P says:

    At the end of the day you’re probably going to get a more reliable service with better customer service on the Openreach network than the alts

    1. Avatar photo David Stamp says:

      Not true.

      For instance I have personal experience of B4RN who provide excellent speed and technical response 100% of the time.

    2. Avatar photo Sam P says:

      I didn’t make a statistical fact.
      That’s why I used the word “probably”.

  26. Avatar photo Justin says:

    Well, hasn’t this been a lively debate?

    Who knew that introducing a new wholesale speed tier would be so controversial!

    1. Avatar photo Winston Smith says:

      Two wholesale tiers, one might have passed without incident.

  27. Avatar photo David Stamp says:

    Openreach are artificially strangling the upload speeds to far less than 200 Mbps because (a) they can, and (b) it gives them opportunity to make more money in future by gradually (eventually) launching new speed tiers for both download and upload. We all know that.

    That’s the main reason that the UK is still held back at almost ‘third world’ access speeds compared to most developed countries.

    If B4RN could give me symmetrical 1 Gbps UP and DOWN in 2017, why can’t Openreach offer better upload speeds now.

    Money, Money, Money holding back the UK yet again …. [Money = Greed]

    1. Avatar photo XGS says:

      So go with B4RN. Think you already have. Your money, money, money alongside millions of others will have them change their policies if it’s such an issue that lots of folks are leaving seeking symmetry 🙂

    2. Avatar photo The facts says:

      ‘ almost ‘third world’ access speeds’ Examples please. Would be interesting to know the takeup of higher speeds and the actual utilisation of them by users.

    3. Avatar photo anonymous says:

      Well, given your username is “The facts”, I would have thought you would have presented those facts here yourself to support demonstrating that you don’t think the take-up of higher speeds warrants BT doing anything. We should have stayed on ADSL or FTTC then surely?

    4. Avatar photo RightSaidFred says:

      “third world speeds”

      What century are you living in?

      The places that you refer to often don’t even have a basic broadband connection, yet 1Gbps is somehow at that level?

      10Gbps would be great, but other than downloading every book ever written in one day, what else might the regular Joe need of that much bandwidth?

    5. Avatar photo Alex says:

      “Third world” is such and antiquated and offensive term.

    6. Avatar photo Daffy says:


      That’s right. Why does the regular Joe need that much bandwidth? 10Mb is enough. Similarly 640kb RAM is more than enough memory for the vast majority of people. You can have a WordPerfect document and a Lotus 1-2-3 document open at the same time. Why would you need any more memory than this – how many programs are you planning to run simultaneously??

    7. Avatar photo Mack User says:


      Your kidding right?

      I’ll disregard your memory use assumptions as an joke, my desktop PC regularly uses more than 36 of its 64gb ram and even the GPU has 24gb.

      As for 10Mb being more than enough, perhaps for a single person using one or 2 devices, but in a household of 5 there’s no chance.
      We regularly use over 40Mb/s consistently in the evenings (of our 1gbps – 110Mb/s and weekends can see more if friends and family are around, TVs, laptops, tablets, consoles and phones and an average 200Gb of data a day.

  28. Avatar photo Gareth says:

    My problem with the sentiment that FTTC should be fine for most people is the service is dependant upon the line quality. Prior to leaving Sky the highest speed I could get on their “fibre” service was around 10Mbps down, 1Mbps up due to the green cabinet being miles away and the line being aluminium instead of copper (an Openreach engineer on Kitz was less than complementary about the state of the lines in my area).

    Openreach haven’t done anything since rolling out FTTC, which is surprising as the exchange serves around 10k premises. Nexfibre have finished their installation in this area and most people on this street have already ordered Virgin Media along with other people I know in the area. These people are in the 50-70 age range and it would seem they don’t feel the FTTC offerings are fine or represent value for money (so about 99.9% of the people I know if we’re talking about percentages).

    1. Avatar photo RightSaidFred says:

      This is where I think the Altnets and OR have missed the boat. Those of us that aren’t living on top of a cabinet, that do need a good internet connection, will take up whichever network gets to us as soon as it becomes available.

      Instead of targeting slightly higher cost to reach but guaranteed take up customers, they went for overbuilding low cost to reach locations with lower incentive for take up.

      This is exactly why rural focussed networks like B4RN have high take up rates.

  29. Avatar photo Yf says:

    Meh.. I get 1900 down and 1800 up on you fibre for £49pcm (2gb/2gb). Zen were charging me £55 for open reach based 900/120…

    1. Avatar photo Phil says:

      Yeah it true as every products from Openreach are very expensive! Nothing is cheaper!

      You are lucky to have 2Gbps/2Gbps for £49pm while I pay more than than for my current Openreach G.fast 272/34

  30. Avatar photo Phil says:

    I bet CEO of Openreach will read all these comments and will laughing it off ‘It’s Openreach, if you don’t want the service, go elsewhere!’.

  31. Avatar photo GreenLantern22 says:

    Just finished reading comments of the link above. So many deniers. So many “I don’t need more than XXX, you don’t need it either”. I would really want to meet all these not for me/no for you people. I would love to visit their houses and throw away all the stuff they don’t need because I can’t see any use for it or I don’t need. I can also make sure they are “not wasting their money” buying things they are never going to fully utilise. I will start by reducing the water presure and water flow, to maximise their water usage. Who needs all that water pressure and flow right? What a waste!!!

    Please contact me via this post and let me help you get the best out of your life, I am here to help!!!


  32. Avatar photo GreenLantern22 says:

    Forgot to say. Clearly no one needs multi gigabit speeds that’s why Openreach, the most innovative company in the world, has decided to start selling multi gigabit products.

    Now seriously why can’t the deniers just see that this is not for them? They haven’t got the brains to use it or the money/will to pay for it. So move along, nothing to see here.

    1. Avatar photo Martin says:

      I think its a case of need vs want. I don’t think anyone *needs* gigabit or faster, but many will benefit from it and many want to sign up for it. Openreach have simply found it makes commercial sense to offer a product that will make them more money

  33. Avatar photo Bob says:

    Sky seem to be trying to move people to Fibre

    There latest price increase see’s Superfast go up 13.5% but Full Fibre 100 only goes up 3.5%

  34. Avatar photo Bob says:

    The Openreach FTTH rollout is speeding up. In the month to 14th February they passed almost an additional 500,000 homes which given it is the middle of winter is impressive

    1. Avatar photo anonymous says:

      It is. If only they didn’t wait for competition before they did anything though. Could have been much further down the road.

      What’s not impressive is GPON still to this day whilst everyone else doing XGS-PON and no choice of symmetric services as a result.

  35. Avatar photo Dave M says:

    I stopped reading at 120Mbps upstream…

  36. Avatar photo milaniz says:

    120mbps even african countries do better nowadays than BT

    1. Avatar photo New_Londoner says:

      That’s odd because some of the most recent reports suggest fixed broadband penetration rates have only reached 16% of premises, with download speeds at 43Mbps. Some service providers offer gigabit services but the availability of FTTP is pretty limited.

      This is not a criticism of progress in Africa given the many challenges, but is definitely a challenge to any implied suggestion that 120Mbps download speeds are commonplace across the continent.

  37. Avatar photo brendon says:

    lmao. 1.8gbps up and 120up. who will actually upgrade from the present 900/115. makes no sense to just chase download instead of actually making it symmetrical.

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