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back to article BT blows fibre into 'multiple biz units' for first time

BT's biz wing has completed what it claimed to be the first fibre-to-the-premises (FTTP) install to multiple buildings in the UK. The national telco said it had blown fibre optics into Acorn House's office units in Milton Keynes. BT said its FTTP broadband service can deliver download speeds of "up to" 100Mbit/s and upload …

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FAIL

It'd be nice...

....if FTTP was ever an option for those of us who want it.

It's a shame, really.

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HMB
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15 Mbps Up

What, so with the upgrade to 76 / 19 Mbps for FTTC, FTTP customers have to have an artificial limit of 15 Mbps on their upload?

I'd be sore about that.

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Ru

"We are at the forefront of the fibre revolution..."

Isn't it nice to be able to stand upon the shoulders of giants reap the rewards of being a former state monopoly handed a vast amount of infrastructure on a plate.

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FAIL

Re: "We are at the forefront of the fibre revolution..."

"... in the UK"

It's a good job they added that qualifier, because it looks pretty f'in' weak compared to many other countries.

Also, just because an area has FTTC, doesn't mean that they quickly roll it out to all the cabs - ours still hasn't got it 6 months since the exchange was done and I also noticed that you can't get FTTC if you live very close to the exchange and have a line which doesn't go via a street cabinet, which I expect would be a bit of a kick in the teeth

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Anonymous Coward

Re: "We are at the forefront of the fibre revolution..."

I'd be fascinated to know what infrastructure from the privatisation 30 years ago is used in the delivery of these FTTP services. Analogue microwave radio? X.25 PADs? An electromechanical telephone exchange? A Bedford van? One of those stripy red and white tents?

Regardless, the company and it's assets was sold to shareholders - no-one was handed anything. Lots of people bought shares in the company, lots of people paid less tax because the money raised was used to keep income tax bills down.

I think the real reason that there's only one other serious infrastructure player (and then only through buying assets in fire sales and not actually repaying any of their debt yet) is because it's expensive to roll out and at the same time the price consumers are prepared to pay is falling whilst their expectations are increasing. Anyone could go out and lay some duct, install some kit, blow some fibre - but they won't see a return for seven or eight years and if prices continue to fall, maybe never. Only companies with the scale and mindset of a utility are prepared to play in that kind of market and even then they'll pick the locations with the most customers per mile of investment.

Empirically, this is true. If it was easy to do, people would have done it and made money. A few organisations other than BT/Virgin have tried, to my knowledge none have made a profit and even the not-for-profit community co-ops are struggling to make the numbers work.

There's a market and an opportunity for new entrants in the broadband market - but it has to be a different technology to blowing fibre into every single property. It costs too much for the price customers will pay.

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Megaphone

FTTC would be nice.

Exchange enabled for FTTC for 18 months but the cabinets on our industrial estate are yet to be enabled. There's a new beast cabinet 50m down the road (towards to the exchange) where there's a few residential properties but nothing for us yet. I was hoping they might have omitted us deliberately with a plan to offer FTTP on the industrial estate but if this is only the first multiple roll-out then I don't think we'll be seeing anything for a while.

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How does this differ from their other fibre products?

How does FTTP differ from any other BT product involving fibre installed to the premises (such as WES/BES), other than it's presumably a bit cheaper?

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Anonymous Coward

Re: How does this differ from their other fibre products?

A lot cheaper I would think. Business grade broadband rather than VPN or private circuit services. I buy 100Mbps Ethernet FTTP services now in the UK and Europe but I pay hundreds, sometimes thousands, of pounds a month per connection, not £50.

I still will - because I can't run my service without zero packet loss, guaranteed RTD and jitter and a promise to fix it within 4 hours if it fails.

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fttc here... but wait

I currently have 70 odd down and 14 up..... on fttc?

Why would I want fttp then? Surely fttc cheaper and not much different in speed.

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FTTP only for residential

It appears to me that any FTTC is being supplied to residential as a priority, and business use is quite evidently not catered for, as evidenced by the lack of cabinets in business areas.

Presumably FTTP will be the same.

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this async thing is not the way to go

BT are fixated on Async and look at the world like a telephone company not a data network company.

A data network should not decide for users what they use it for. The point of having fibre is to connect and communicate. If I video conference and take wifi for LTE/3G users I need connectivity that works both ways in the same way otherwise everybody affected gets poor performance.

This idea that broadband should be Asynchronous for consumers is completely wrong. It might suit BT's telephone model as it creates dependencies on the network provider that need not otherwise exist but it does not suit data network users.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: this async thing is not the way to go

You mean Asymmetric not Asynchronous.

Only broadband is Asymmetric - business data products tend to be symmetric. It's much harder to achieve though, certainly with copper - and so the cost of the service is much higher. I buy Ethernet services across the UK and Europe for my products - some on copper, some on fibre - I don't much care as long as it works - but the point is that 50Mbps costs me anywhere from £600 to £2000 a month, sometimes more.

FTTP private services have been around for years, from BT and France Telecom and Deutsche Telecom and Telecom Italia and KPN and all the other providers - but not at a rate that the average consumer would want to pay for. I had 4x2Mbps delivered on fibre to a site in the early 90's. This isn't a technology problem, it's a cost one.

If you're a 'data network user' as opposed to a consumer Internet user, why are you using consumer products?

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