So Much For a Leading Technology Country - The Last Mile Hassle
It is my submission the switchover problems are a failure of OFCOM to kick a*se.
Would you tolerate a day without water, electricity or gas is you chose to switch suppliers? So how come the telecoms industry can get away with it?
I live in a country with several country-wide cable, InterNet, landline and cell providers - some government-owned and others privately owned. They are co-operative competitors.
Somewhere, I have yet to discover where, there is a meeting point, a bloody great terminal box. maybe, could be a shared facility (building) and from these mysterious destinations (deliberately rated as a national security item) emanate cables, or drops, to individual business and residential premises.
The first building occupant pays about USD$50 to any service provider who, in turn, contracts it to a cable pulling cable company to install the fibre cable into the subscribing building. By the time a building, either single or multiple occupancy, is authorised for occupancy all utilities are up and running. I built a double apartment-over-a-commercial-space building (I think the Brits called them 'parades') and I had to tell NOT to come in until called.
One telephone call to MY choice of provider(s) resulted in a single modem being delivered (another USD$50) by courier and by the time I had plugged the thing in I had 100 Mbyte InterNet and, had I wished it, cable and telephone service. All within a day or two of my initial request.
In Canada the telco's, some many years ago, pulled in cables along every street in the cities and where streets intersected, the intersecting cables made 'appearances'. When service was ordered some Squaddie would start at the switching centre and streetbox by streetbox connect intersecting cables until dial tone appeared at the subscribers premises.
In my present country of residence the rural areas are served in a similar fashion. A cable emanates from a town or city and follows a highway, underground, and every time it passes through a village or hamlet 'appearances' emerge every 500 metres. In the event the trunk cables are overhead, the DSLAMs (digital subscriber line access multiplexers) are pole mounted!
Everything points to an abject failure by the UK regulator and BT in doing their work. Why is it so difficult for a new service to be connected to a drop by a technician, who is more than capable of disconnecting an existing service?