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Average speed now 10Mbps less than May this year. What could have caused this?

lorisarvendu
Grafter
Posts: 334
Registered: ‎26-08-2007

Average speed now 10Mbps less than May this year. What could have caused this?

From August 2013 my fibre speed has been consistent at about 50Mbps (ignoring the fact that it was consistently about 69Mbps before that).
Then in March this year something happened, and my speeds stabilised at about 62-65Mbps.  Marvellous! I thought. 
Now from June/July this year, my speeds have dropped once more and are again consistently about 55Mbps.
Anyone got any ideas what causes things like this?  Is it a fault?  The unseasonably hot weather?  If there is something amiss then I obviously ought to raise a ticket, because otherwise things will just keep ticking on as usual.  But on the other hand I really don't want to face what I've been through before, which is months and months of soul-destroying feedback from Support.  Each week a new person picks up the ticket and asks me the same old questions again and again. One week I talk to someone who agrees that it does look suspicious and there is certainly grounds for investigation, and then the next week the ticket gets closed for no particular reason...then opened again when I question it.
BT engineers come and go, each one saying that my line is within the range of acceptable speed, and yet none of them answering the simple question of what could cause a broadband speed to drop 10Mbps overnight and then stay there.  I mean, if I bought a car which was capable of 70mph, and then one day it wouldn't go above 60, I'd question it.  I'd assume that something strange had happened, and I'm sure no garage would just tell me that there was nothing that could be done because 60mph is well within the acceptable speed for driving on the road. 
The really annoying thing is that the figures now probably say that 50-55Mbps is the speed someone getting a fibre line in my area would expect, and that is always trotted out to me when I mention that my speed has dropped.  Yes, I say, but three years ago 60-65Mbps was the expected speed.  Why has the expected speed dropped?  The commonest answer to that is the new fibre customers will bring the speed down. Yes, I say, but why the sudden drop?  I could understand new customers causing the speeds to drop slowly and gradually over time, but suddenly almost overnight?  How does that work?  Do hundreds of new customers all decide to sign up for and start using their fibre broadband on the same day? 
Anyway, that's my situation.  What does anyone suggest?  And before anyone says are you using wireless, no, the whole house is wired with 1GBps Cat5.
I'd like to at least know the probable cause, because I can foresee a time two years hence when I'm staring at a 20Mbps speed test while being told by a support agent that 20Mbps is the expected line speed for my area.
- Dave (frustrated and getting too old for this ****)
A tortoise? What's that?
You know what a turtle is? Same thing.
19 REPLIES
englishrick
Grafter
Posts: 463
Registered: ‎14-02-2013

Re: Average speed now 10Mbps less than May this year. What could have caused this?

CROSSTALK so I have been told... its funny that everyone with this problem has lost about the same amount !!!!!!! its as if its a controlled amount being taken from us and not just some random amount... all in all a load of hogwash if you ask me.
Champnet
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Re: Average speed now 10Mbps less than May this year. What could have caused this?

Sad Wot he ^^^^^^^^^^ says  Sad
lorisarvendu
Grafter
Posts: 334
Registered: ‎26-08-2007

Re: Average speed now 10Mbps less than May this year. What could have caused this?

Yeah. Crosstalk. That magic word again.  But didn't BT do something a few months back to cut down on crosstalk?  About the time my speed increased by about 10Mbps?
I guess crosstalk is obviously something that sits around waiting, then pounces and causes your speed to drop very suddenly. 
A tortoise? What's that?
You know what a turtle is? Same thing.
sjrinfroyle
Grafter
Posts: 895
Registered: ‎08-05-2011

Re: Average speed now 10Mbps less than May this year. What could have caused this?

G.INP seems to be reducing the effects of crosstalk somewhat.
The real solution is vectoring which is currently being trialled. Although I understand only Huawei cabinets will benefit in the near future as ECIs lack the suitable firmware in their DSLAMs.
Terranova667
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Re: Average speed now 10Mbps less than May this year. What could have caused this?

G.INP doesn't do anything for crosstalk it's for noise / electrical interference from out side / inside sources on the line,  Crosstalk can only be dealt with with Vectoring and it's not just Huawei cabs ECI can very much do Vectoring but cabs may require physical updating depending on the line cards used, it's G.INP where ECI has a real issue with not being able to handle G.INP on the upload at all.
 
Andrue
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Re: Average speed now 10Mbps less than May this year. What could have caused this?

Le sigh.
Quote from: lorisarvendu
I guess crosstalk is obviously something that sits around waiting, then pounces and causes your speed to drop very suddenly.  

Quote from: englishrick
CROSSTALK .. all in all a load of hogwash if you ask me.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crosstalk
If you're the first one to use the service on your cabinet then cross talk will be non-existent. As time goes on more and more people take up FTTC and the chance of you being impacted (and the extent to which it affects your service) increase. And yes, you might be lucky for a while then all of a sudden a new subscriber comes on stream whose cable badly influences yours (and vice versa). As another poster has said there is something called 'Vectoring' which has been in development for a long time now that BT are considering rolling out at some point. Although last I heard they've backed away from a national roll-out and may only use it on cabinets where XT is a big problem and/or would extend the reach for a significant number of subscribers.
There's nothing magical about XT. Electronics engineers have been fighting it pretty much since electricity was tamed back in the 19th century. Getting sarcastic and snippy with the laws of physics isn't going to impress anyone.
sjrinfroyle
Grafter
Posts: 895
Registered: ‎08-05-2011

Re: Average speed now 10Mbps less than May this year. What could have caused this?

Quote from: Terranova667
G.INP doesn't do anything for crosstalk it's for noise / electrical interference from out side / inside sources on the line,  Crosstalk can only be dealt with with Vectoring and it's not just Huawei cabs ECI can very much do Vectoring but cabs may require physical updating depending on the line cards used, it's G.INP where ECI has a real issue with not being able to handle G.INP on the upload at all.
 

If an adjacent pair is putting noise onto your pair, G.INP will reduce the effects of it. If that noise is crosstalk then yes it will reduce the effects of that noise slightly.
Vectoring is obviously far more effective as it is aimed directly at crosstalk but G.INP will reduce it slightly, in my experience.

Edit: I'm wrong. Ignore.
MattyC
Champion
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Registered: ‎10-04-2014

Re: Average speed now 10Mbps less than May this year. What could have caused this?

G.INP shouldn't really have any impact on crosstalk. It's only vectoring that'll improve that, should it be rolled out. Terra's right there.
It's likely that Dave's line is unfortunately affected by this.
ex-Plusnet staffer. Any posts after 28/07/2017 aren't on behalf of Plusnet
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lorisarvendu
Grafter
Posts: 334
Registered: ‎26-08-2007

Re: Average speed now 10Mbps less than May this year. What could have caused this?

I guess that one of the things that annoys me is that when I first moved over to fibre I was on  the 38Mbps service (because that was all that existed).  
When the 80Mbps service became available (now tellingly re-badged as "66Mbps"), I upgraded to that.  Now, a few years down the line my 80Mbps service is only 15Mbps faster than the 38Mbps I was originally on, which (checking PN's main site) I can get now for £14.99 a month, as opposed to the £19.99 I currently pay.
If this drops any further I will actually be paying £5 a month more than someone on the 38Mbs package.  I wonder if PN would then consider allowing me (and customers in a similar situation) to downgrade?  I presume customers on 38Mbps are not experiencing the same 10Mbps loss?
This isn't a PN-knocking comment by the way, as this issue could obviously affect all UK BB customers regardless of ISP.  I wouldn't consider leaving PN as for what faults of theirs I have encountered (they tend to leave efficiency by the wayside in some cases) there are probably few ISPs better, and I'm sure a whole lot worse.
A tortoise? What's that?
You know what a turtle is? Same thing.
Stoker
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Registered: ‎12-08-2012

Re: Average speed now 10Mbps less than May this year. What could have caused this?

I downgraded from 80/20 to 40/10 (saving £5 a month) when the latter became uncapped as I'll never get more than 25-30mbps downstream.  I just opened a ticket and asked to switch.
The problem now is that  you would probably have to go on to 40/2.
lorisarvendu
Grafter
Posts: 334
Registered: ‎26-08-2007

Re: Average speed now 10Mbps less than May this year. What could have caused this?

It looks like I'd be lucky to get 40/2 now, since my speed has now dropped to less than 10Mbps downstream  while remaining at 17Mbps upstream.  Is something kicking off?
A tortoise? What's that?
You know what a turtle is? Same thing.
Champnet
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Re: Average speed now 10Mbps less than May this year. What could have caused this?

I'm amazed that BT hadn't the foresight to predict what could happen should customers subscribe to their services.............
DM
Andrue
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Re: Average speed now 10Mbps less than May this year. What could have caused this?

Quote from: Champnet
I'm amazed that BT hadn't the foresight to predict what could happen

They did. That's why they ran Vectoring trials.
They didn't roll-out vectoring as part of the main roll-out because they weren't sure how well it would work. The increased cost would have delayed the roll-out and perhaps reduced the final footprint. They presumably felt that 'something for 95% by 2015' was better than 'the best possible for 80% by 2020' - or something along those lines.
As far as the vectoring trial is concerned unfortunately (though taking the longer term view I'd say 'fortunately') they seem to have concluded that the cost and time scales of rolling out vectoring just aren't worth it. Instead they are moving to G.FAST (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/G.fast) which is basically the same principal as FTTC but pushing the fibre even closer to our properties. Personally I still think that G.FAST is too small a step and would have thought that going straight to FTTP would be better but I've been assured by several people in the know that G.FAST is a sensible compromise for now.
And that's the thing. It's all very well us online pundits making sweeping statements about the best way to upgrade a national telephone network but the truth is almost none of us (with the possible exception of the infamous AndyH and the lovely Kitz) have any experience of doing that in the real world conditions. Tacking some Cat6 around your skirting boards does not qualify anyone to criticise BT openreach  Wink
Terranova667
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Re: Average speed now 10Mbps less than May this year. What could have caused this?

Vectoring is Mandatory for Gfast it doesn't work without it so Openreach would have to roll Vectoring out at some point either before or at the same time as Gfast.