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FTTC Availability

snowwolf
Dabbler
Posts: 14
Registered: 22-03-2009

FTTC Availability

Hi
I've been looking at whether my exchange has been upgraded to support FTTC, and going through the checker (https://www.btwholesale.com/pages/static/Community/Broadband_Community/Coverage/ADSL_Availibility_Checker.html) and entering my phone number it says "Your cabinet is planned to have WBC FTTC by 31st March 2012. Our test also indicates that your line currently supports a fibre technology with an estimated WBC FTTC Broadband where consumers have received downstream line speed of 40Mbps and upstream line speed of 15Mbps."
However, looking at openreach (http://www.superfast-openreach.co.uk/where-and-when/) it says my exchange is Accepting Orders and samknows says "FTTC status: Available in some areas". So given the checker says by 31st March that implies that it may be earlier.
So my question is: Is the checker the definitive answer or is there another way to find out if I can upgrade to FTTC now?
Thanks
5 REPLIES
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 17,218
Thanks: 889
Fixes: 101
Registered: 11-01-2008

Re: FTTC Availability

I had an email from PN when my exchange was upgraded stating that it was available for my number. Not all cabinets are or can be upgraded on an exchange, my in-laws on the same exchange can't get it - whether or not they can in the long run remains to be seen..
The checker you used is most accurate, samknows only publishes what info it has.
Will Moderate For Thanks
Picnic
Grafter
Posts: 186
Thanks: 1
Registered: 30-10-2007

Re: FTTC Availability

It is just me? I find the statement
"Your cabinet is planned to have WBC FTTC by 31st March 2012. Our test also indicates that your line currently supports a fibre technology with an estimated WBC FTTC Broadband where consumers have received downstream line speed of 40Mbps and upstream line speed of 15Mbps."
very confusing. It states  "your line currently supports a fibre technology" but previously said the cabinet in planned to be upgraded. How can both be true unless there is some other fibre technology available on the line? If they said 'expected to support', 'should support' etc then fair enough but they don't.
Community Veteran
Posts: 1,411
Thanks: 4
Registered: 29-01-2009

Re: FTTC Availability

The wording in the response from the checker is very confusing, but rest assured: The fact the paragraph exists at all means you are due to get FTTC, with those estimated speeds. The fact that the first "prefix" sentence exists means that the service isn't yet available.
That checker is indeed the one that gives the most definitive statement of availability for your phone line, provided that you give it your phone number. The address checker is said to be reasonably accurate, but the postcode checker usually neglects to put in the date information.
The information about your exchange as a whole might be correct - but getting FTTC to work needs both the exchange *and* the cabinet to be converted; it is possible for either part to be the hold-up - but in your case it looks to be the cabinet. Interestingly, when my exchange went live, it got the "Accepting orders" status in November, but I didn't find *any* numbers where the order would be accepted until a month later.
The samknows information about FTTC used to be hopelessly out of date. Now it might be reasonably up-to-date, but not worth looking at. Stick to the BT checker.
Two things for you to note from the BT checker...
1) It gives the raw speed estimates (which might go up this weekend, as BT roll-out some changes), but you might be limited by the package you buy. For example, the current Plusnet packages limit downstream to 40 and upstream to 2 - and those caps will apply even if the checker returns higher numbers.
2) A date estimate at the end of March (or end of June, September or December) is one of BT's standard "placeholder" target dates. The bad news is that it needs to change into a different, real, date to be considered to have any certainty about it. If it gets close to mid-March and the date hasn't changed to a 'real' date, then you should expect it to be swapped to the next "placeholder" date - ie end-June. The good news is that, when it does go live and get a 'real' date, it will usually change to a date within the following 2 weeks.
So try not to get too attached to the "31st March" date, and then try not to get too disappointed if it changes to "30th June".
Unfortunately, you are stuck in a wasteland of information - and that checker is pretty much the best source of information, and that advice is the best way to interpret the checker.
But... with those estimates, you must live next door to the cabinet. The next best idea is to watch for work on the cabinets, and then ask the BT engineer or contractor!
Plusnet Customer
Using FTTC since 2011. Currently on 80/20 Unlimited Fibre Extra.
snowwolf
Dabbler
Posts: 14
Registered: 22-03-2009

Re: FTTC Availability

Thanks all for the detailed replies. I guess I continue waiting. Here's hoping the March date doesn't shift again - it was once June 2011. Hopefully the fact that the exchange is Accepting Orders means it's not too far away now.
unbound
Dabbler
Posts: 13
Registered: 10-01-2009

Re: FTTC Availability

Quote from: snowwolf
Here's hoping the March date doesn't shift again - it was once June 2011.

Mine started at June 2010, and slowly moved to December 2011 - Then two weeks before Christmas went to March 2012, then disappeared (two days later), reappeared a week later as available - So I got it fitted 2nd week Jan Smiley
Hopefully for you it won't move again - I think for the cabinets in Farnborough I was on one of the last two (and there are about 100 from what I gather) to be enabled.