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Moving to full fibre with no mobile signal

Corazones
Hooked
Posts: 5
Registered: ‎28-10-2022

Moving to full fibre with no mobile signal

When I needed to renew my Plusnet contract nearly a year ago, I knew that our remote hamlet was due to have fibre laid on - but not knowing exactly when. So I asked Plusnet what to do, and they suggested I could confidently renew my ADSL broadband as they could transfer to suitable fibre service through them when the time came, and waive all cancellation charges, which I did. Full fibre to my home is now available, with an Open Reach community voucher covering the cost. My contract with Plusnet had 14 months still to run.

I informed Plusnet and they said they could transfer me to their own full fibre scheme, but as soon as the full terms arrived I was horrified to read "if you have a home telephone number, you will lose it as part of your order. Use a mobile for emergency calls. You see, we do not have a reliable mobile signal at home; we and five neighbours have tried all networks without success. And - as if to rub the problem home - I recently had to call an ambulance when I broke my pelvis in a fall in my bathroom, and the 999 operator called me back every 15 minutes (on my landline, of course)  during the two-hour wait for help to arrive, to check my condition and reassure me. I only returned from hospital.just over a week ago.

I explained the problem to Plusnet and they offered to transfer me to a BT 74 service instead which did include a connection for my home number. The BT router or "Hub" looks identical to Plusnet's but has an additional operational phone socket for a phone (which is supplied). However the highly increased monthly cost of £38.99 (plus £20 installation, which BT normally offer free) seemed rather high. I asked Plusnet to email full details of the deal to me but this consisted only of the price. This was contained within a raised "Question" which I answered in great detail to explain my position, but I heard nothing back; so now I don't know what is going on. Meanwhile the original Plusnet hub had arrived and an appointment made for their own engineer fixed for 9th November. 

I would love to return Plusnet's unwanted router unopened, if only to confirm its cancellation, but don't have an address or return label. Can anyone advise me please on what I should do? All I want is to hold fire for now and not feel under pressure for a few days, until I've had a chance to look into the BT offer and maybe some of the other five service providers who are willing to credit early disconnection charges.

12 REPLIES 12
bmc
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Registered: ‎28-02-2017

Re: Moving to full fibre with no mobile signal

@Corazones 

The first question to be asked is - is your phone number important or do you just want a phone service.

 

If the former, you need to move ISP though it is possible to sign up as a new PN customer, select keep your phone number and then port the number out to a VOIP operator as soon as the FTTP is up and running. If you get PN to agree to this they have been known to waive cancellation charges on the ADSL account. The downside is you lose PN e-mail and any other addons (which go anyway if you change ISP).

 

If the latter then VOIP is the answer - which is what the BT Digital Voice service is.

 

Some mobile phones work with WiFi calling - you use the internet connection.

 

The downside is FTTP doesn't work during a power cut.

 

Brian

ScottyKernow
Rising Star
Posts: 56
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Registered: ‎05-06-2022

Re: Moving to full fibre with no mobile signal

As an aside

Brother in law has a battery back up router

He reckons this will work regardless of mains power

bgiles
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Posts: 58
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Registered: ‎23-09-2007

Re: Moving to full fibre with no mobile signal

An UPS (Uninterruptible Power Supply) is indeed a solution to keep a VoIP line alive, but it will have to supply power to both Router and Optical Network Termination (ONT) once on FTTP.

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DrayTek Vigor2762 VoIP Router
markhawkin
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Re: Moving to full fibre with no mobile signal

@Corazones 

One other observation, if you go down the VoIP route for the phone line you can have a VoIP app on your mobile phone and answer your "landline" anywhere.

The tricky bits about this are:

1) Assuming you raise a new order for FTTP then your plusnet email (which you may or may not use) and phone number are left with the old account and would cease when you end that (perhaps to port your landline number to VoIP). This probably would result in a contract termination charge depending on how long you have left (from the original message it sounds like you had a 2 year contract and have had it for 10 months).

2) As you have identified, migration to fibre loses the landline number with no hope of retaining the number. You could get a new VoIP landline number but that is annoying as you need to tell everyone who has the number a new one.

Financially (and somewhat annoyingly) you may be best to sit out the remaining 14 months of your Plusnet contract and then going down the new install (by any provider) and port the landline to VoIP (thus ceasing the copper line and retaining your landline number).

It is no consolation but I don't think the form of the Plusnet FTTP offer was known when you recontracted so at that stage all that Plusnet were offering was what you now have available (a move to BT and waiving the remaining contract term). 

 I have a similar dilemma coming as I've seen the first stirrings of Openreach FTTP installation in my area and I would like to retain my landline and have FTTP. I'm going to be very careful at the end of my contract term.

 

I am the satisfied customer....
bmc
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Registered: ‎28-02-2017

Re: Moving to full fibre with no mobile signal

@markhawkin 

PN have been known (as I understand things) to waive early termination charges if you set up a new account for FTTP so you can then port your number out thereby cancelling your original account. You would be liable for two monthly charges while the second account is still running.

 

You would need to get PN approval in advance for such a course of action and you can't port your number until FTTP is up and running.

 

Brian

Corazones
Hooked
Posts: 5
Registered: ‎28-10-2022

Re: Moving to full fibre with no mobile signal

Thanks Brian, and my apologies for the delay in replying - recently out of hospital and busy catching up!

All I need is a line; retaining my number would be a nice bonus. There's a mobile signal only a couple of hundred metres away, but that's no help if you're flat on your back as I was - so annoying!

This didn't seem possible with PN so I have returned the router and am back to the existing service.

The only good point is that I've found five Fibre ISPs who will credit any cancellation fee, but it's so difficult to get a comparative price out of them without going through the tedious online assistant route! 

Alec.

Corazones
Hooked
Posts: 5
Registered: ‎28-10-2022

Re: Moving to full fibre with no mobile signal

Thanks Mark,

Interesting to hear you'll be in a similar position soon, in as far as you will be subject to a similar OpenReach voucher scheme. Do remember that, when you finally sign up to this, you're firmly committed - so now is a good time to be looking into your options.

Don't be too worried if you have some remaining commitment to your existing supplier and may wish to change, a few ISPs will credit you for this balance once you've paid it. It limits your choice through. I'm now in that situation, although comparing different offerings is not as straightforward as it seems. Most people in our Open Reach scheme seem to be keeping the same provider.

Other people have mentioned the VOIP mobile offer - but remember there is no mobile signal here.

Regards,

Alec.

Corazones
Hooked
Posts: 5
Registered: ‎28-10-2022

Re: Moving to full fibre with no mobile signal

Thanks, Mark,

That option was never mentioned in my discussions with PN. The only option suggested was the switch to BT but at their terms. Maybe I'll raise a question about that with PN.

Alec.

bmc
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Registered: ‎28-02-2017

Re: Moving to full fibre with no mobile signal

@Corazones 

At some point in the next 3 or 4 years the PSTN service will be withdrawn and everyone will be on VOIP of some sort.

 

To keep your number you either need to move or sign up as a new customer with PN and then port your number out afterwards. PN have beeen known to waive termination charges on your current account if you stay with them on a new account.

 

If the number is not that important then any ISP offering FTTP is worth consideration and then a VOIP account on top (which can be set up anytime - even before you get FTTP installed).

 

Mobile WiFi appears to be worth a look once on FTTP if your current mobile provider doesn't support it.

 

Brian

Corazones
Hooked
Posts: 5
Registered: ‎28-10-2022

Re: Moving to full fibre with no mobile signal

Thank you Brian, that's very helpful.

I'm sorry but I don't understand the meaning of "porting" a number out.

Also, most VOIP services being promoted are for multi-user office use - obviously the most profitable type to advertise. Can you suggest one that specialises in single users at low cost?

Alec.

bgiles
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Registered: ‎23-09-2007

Re: Moving to full fibre with no mobile signal

Hi Corazones

'Porting' means transferring a phone number to another provider, just as you can do with mobile numbers.

However, currently porting an analogue phone number associated with a landline usually results in the termination of any ADSL or VDSL (FTTC) service associated with that number, hence the challenges in doing so.

There is an extensive discussion about the challenges in this thread.

Plusnet SoGEA
DrayTek Vigor2762 VoIP Router
bmc
Hero
Posts: 3,137
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Registered: ‎28-02-2017

Re: Moving to full fibre with no mobile signal

@Corazones 

I have no experience of VOIP so can only comment from what I've learned on this forum. It's probably well worth reading the thread linked from the post by @bgiles 

 

As stated "porting" is moving your number from one provider to another. The process is led by the "gaining" company - you do not mention it to your current supplier.

 

Many ISP's will offer VOIP as part of their FTTC / FTTP offerings. However, the way things are going splitting your VOIP service from your Internet service seems to be a reasonably sound idea. It gives you choices in the future as to who provides what.

 

Until recently Sipgate seemed to be the goto company for VOIP - they offered a free account. However that's now history and I believe their basic monthly offering is around £10pm. A poster on another thread stated they had gone with Andrew & Arnold for their VOIP service and seemed happy with it once they'd got the account set up - something to do with having to open a second web page to set up payments before returning to the first to complete the order.

 

Their home package appears to be pretty much PAYG. It's £15 to port your current number and £1.20pm for the account.

https://www.aa.net.uk/voice-and-mobile/voip-information/

https://www.aa.net.uk/voice-and-mobile/voip-information/use-cases/home-user/

 

Two main things to consider with VOIP.

Will your current phone work with the router of your chosen ISP. Shouldn't be a problem if you go down the route of internet & VOIP from the same company. You might need an ATA (Analogue Telephone Adapter) which plugs into a router.

Second, VOIP only works with power. If your location suffers from power cuts then a back up power supply would be needed but these would only last for a short period - a few hours at best.

 

Brian