back to article Openreach annual review: Eat fibre and be merry, we fixed the faults before you called

Openreach claims it is now more independent of BT than ever before, adding that the UK's fibre rollout is going just fine and all ISPs are now very happy with the BT-owned telecoms infrastructure company. This was the gist of its first annual review, issued to coincide with yet more central government pledges to extend …

  1. Dwarf Silver badge
    Pint

    It went on to congratulate itself for doing what many hardworking Reg readers do every day and "fixing faults before our [CP customers] even reported them to us".

    The unsung hero's of all companies, this reminds me of a Microsoft conference a number of years ago, where they observed

    When did you last get into a lift with someone from management and they said "Thanks, unnamed IT guy, I could print today"

    Beer because its Friday and the unsung hero's could probably do with a couple of these.

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    "The new universal service obligation means every UK household can request, by law, a 10Mbps broadband service from the end of 2020."

    But I don't think it requires one to be offered in return.

    And if they do, they don't have to offer it at a pre-determined install price, nor using a specific technology (e.g. they could sell you a 4G mobile phone with a 5GB/month download limit, and say "there you are")

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      It is even worse. All households can get fast internet in theory. The only issue is about who bears the cost. BT could say 'we are ready, pay us a fortune to lay the fibre'.

      FTTP has a bunch of options as standard and with the same network a bunch of options as FTTP 'On Demand' that costs a lot more.

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    How can they fix faults when they refuse to put in Fibre?

    Ofcom is talking about a 10 mbs as being the gold standard, and will do fuck all about anything

    1. Lorribot

      That's 10Mb down and fuck all up with a side salad of a shit load of latency on your piss poor aluminium cables.

      But hay in 2100 they may actually FTTP your house.

      Mate is in a new house in town served by Virgin and OR and gets 2Mb as Virgin wont cabel them up and OR won't or can't be bothered to fibre their cabinet. Estate has 170 houses, built 2 years ago so OR have had 3 years to get something sorted.

      Thats the reality.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        The developer should have engaged BT as they do fibre to the premise in new builds work over 30 houses provided the developer asks them to.

        1. SImon Hobson Silver badge
          FAIL

          as they do fibre to the premise in new builds work over 30 houses provided the developer asks them to

          I think you'll probably find that it should read "provided the developer pays them to". And developers are notoriously tight arsed about such things, putting in just the bare minimum they think they can get away with without actually having people turn round and say "I'm not buying a house with no running water connected" (to pick an example of something they can't get away with.)

          Certainly, the house my mother was looking at buying didn't have any ducting installed on the grounds of cost - the sole allowance for communications was a single phone socket next to the TV socket in the living roomshoebox with a foot of cable sticking through the wall so the BTOR guy would be able to run a washing line from the nearest pole and down the outside of the house to it. When I questioned it, it was down to cost.

          OK, only a development of 6 houses, but same applies.

          Icon says what I think of the lack of forward planning that doesn't mandate all new build to have (as far as is reasonably practical) facilities for 20th century communications - expecting allowance for 21st century communications is just wishful thinking.

          1. AndrueC Silver badge
            Stop

            I think you'll probably find that it should read "provided the developer pays them to"

            Actually no. For the last couple of years OR has been offering FTTP for the same price as copper on new builds above a certain number of houses. This is the original announcement I think. But it's now dropped to 30 homes or more.

            Anyone moving into a decent sized new build that doesn't have FTTP needs to shout at the developer.

            1. SImon Hobson Silver badge

              Actually no. For the last couple of years OR has been offering FTTP for the same price as copper on new builds above a certain number of houses. This is the original announcement I think. But it's now dropped to 30 homes or more.

              Wow, thanks for those links. Interesting to read the developer instructions for copper - the fibre one seems to be a broken link. Trouble is, the number of developers who really don't give a s**t about such stuff - and I bet the guy building the one my mum looked at was oblivious to the existence of it anyway based on his protracted bungling from one "I've just found out I have to ..." delay to another. The guide clearly says to provide internal cabling for both voice and data - many provide absolutely nothing at all because they are complete tightarses working on the "how cheap can we build this and still sell it" principle. Given the pent up demand, they can build s**t and people will still buy it as it's better than having no roof over your head.

              That's the sad reality - unless you are going custom build, or get in early enough to specify (and pay through the nose for) extras, or are going really upmarket then you'll get none of these 20th century "mod cons"essentials.

    2. Alan Brown Silver badge

      "How can they fix faults when they refuse to put in Fibre?"

      And in areas where there is no competition, they can still rape and pillage as they see fit.

      Why does a 10GB/s circuit cost 10 times as much as a 1Gb/s circuit?

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    By 2020?, that is far too soon for them to disrupt some pavements. A very long time ago some cable company now owned by VM trashed some pavements. The council, at great expense and less than a year ago totally relaid those pavements because they had clearly become a tripping hazard caused in the main by those extensive excavations and shoddy reinstatements many years ago, Now with the works completed there is a five year moratorium on disturbing the pavements,

    Meanwhile OR are allegedly providing FTTP to the area (almost everywhere else around is and has been FTTC for quite a while ) While they can lay fibre in in ducts, much of the copper is direct laid and from the tees EVERY property is direct laid. 18 months ago OR could have more or less dug up what they liked, with coordination they could have provided a fully ducted network to the boundary or beyond of every property with very low installation and reinstatement costs. But now and until at least 2023 or beyond fibre to the home will, here at least, remain a figment of someone's imagination.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      So the council didn't think about laying some ducts during the repairs, before imposing the 5-year moratorium?

  5. Luuta

    Not fixed our faults, ten years of hassle, the worst communication with a company ever, which is ironic, and exorbitant fees for fixing a service we've already paid for. Plus, it isn't fiber. It's copper, paper wrapped copper that was shorting our phone line and broadband. And 10mbs is pathetic, when a fiber to the door would offer much more. Let's not talk about the cost either.

    And I include BT in all this, because they're two halves of the same coin and differentiating them simply allows them to blame each other, obfuscate and put insurmountable obstacles in the way of their customers. Openreach are self congratulating, arrogant fools.

    1. Alan Brown Silver badge

      " I include BT in all this, because they're two halves of the same coin and differentiating them simply allows them to blame each other, obfuscate and put insurmountable obstacles in the way of their customers. "

      Exactly THIS.

      Ofcom needs to fuck off to doing its homework (technical regulatory matters) and let the Competition and Markets Authority regulate the actual market dominance and monopoly side of things.

      Incidentally this is what happened in New Zealand - the NZ version of Ofcom was hopelessly corrupted, claiming there was no problem and happy to accept Telecom NZ's version of Openreach/BT - for exactly the same reason as we see here - Ofcom execs go to/from cushy telco jobs and as such have a very personal conflict of interest preventing them from both acknowledging the extent of the problem or taking action to deal with it.

      It was the NZ Ministry of Commerce and Competition Commission that stepped in and forced a separation after noting the amount of damage that had been done to the country's economy by the incumbent telco's anticompetitive behaviour and use of control of access to the last mile network lines as a commercial weapon, along with creative accounting to justify high pricing whilst making it look like the network was a lossmaker (hint: It turned out to be wildly profitable once separated)

      BT won't let go of the outside plant because it's both a cash cow AND the best means possible to destroy the competition. No matter what smoke and mirrors are going on, unless the cpmpanies are entirely separated, Openreach is going to remain a glove puppet with BT's controlling fist firmly shoved up its arse.

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