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BT map reveals fibre broadband locations

BT Broadband map

By Stewart Mitchell

Posted on 8 Dec 2011 at 12:04

BT has created a map showing which exchanges are in line to be enabled for its fibre-to-the-cabinet Infinity broadband.

The fibre broadband availability checker lets you enter a postcode to see the status of exchanges near your home on a map, showing whether an exchange has fibre or when it is expected to get it, if at all.

However, rival fibre providers were critical of the late launch of the checker, and said it would be better if it showed more detailed data.

Trefor Davies, chief technology officer of fibre company Timico, noted in a company blog that "it doesn’t go into the detail by cabinet”.

Without information about local cabinets, the checker could prove frustrating for would-be subscribers because BT has acknowledged that not all street-level cabinets will be enabled, even if the exchange they are connected to does have fibre.

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User comments

Not that surprised but none of the exchanges in ~ a 50 mile radius away from us are planned to be upgraded to fibre at this stage. I might try searching further out, see how far away we have to go before one is.

By skarlock on 8 Dec 2011

Ok have checked. The nearest 'Future Exchange' that doesn't yet have a date for fibre on the BT map is 75.3 miles away from us.

The closest exchange currently 'Accepting Orders' to us is 105.7 miles away.

Anyone fancy giving me odds of fibre locally (at any exchange within 10 miles) by 2020?

By skarlock on 8 Dec 2011

Maps wealth with enable exchanges

Looking at the map I see exchanges in wealthy areas get preference. Yet another benefit for the rich.

By M_Hamer on 8 Dec 2011

@M_Hamer

Not at all, I live in the country in a not at all wealthy area (trust me!) 3 exchanges with 10 miles are accepting orders and i'm on the future update list.

By JStairmand on 8 Dec 2011

Seems fairly pointless. My Exchange has had fibre capability for months, but I can't get it even with a FTTC box outside my house. Box was installed in January 2011, availability is currently estimated as 31st Dec (but has previously been shown as june 2011 and Sept 2011).

By d_marchant on 8 Dec 2011

My area is estimated as somewhere near the end of next year. Already have VM cable.

No cable currently where mum & dad live and no plans to introduce it.

Handy.

By malfranks2 on 8 Dec 2011

We are moving

A couple of years ago we moved house and the service and speed from BT has been sh*te -25. Only changing to Zen as a provider has make it bearable.

We are moving back to an area covered by Virgin. I work from home and a fast line is important.

We are actually going to an area covered by BT fibre roll out. On the basis of my experience in the last couple of years. No thanks.

By kaneclem on 8 Dec 2011

Another reason to complaint to Ofcom now!

BT's communication on this is an absolute scandal! Checking on this map my local exchange, Shoreditch, London is marked as available and the key says I can definitely get it by contacting a "communications provider". Yet when I try to order it from BT Infinity, it is not available and they cannot tell me when it will be.
I assume this is because the local fibre to the kerb is not yet laid. So why are BT encouraging us to think this is a per-exchange thing?
-
This makes me REALLY SUSPICIOUS about BT's claims about the proportion of the country served! Are they counting premises as soon as the exchange serving it is fibre capable regardless of whether the access infrastructure is done?
-
Why cannot they do a proper map of availability at postcode level? They must have this information because they know whether it is available when you try to order!
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Why cannot communications providers behave in a professional way in this damn country?

By JohnAHind on 8 Dec 2011

In fact, BT is outright lying!

Checking again for Shoreditch it actually says "Accepting Orders: Contact a communications provider to get superfast fibre broadband" So that is a complaint to ASA as well - it is an outright violation of the trades descriptions act!

By JohnAHind on 8 Dec 2011

No BT in Ashford (Middx)

I know that they laid fibre down my street (I watched them) and the Ashford exchange is on the list. Click the link to buy now from BT (my current provider) and it's shown as not available.

By pastit on 8 Dec 2011

As an ex BT Engineer

I know looking in from the outside it seems like BT are dragging their feet a bit. But having been involved with their fibre installations for a long time I must say the pace is actually pretty good.

There are alot of problems, working out and soloutions to find to get this up and running. It's REALLY not as easy as you would think.

By JStairmand on 9 Dec 2011

@JStairmand

Personally I think I have a very good appreciation of how difficult it is (economically as well as technically) to roll out fibre broadband. My problem is with BT's constant over-marketing and over-claiming of progress. You simply cannot make categorical promises like "Accepting Orders: Contact a communications provider to get superfast fibre broadband" knowing that you cannot deliver to many, even most, of the people that message is directed at!
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BT's TV advertising creates the impression that the fibre service is available now to at least the vast majority of the people in the targeted TV areas, which simply is not the case and possibly never will be. A cynic would suggest that BT Infinity is hoping that a lot of people will switch to them thinking they are getting fibre and fail to notice they've actually signed on for the bog-standard ADSL service!

By JohnAHind on 9 Dec 2011

@JStairmand

I agree with JohnAHind. It is not about how fast BT is moving it’s about their lack of transparency. Also just because an exchange is enabled there is still no information about when the cabinets will be enabled. People see that their exchange has been done and then are left waiting to find out about their individual cabinet.

By scgill on 9 Dec 2011

Please could PCPro ask BT ...

When they claim they will have "superfast fibre broadband" available to 2/3rds of the UK by 2014, do they mean:
a) the exchanges serving 2/3rds of the phone lines will have fibre capability; or
b) 2/3rds of the phone lines will have the capability to be switched over to fibre on customer demand?
If (as you have previously reported) they are only implementing access fibre for an average of 60% of the lines on enabled exchanges, they are never going to achieve the claim by measure (b) even if they enable 100% of the exchanges!
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I have lodged a formal complaint about this map with the ASA on the grounds that it is untrue (it claims I can get fibre broadband today, which I cannot) and also that it is dishonest (it is designed to give a much better impression of the extent of BT's fibre rollout than is actually the case).

By JohnAHind on 9 Dec 2011

@scgill

Couldn't agree more.

My exchange was 'enabled' over a year ago but our local cabinet has been there, un-upgraded (I know, not a real word :)) since then.

I truly believe that our cabinet will likely be left as is for the next several years.

By jontym123 on 9 Dec 2011

No current plans?

Is it possible to find out why some Exchanges have "no current plans"?
Gatley MRGAT and Poynton have no current plans, and yet slap bang in the middle of major suburbs of South Manchester...
It can't be market demand that's for sure... And the residents attached to those exchanges sure have the money to pay for FTTC...

How very frustrating...

By gingerinc on 12 Dec 2011

My daughter lives 100mts from me, and she has infinity, but I can't get It for at least 2more months. So parts of Windsor have It, not all.

By aston110 on 11 Jan 2012

Fast broadband......my a**e

The goverment is handing money out so people out in the country can get fast broadband and what does bt spend it on? Yes the towns and cities. While those in towns and cities get fast broadband we are left with snails pace internet for the same price ... Confused...... Would you pay a taxi a 200 mile fare to go 2 miles? NO I DONT THINK SO. why is nothing being done? Answer - the goverment only cares for town folk.

By v88rus on 10 Jul 2012

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