Why is fibre broadband so shite in London?

Discussion in 'London and the South East' started by Hollis, Aug 7, 2017.

  1. Hollis

    Hollis bloody furious

    Excuse my London-centric elitism, but I live in zone 3, and it seems only Virgin offer fibre broadband, creating a basic monopoly. I watch my bill being increased and increased again, yet can't switch to any other provider. I seem to be paying even shed loads more than the Virgin offers.

    What's the background to this? Why have BT or anyone else been so lame in upgrading their networks?

  2. Sirena

    Sirena Don't monkey with the buzzsaw

    BT are crazily pushing their super fast fibre broadband.

    Most of the spam calls on my phone come from them.

    It may be just a South London thing. I never was classy enough to live in North London.
  3. UnderAnOpenSky

    UnderAnOpenSky baseline neural therapy

    Tell them your hacked of with the price increase and the other offerings will do you. If your at end of contract they will probably drop the price to keep you as a customer.
  4. EastEnder

    EastEnder Brixton Barnacle

    There's your problem mate, try moving to civilisation! You're practically in Scotland...:rolleyes:
  5. Casual Observer

    Casual Observer binoculars

    This is very odd, Hollis. I'm thinking you might be mistaken. If not then you must be the only bloke in London who can't get up to 38Mbps or faster from BT. I think most London homes can get up to 76Mbps from BT these days if they want it.

    Pedant alert: Virgin deliver their service over a cable network, not a fibre network. BT offer fibre broadband (fibre from the telephone exchange to the street cabinet, then old style copper telephone wire from the street cabinet to your home).
  6. cupid_stunt

    cupid_stunt & dyslexic cnut.

    Pedant alert:
    Virgin does use a fibre network...

    Cable vs fibre optic broadband: What’s the difference?
  7. pseudonarcissus

    pseudonarcissus fluttering and dancing

    an extract from my FTP bill:
    100Mb Broadband with Phone (from 01 Aug 2017 to 31 Aug 2017) £37.50
    Hyperoptic are wonderful
    hash tag likes this.
  8. peterkro

    peterkro Greasin' on American Express card.

  9. cupid_stunt

    cupid_stunt & dyslexic cnut.

    Pedant alert:
    So, 'the last mile' is still by co-ax. :p

  10. Casual Observer

    Casual Observer binoculars

    No, I have to hold firm here Cupid. Virgin Media deliver their services over an ostensibly cable network. The bloke who wrote the article you reference is mistaken although the confusion is understandable and the classification of access technologies has always been slightly open to interpretation.

    Virgin Media inherited their network from NTL/Telewest who previously used it to deliver cable TV services.

    In the old pre-fibre broadband days, in the UK, it was a battle between DSL (copper) and cable. Cable was faster than DSL, so Virgin would accentuate this in their advertising. Fibre arrives here and is new fast and sexy so Virgin, keen to tap into that, begin to advertise their services as 'fibre'.

    Don't bet me started on FTTb, FTTn etc or we'll be here all night.

    I should declare my hand here - I worked for a broadband analysis company for 10 years. Our clients included both Virgin Media and Broadband Choices (the company whose article you reference).
  11. EastEnder

    EastEnder Brixton Barnacle

    You sure?

    Virgin Media Adverts Still Can't Tell Copper Coax from Fibre Optic - ISPreview UK

    I don't pretend to be particularly knowledgeable on this subject, but I'd be surprised if Virgin was still using a mainly cable based network, sounds more like they're fibre to the box then copper the final leg (same as many supposedly "fibre" based services). That article points out where Virgin have been telling porkies, but does imply that their network itself is fibre, with coax as the final bits.
  12. cupid_stunt

    cupid_stunt & dyslexic cnut.

    Casual Observer - Well according to the Virgin engineer across the road from me, Virgin is fibre to the box up the road, and coax there after.

    This seems supported in the previous link provided, the one provided by EastEnder, sites such as Wikipedia, U-switch and even OFCOM.

    Average cable broadband speed overtakes fibre

    Virgin Media - Wikipedia

    Fibre-optic broadband — What is fibre? - Guide to Fibre Optic Broadband. Fibre Optic Broadband from BT Infinity and Virgin Media Explained. How Does Fibre Optic Broadband Work? Which are the Best Fibre OPtic Broadband Packages? Find Out Here.
    Bahnhof Strasse likes this.
  13. peterkro

    peterkro Greasin' on American Express card.

    No it's not the last two hundred metres certainly.
    Takes one to know one.
  14. cupid_stunt

    cupid_stunt & dyslexic cnut.

    Did you not read the quote in my post?

    'The Last Mile' isn't specific to an actual distance, just 'final leg' of the connection.

    *stands ground with stern face* :D
  15. salem

    salem Well-Known Member

    We've got a fibre connection but it's pretty shit, lucky to get 15Mbps and it frequently slows right down. Used BT and now plusnet so I think it's cray wiring rather then ISP issue :(
  16. Mine comes out from London half way to Portsmouth and is still fast. Clearly zone 3 is being punished for being neither in the centre or outside, the Lib Dems of zones, so to speak.

  17. peterkro

    peterkro Greasin' on American Express card.

    So in horse racing "the last furlong" could well be the entire race,I think not.I give up.
  18. cupid_stunt

    cupid_stunt & dyslexic cnut.

    'The last mile' is a colloquial phrase, and therefore not literal, unlike 'the last furlong'.

    Comparing the telecommunication industry to horse racing is where madness begins.
  19. skyscraper101

    skyscraper101 0891 50 50 50

    If BT Infinity were able to compete with Virgin's prices I'd have stuck with them as they were pretty solid for me over the last couple of years.

    Just be very careful if you do go with Virgin. I'm over 2 months still waiting to get an installation date. Virgin Media saga here from post 215 onwards.
  20. Casual Observer

    Casual Observer binoculars

    Eastender and Cupid - I would say that all of the articles that you both reference or quote from support rather than contradict the assertion that Virgin Media deliver their services over a cable (DOCSIS) network.

    The word 'cable' is itself open to interpretation. Nerds or ex-semi nerds (me) would only ever use cable to mean DOCSIS cable. Talk of 'fibre optic cable' is confusing as 'fibre' and 'cable' are two traditionally words used to describe two separate access technology classifications.

    I should add that I'm a couple of years out of the fixed broadband analysis game. At the time I left, Liberty Global had just bought Virgin Media and were about to invest £2bn in their UK broadband infrastructure to acquire more customers. Up until then, Virgin's cable network reached something like 60% of UK homes (compared to BT's 99%). I don't know if the new money was spent (or is about to be spent) on expanding the existing DOCSIS network or supplementing it with an additional but separate fibre network.
  21. EastEnder

    EastEnder Brixton Barnacle

    Surely all it really boils down to is whether the bulk of Virgin's network is based on glass or copper? In contemporary nomenclature I'd assume that 99% of people on hearing "fibre" assume that means glass (or possibly plastic, for the pedants), whereas anything else is taken to mean a copper wire of some form. Whilst you can certainly have a "fibre optic cable", I think it's safe to assume that most people think cable==metal, fibre==glass. No doubt there's nuances & technological idiosyncrasies that allow for ambiguities & open interpretations, but to the layman, fibre = photos whizzing through glass, cable = elections plodding along metal.
  22. bromley

    bromley ...isn't as good as Lewisham.

    I get a decent discount on my Sky Broadband because they are unable to provide fibre. :)
  23. hash tag

    hash tag Pedicabo omnes

    I too use Hyperoptic, I don't pay nearly half that ( I dont need all that speed) and have never had a problem :thumbs:
  24. MAD-T-REX

    MAD-T-REX Well-Known Member

    Parts of London are shit out of luck when it comes to broadband. Some areas near the Docklands are a mess of very long exchange only lines, which provides a pathetic ADSL connection, but our fearless mayor is springing into action/a consultation:

    London Mayor Unveils Vague Plan to Tackle City's Broadband "Not Spots" - ISPreview UK
  25. Casual Observer

    Casual Observer binoculars

    You're quite right T-Rex, I thought about parts of Westminster being shit for superfast broadband after my first post and should have corrected it. It's mostly commercial and few residential buildings around there, the Barbican estate being one. Businesses by and large don't really need superfast unless all their employees are watching multiple HD films at the same time so BT, Virgin Media etc. are less likely to bother kitting those areas with the fast stuff. I guess the same applies to Docklands although I'm not sure how lopsided the business/residential premises mix is around there.
  26. Hollis

    Hollis bloody furious

    I'm afraid I've checked using different 'switch' websites and directly on different broadband sides, and its only virgin that provides fibre in the challenging environment of Wood Green.
  27. paolo

    paolo Well-Known Member

    Put your postcode in here, to find out the deployment status:

    When can I get fibre? - Openreach
    Hollis likes this.
  28. paolo

    paolo Well-Known Member

    The street I used to live on Brixton is a no-fibre road. After checking with OpenReach, I ended up finding out that Lambeth council had refused planning permission for the new cabinet, because the street is a conservation area.
  29. EastEnder

    EastEnder Brixton Barnacle

    Surely the easiest option would be to move somewhere closer to civilisation?
    cupid_stunt likes this.
  30. paolo

    paolo Well-Known Member

    So Hollis, what's the story for your street?

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