It looks like superfast fibre broadband continues to be popular at Everest Park, and there is further justification to our campaign, with news today that PCP102 has once again moved to Waiting List status.
This is the third time the cabinet has been temporarily full since it went live on 8th December 2015. It initially sold out on the 11th December after just 2.5 days, and a second card was fitted and the cabinet went back on sale on the 18th December. The cabinet then went to Waiting List status again just over a month later on the 22nd Jan, this time returning to Available status on the 2nd February.
This time it’s taken nearly three months to, we assume, fill another line card. Whilst that shows a slowdown in takeup, it means the cabinet is half full already, and around 144 lines have been switched over to fibre. This is significantly ahead of our survey response where around 100-120 properties said they would upgrade to fibre within 6 months of it becoming available.
We will obviously prompt Openreach about this and hope they are as swift as the recent second card install at PCP95, which happened within 3 days of the first line card being full.
Celebration in Rooksdown tonight, as PCP95’s VDSL2 cabinet has been declared “ready for service”, and residents connected through it can now order an upgrade to superfast fibre broadband at up to 80Mbps… a massive upgrade from previous highs of 1-2Mbps.
Following repeated chasing of Openreach, whilst they missed their self-imposed target of 31st March by a week, they have been noticibly pulling out all the stops to get the cabinet completed, agreeing with the highways authority to work 5am-9am during the Easter holidays to connect the fibre itself, and today commissioning the cabinet and making it live the same day, appearing to do so around 9.30pm.
It’s not known if Openreach were able to install additional line cards in the cabinet, we shall monitor it to see if it “sells out” quickly like PCPs 92 and 102 did.
For residents looking to upgrade to fibre and interested in the best deals, BT themselves currently have a great offer on unlimited 40/10 fibre, especially if you also take advantage of additional cash back from sites like Quidco. With a £100 reward card, plus £110 Quidco cashback, and the fibre itself reduced to £10/mo + line rental, even including the up front router delivery charge and a £49 activation charge, the monthly cost of fibre plus line rental averages about £15.20 over the 12 months – less even than the regular line rental cost on its own.
It has been a little over 63 hours since Superfast Fibre Broadband went on sale to users of PCP102 – and it seems the initial capacity provided has been sold out already! We’ve fired off an email to query, but the Superfast Openreach website is reporting “High Demand” (which means the cabinet is enabled but all provided ports are occupied), and the BT Wholesale DSL Checker now shows there is a waiting list in place! FTTP-on-demand has remained listed as available, so again pointing to the same issue.
We understand that initially Huawei cabinets like ours are initially deployed with one or two 48-port fibre line cards, but can accommodate up to six in total (giving a maximum capacity per cabinet of 288 ports). It therefore appears at least 48 households have ordered a fibre upgrade in the last 2½ days!
We’ll update this page if/when we find out any news, but if the first card or cards are full, expect it to take Openreach a week or so to provision more.
Whilst the BT Wholesale DSL Checker says that there is a waiting list in place, and you can still place an order, the main BT website doesn’t allow you to place an order with them! The waiting list featureless only added by BT Wholesale in November, and providers will still be updating their systems to work with it. Some providers may well still accept orders by phone, but then and promotional terms and offers are unlikely to be available – so for most people, the best course of action would be to wait.
Superfast Fibre Broadband is now available at Everest Park…. only 5 years after much of Basingstoke received it! This morning (8th Dec 2015) around 10am, Openreach released the new VDSL2 cabinet to ‘accepting orders’. This is the second cabinet of the three we’ve been campaigning about to go live, just leaving PCP95 in Rooksdown.
The new cabinet covers all of the former John Hunt of Everest School site, comprising of the Elevate, Glaciers, and Everest Park developments – around 405 properties in total. We had around 140 registrations to this site, and Openreach typically only install line cards to support 96 lines when they first enable a cabinet (however it will be upgraded with additional cards to 288 lines as needed)…. so if you want fibre broadband for Christmas, get in quick!
There are details of current broadband offers on the Costs and Options page, however please check the details thoroughly with the actual providers before committing to a contact. Also be aware that if you’re currently on an “LLU” package (typically if your current provider is Sky or TalkTalk), there needs to be a two stage process to proving broadband if you change provider, which the new provider should manage, but there is a risk you lose all broadband for a period when doing this. The better providers will manage this more effectively.
As the BT Regional Partnership Director pointed out in August when she visited Everest Park, there are no fibre-fairies, and you won’t automatically receive a speed upgrade because of the new cabinet; you do need to explicitly purchase/upgrade to a fibre broadband package.
Will anyone take advantage of the 330Mb fibre-on-demand product? This is a niche item, and carries an install charge of several thousand pounds, but the ‘regular’ up to 38Mb fibre packages, with line rental, can be had for effectively around £20/month if you switch supplier and choose a promotional offer and take into account cashback and gift vouchers – sometimes even less. With the more niche suppliers such as Zen, the cost with line rental starts at £36.49/mo.