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BT To Test Huawei 1Gbps Broadband Over Copper

Unknown Lamer posted about 9 months ago | from the dream-of-dsl dept.

Networking 77

judgecorp writes "BT is testing a different fiber broadband topology FTTdp (Fiber to the distribution point) and G.FAST, which could give 1Gbps broadband speeds at its research site Adastral Park in Britain. FTTdp pushes the network fiber closer to the user's premises than FTTC (Fiber to the Cabinet). In many cases this is less than 250m, a distance at which it's possible to get 1Gbps over the copper phone network using G.FAST, a new variation of VDSL broadband ."

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77 comments

oh god who cares (1, Insightful)

Joining Yet Again (2992179) | about 9 months ago | (#45188639)

BT used to do interesting things, and was about to d oa very early fibre rollout before Thatcher stuck her beak in, but it's been playing catchup with the rest of the world since it was privatised.

Re:oh god who cares (1)

billcarson (2438218) | about 9 months ago | (#45188729)

You may find comfort in the fact that most European government-owned telcos went down the same road.
At least BT has some international presence.

Re:oh god who cares (1)

mjwalshe (1680392) | about 9 months ago | (#45188951)

Telefonica has in south america *nudge *nudge* *wink* *wink* or should that be *inocent smile* (tm) Sally Bercow

Re:oh god who cares (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45188761)

oh that damned lady Thatcher and her will to have lazy ass leftards such as you working for results ... boooooo boooo cry us a river.

Re:oh god who cares (1, Offtopic)

Joining Yet Again (2992179) | about 9 months ago | (#45188869)

You appear to have a fundamental misunderstanding of the difference between neoliberalism (which is classical liberalism renamed, and gave us workhouses etc.) and social democracy.

Neoliberalism is based on the capitalistic belief that it is better to accumulate capital and invest it wisely than to labour.

Socialism is based on the belief that people should not be able to gain personally except from labour.

Social democracy takes a bit of both, although really it is capitalism with a Keynesian bent rather than socialism with a bit of NEP

The upshot of this is that while the average working person is entitled to more rest under social democracy, those who were previously able to leech off their capital genuinely had to "work for results". Thatcherism reversed that, which is why 30 years later Britain's a fucking joke and America's circling the drain.

In particular, BT hasn't had to work much for results for 30 years.

Re:oh god who cares (1)

K. S. Kyosuke (729550) | about 9 months ago | (#45191879)

Neoliberalism is based on the capitalistic belief that it is better to accumulate capital and invest it wisely than to labour.

It's never good to labour (childbirth excepted, of course). That's what we have robots for! Accumulate capital and invest it into robots.

Re:oh god who cares (1)

Joining Yet Again (2992179) | about 9 months ago | (#45192295)

The only way to replace all labourers with robots is to produce robots with the intelligence of humans.

And then any ethical system worth its salt would have to give the same rights to the robots as to the humans.

And then you have the same problem as before, but with greater population across at least two species.

Wheeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee.

Re:oh god who cares (0)

mjwalshe (1680392) | about 9 months ago | (#45188967)

no she preferd to sell people who worked down the river to the barow boys in the city or that nice Mr Murdoch

Re:oh god who cares (1)

operagost (62405) | about 9 months ago | (#45190259)

Seriously. It's understandable that some people think the USA's current woes are GWB's fault, being that his administration was recent. But Brits are blaming Thatcher for not rolling out FTTP in the 1980s before most people even had computers in their homes? It's like jumping on James K. Polk for not getting that transcontinental railroad done so that the settlers could migrate to Oregon in comfortable Pullman cars instead of smelling the butts of oxen and dying of dysentery.

Re:oh god who cares (3, Insightful)

Joining Yet Again (2992179) | about 9 months ago | (#45191069)

No, numbnuts, Brits are blaming Thatcher for explicitly prohibiting BT from deploying its final brilliant development as a public telecommuncations researcher and provider. It would have been like Reagan saying, if relevant events were contemporaneous, "No, AT&T, now we've broken you up, you must wipe all your Unix source code rather than releasing your new OS. Otherwise Microsoft won't be able to compete so effectively."

Of course we continue to blame that government for implementing the arrangement which exists to this day - one where progress is merely about playing technical catch-up, and where the regulators have to drag the children kicking and screaming to get them to provide any decent level of service.

I could blame you if it makes you feel better, though?

Re:oh god who cares (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45188921)

You are talking crap. You snaggle-tooth limeys have broadband speeds exceeding most US ISPs and for significantly less money.

Furthermore, BT have installed the vast majority of fibre in the UK, they merely haven't updated all the RSBs to allow faster networking to the premise. Add to that they have to give access to any ISP at cost.

Take your leftie bullshit elsewhere or fuck off to a commie country.

Re:oh god who cares (1, Insightful)

Joining Yet Again (2992179) | about 9 months ago | (#45189029)

Of course we have better broadband than the US: we're a pissant islet in a pond, and Oftel/Ofcom has spent much of its life kicking BT into rolling out service as far and wide as possible (although the unprofitable areas e.g. Scottish Highlands are actually completed with government money - with BT raking in the profits at the end).

And give access to any ISP at cost - are you slow? They have to give access to any ISP at regulated prices, but they certainly are allowed to make a profit. Since telecoms is a natural monopoly and any attempt to create competition is really just the government stepping in and forcing the incumbent operator and local councils to dig up the roads and share pipework/exchanges, it's in fact only "leftie bullshit" which has given us something remotely resembling "competitive" offerings in the UK.

It's classical Thatcherism: what looks like freeing up a market is in fact carefully regulating it to give the impression of competition, when in fact all she did was create a scenario where government had to endlessly socialise losses and channel profits to a bunch of useless leeches. Just as she did with railways, energy companies, water companies, banking industry(Girobank), and is about to happen with the postal service.

Re:oh god who cares (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45191467)

For those who need some further clarification:
The US State of Texas has over 3 TIMES as much land area as the whole of Great Britain and less than half the population.

Re:oh god who cares (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45199279)

And still a single exchange is overloaded with less people.

Re:oh god who cares (1)

mjwalshe (1680392) | about 9 months ago | (#45188931)

yes wish I could mod you up it was done deal all the plans had been made and coasted just needed the go ahead. but no "pretend" competition was preferred which made a ton of money for those in the city the investors in cable lost their shirts and Richard Branson picked most of it up for a song in the fire sale.

Re:oh god who cares (2)

Joining Yet Again (2992179) | about 9 months ago | (#45189171)

Yeah. I'm not sure whether she hated "socialism" or "free markets" more, but she did as much as she could to make sure Britain enjoyed the features of neither.

Re:oh god who cares (1)

abigsmurf (919188) | about 9 months ago | (#45192947)

Wait... is this the same nationalized BT that wouldn't let 'upgrade' my phone line from rotary to touch tone dialing without paying a massive fee?

Read some of the horror stories about people who had to deal with BT for company phone systems whilst they had a monopoly. Outdated, awful equipment that you had little choice to go with because there was no one else to choose from.

I find the romantic view that people take of nationalized monopolies amusing. British Rail is another example. Awful punctuality, constant strikes, 30-40 year old trains (still having dangerous 'slam door' trains in the 90's was an embarrassment) and almost as poor signalling equipment.

Re:oh god who cares (1)

Joining Yet Again (2992179) | about 9 months ago | (#45193561)

1) Wait, you're whining that companies charge you to upgrade stuff? You do realise that parts and labour cost money, yeah? And that what might seem trivial technology today wasn't trivial 30 years ago, yes?

2) BT only existed for 4 years as a distinct state monopoly (1981-4), and that was in preparation for privatisation. During this time, Thatcher deliberately retarded development - hence abortion of groundbreaking fibre rollout. If you heard horror stories about having to deal with BT in the '80s, the problem was precisely because it was a the first of a string of absurd combinations of privatisation and regulation;

3) Re trains, you're simply dreaming about "awful punctuality" and "constant strikes". I could speak from anecdote - my father was a City commuter for 25 years up to the early '90s, and I for several years in the '90s, enduring the horrible ride through privatisation. But again, as is well-documented, Thatcher underinvested in the railways by policy, which is why you had outdated rolling stock (which were still a hell of a lot more comfortable than the modern carriages, but I digress). The final railway privatisation simply did not consider a comprehensive plan for on-going track maintenance, which is why two avoidable fatal accidents later the whole sorry joke that was Railtrack went bust and had to be rescued by the government. Capitalise profits; socialise losses - too big to fail - however you want to describe it.

Since railway privatisation was the Tory's most obvious failure, it shows some pretty big ideological balls to raise it. (I would say that the public housing sell-off was the worst of all, since it contributed toward the housing bubble and market-linked social security bill surge of the 2000s. But the effect here was more subtle and delayed.

Re:oh god who cares (1)

Goose In Orbit (199293) | about 9 months ago | (#45194349)

Re: 1) How does charging £125 (about $200 at today's exchange rate) for some bloke in an office to press a button grab you?

Re:oh god who cares (1)

Joining Yet Again (2992179) | about 9 months ago | (#45194681)

Because, dear boy, money was already invested when the exhange equipment was upgraded - obviously you can't do these things subscriber by subscriber - and you're paying your contribution of £125 when you decide to make the switchover.

You might as well ask, "Why do LLU ISPs charge me £60 to move a cable between two sockets?" Or why does any service charge a setup fee when clearly the shit is already in place? Honestly this isn't rocket science.

Re:oh god who cares (1)

Goose In Orbit (199293) | about 9 months ago | (#45199125)

I'm not saying that I shouldn't have been charged - just that it seems way out of proportion to the effort involved, even with some of it covering initial costs.

If anyone has some (UK-centric) figures regarding typical exchange costs, expected lifetimes, and subscriber numbers, etc and can show that this figure isn't some over-inflated profit grab, then I'll happily stand corrected...

Re:oh god who cares (1)

Joining Yet Again (2992179) | about 9 months ago | (#45199337)

"...it seems [guilt]..."

"If [proof of innocence], I'll happily stand corrected..."

I'm sure you realise you were hasty with your accusations, but it's better to withdraw rather than to dig a further hole.

Anyway, you're referencing the upgrade from electromechanical to electronic exchanges which happened through the early '90s. You weren't paying for the DTMF ability, but a contribution toward the whole exchange system being rebuilt. And much of the work happened after privatisation, when they were entitled to make some profit (but only to the extent the regulator permitted it, and with competition allowed precisely to the extent which suited Thatcher's friends, which is what made the whole thing so fucked up). Would it have been cheaper if kept as a subsidiary of the GPO? Probably. But then we'd have all had fibre in the late '80s!

Re:oh god who cares (1)

Goose In Orbit (199293) | about 9 months ago | (#45207357)

Hasty? No... this happened in 2007

The utter fuckup that was the 80's privatisations... now that I can agree with.

Hey ppl lets remove Fiber cables! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45188735)

Copper is back in business.

Re:Hey ppl lets remove Fiber cables! (2)

petermgreen (876956) | about 9 months ago | (#45189867)

Umm.I don't think this is about removing fiber, indeed by the sounds of it it's about installing fiber closer to the customer.

Many telcos are reluctant to do fiber to the premisis because it means sending a fiber tech into the home to liase with the customer about locations and then route and splice the new fiber, whereas apparently with this new tech they can achive gigabit speeds while only having to route the fiber to within 250m of a cluster of premises (e.g. to the top of the pole serving those premisis).

The question I would have is whether there is enough demand in the required speed range to make it worthwhile doing this. Does it make sense to put boxes on the top of poles that only end up serving one house each because everyone else is happy with their existing FTTC (or even regular ADSL) service or does it make more sense just to run fiber directly to those few houses who want something more than FTTC can offer?

Re:Hey ppl lets remove Fiber cables! (1)

Bengie (1121981) | about 9 months ago | (#45200033)

Totally worth placing a $50,000 of piece of equipment in the field that needs power, UPS, cooling, heating, compared to just $500 of passive fiber. They may save money on not sending a fiber tech into a house, but they lose everywhere else. with fiber, a single GPON chassis can serve up to 5,000 people within 20km. These DSL setups are more like serving 100 people within 250m. But hey, you don't need to trench fiber. With Active Ethernet, you can serve about 500 people within 80km on single chassis. No need for expensive equipment in the field that needs to weather the elements, everything can be back in your datacenter.

Re:Hey ppl lets remove Fiber cables! (1)

petermgreen (876956) | about 9 months ago | (#45232581)

According to the article these FTTdp boxes will be "reverse powered" from the customer premisis equipment eliminating the need to provision power supplies for them. Making small boxes of electronics that can live up poles or in underground chambers is hardly a new thing.

Ultimately I guess it comes down to how much do the FTTdp boxes cost. If they are $50K each then there is no way it will be viable but I don't see any reason for them to be that expensive.

One Gbps over copper wire? (4, Informative)

codeusirae (3036835) | about 9 months ago | (#45188767)

"FTTdp pushes the network fiber closer to the user's premises than FTTC (Fiber to the Cabinet). In many cases this is less than 250m, a distance at which it's possible to get 1Gbps over the copper phone network using G.FAST, a new variation of VDSL broadband"

Throughput depends on the quality of the copper and the properties of the earth it's buried in. There's also cross-talk to consider which can lead to a reduction of 2/5ths in the worst case scenario.

Re:One Gbps over copper wire? (2)

MightyYar (622222) | about 9 months ago | (#45188837)

I wonder if the reduction is proportional to what we get with DSL currently? For example, if I only get 1.5Mbps from my "up to 3.0Mbps" DSL line, I wonder if this would translate to an approximate 500Mbps with this newer technology. If that is the case, then I'd still sign up :)

Re:One Gbps over copper wire? (1)

neokushan (932374) | about 9 months ago | (#45189059)

Very doubtful, the reason you're getting "up to 3.0Mbit" is because it's largely a guess based on how far away from the Exchange they think you are. The 1.5Mbit is likely because there's more copper than they anticipated, the copper is of low quality or you're actually using an aluminium line which is even worse.
Still, the closer you are to the fibre, the less significant the drop-off is. ADSL, ADSL2 and VDSL2+ all end up at about the same speed after a certain length - http://www.internetstreams.co.uk/images/vdsl2_downstream_500w.gif [internetstreams.co.uk] and it seems as though you are beyond this length to be only getting "up to" 3Mbit. If this technology were in play, you should be a lot closer to the DP and thus length is less of an issue. Line quality still will be, but it means you've got a much better chance of hitting well above 500Mbit, assuming the degradation is about the same.

Re:One Gbps over copper wire? (1)

AHuxley (892839) | about 9 months ago | (#45188959)

The UK might have a larger diameter copper wire too. 24 AWG (0.5 mm)??
But the distance is very short. This might be good for optical in the basement? At 250m thats a lot of powered, cooled, powerful cpu nodes needed in cabinets out in suburbia. Might as well just run optical all the way in many areas as cross talk/noise will add up fast?

Re:One Gbps over copper wire? (2)

Albanach (527650) | about 9 months ago | (#45189313)

At 250m thats a lot of powered, cooled, powerful cpu nodes needed in cabinets out in suburbia. Might as well just run optical all the way in many areas as cross talk/noise will add up fast?

You've not been to Britain, have you?

Re:One Gbps over copper wire? (1)

AHuxley (892839) | about 9 months ago | (#45196005)

The problem for any modern telco is the cooling, power use, limited optical to node to optical home upgrade options while passing on the very expensive copper up keep costs.
Once this tech is installed its limited to the copper quality, length, cross talk and only a few people can request limited optical back to the node upgrades.
For all the talk of a wonderful future network over existing copper, thats the service level thats a broadband min? 20? 25Mbps?
http://www.ispreview.co.uk/index.php/2013/03/why-fibre-based-broadband-is-not-always-superfast.html [ispreview.co.uk] welcome to the world of copper and a "promised download speeds of at least 2Mbps (Universal Service Commitment)"

Re:One Gbps over copper wire? (1)

mrbester (200927) | about 9 months ago | (#45189053)

"Last mile" (normally less as mentioned in TFA) is normally suspended wire.

Re:One Gbps over copper wire? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45189529)

It's rarely suspended wire in the UK except in rural areas.

Re:One Gbps over copper wire? (1)

jabuzz (182671) | about 9 months ago | (#45189597)

I don't know about that, my house, my parents house and my sisters house all have overhead into the property. However anything built in the last thirty years just about anywhere outside really remote rural locations will most likely be underground but fully ducted.

Now the real question is why if you want FTTP and have an existing duct for copper do BT insist on a new duct for the fibre being laid???

Re:One Gbps over copper wire? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45189717)

I don't know about that, my house, my parents house and my sisters house all have overhead into the property. However anything built in the last thirty years just about anywhere outside really remote rural locations will most likely be underground but fully ducted.

Now the real question is why if you want FTTP and have an existing duct for copper do BT insist on a new duct for the fibre being laid???

There are no ducts, this isnt germany, it was proposed but never implemented so each utility just buried their own individual cables to the premises and have to dig them back up for maintenance or branching on more houses down some hole in the road. Mostly the copper connection from each house is strung on cantenary wires back to a pole.
The local exchange is usually the first point to have racking, power and somewhere dry to locate the kit needed.

Re:One Gbps over copper wire? (1)

jabuzz (182671) | about 9 months ago | (#45198405)

If you don't believe there are ducts for all new properties then you are simply ignorant of the facts. Perhaps this Openreach (the arm of BT that is responsible for the infrastructure) document for developers can disabuse you of your ignorance.

http://www.openreach.co.uk/orpg/home/network/developingournetwork/documentationandinformation/buildersguide/downloads/developers_guide.pdf [openreach.co.uk]

Short story is that everything is ducted and has been for many years.

Re:One Gbps over copper wire? (1)

mrbester (200927) | about 9 months ago | (#45191977)

If there's a duct then fibre can be blown through. Insisting on laying a new duct is just silly and wasteful as it costs more.

Did they seek U.S. Congress approval? (0)

HansKloss (665474) | about 9 months ago | (#45188857)

Last year they banned Huawei over "spying concerns" from using their equipment in U.S market.

Thanks God, "Five Eyes" countries are "spying free" and protect us from "bad" Chinese.

Re:Did they seek U.S. Congress approval? (3, Informative)

Kagato (116051) | about 9 months ago | (#45188929)

The US gov't buys plenty of things made in China. That's not the issue. Buying equipment from Huawei is buying products from Palantir (a CIA funded technology company). They are both companies with close ties to military and intelligence gathering.

Still, when the US Gov't does buy from China they do prefer to source it from companies like Foxconn, which are Taiwanese owned.

That aside (1)

Sycraft-fu (314770) | about 9 months ago | (#45190005)

Doesn't matter if Huawei has a backdoor in it, since the front door is wide open. FX has given a couple talks about it: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w-K1YpJp07s [youtube.com] http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KUC_FduwWxU [youtube.com] . The long and the short of it is tons of security holes, pretty amateur coding mistakes, no vulnerability tracking, etc.

That right there should be reason enough not to buy them. Never mind government ties, evil backdoors, etc, these things are just not secure and well designed. They are classic "You get what you pay for."

Re:That aside (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45193107)

Wow it's worse than I thought.
Looks like Huawei blocked youtube to Britain.

Re:Did they seek U.S. Congress approval? (1)

Transfinite (1684592) | about 9 months ago | (#45190087)

Except BT is nothing do to with the US, okay?! BT is British Telecoms. Not everything is about the USA, lets get that straight. You yanks seriously need to learn that, it comes across as arrogant and ignorant. Being British myself however I do agree. We should not be dealing with Huawei

Re:Did they seek U.S. Congress approval? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45191185)

Some of BT's biggest customers are in the US. My company spends millions with them every year.

Man, you brits get so bent out of shape over the silliest of things...

Re:Did they seek U.S. Congress approval? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45200603)

Not everything is about the USA, lets get that straight. You yanks seriously need to learn that, it comes across as arrogant and ignorant.

That taught them! ;)

Re:Did they seek U.S. Congress approval? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45188985)

BT, British Telecom....

mod 0p (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45188875)

My ISP in France (Free) provides Fiber to the home (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45188963)

So i'd say the UK needs to do some catching up.

Re:My ISP in France (Free) provides Fiber to the h (1)

neokushan (932374) | about 9 months ago | (#45189087)

BT also provides FTTH and in many areas Fibre-on-demand (i.e. fibre isn't installed but you can pay to get it installed if you want). I dare say france is in a similar position of pure fibre in some areas, hybrid fibre/coax in others and pure copper in the more remote areas.

Re:My ISP in France (Free) provides Fiber to the h (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45198859)

Just ordered 200MBit fibre about four miles from Britain's most southerly point (it's pretty rural). We've got a long way to go, but it's not bad.

Not again... (1)

FridayBob (619244) | about 9 months ago | (#45189145)

From the 16 July ITU press release [itu.int] :

... G.fast is designed to deliver superfast downloads up to a distance of 250 meters, thereby eliminating the expense of installing fibre between the distribution point and people’s homes.

Because that's what this is all about. It's yet another excuse not to make the investment we've all been waiting so long for. And besides, most subscribers will not be within 250 meters of their DSLAM anyway, crosstalk can still lead to a significant reduction in performance and the upload speed will always be just a fraction of 1Gbps.

Will the only way forward be for us to nationalize our telecommunications infrastructure?

Re:Not again... (1)

SkunkPussy (85271) | about 9 months ago | (#45189207)

I get 16 Mbit upload from my BT Infinity. On the one hand its less than 1/4 of my download speed...on the other hand, I used to have download speeds that were worse than that!

Re:Not again... (1)

FridayBob (619244) | about 9 months ago | (#45189403)

With ADSL2+ here in the Netherlands I used to get as much as 16/1 Mbps down/up. Then in mid-2008 DSL became so popular in my neighborhood that the resultant crosstalk reduced my download speed to less than 8 Mbps. I now have the option to upgrade my connection to VDSL, but for some reason I'm not too enthusiastic about it.

Re:Not again... (1)

Rising Ape (1620461) | about 9 months ago | (#45190731)

Because that's what this is all about. It's yet another excuse not to make the investment we've all been waiting so long for.

You've been waiting for maybe - there's not much point in having a whizz-bang FTTH network if it's too expensive to afford. Better to have something that's a much lower cost and good enough for most people. How many people would even notice the difference between 40 Mbps FTTC and 1 Gbps FTTH?

Re:Not again... (1)

FridayBob (619244) | about 9 months ago | (#45191921)

Here in the Netherlands FTTH is not at all that expensive. I currently have an 8/1 Mbps ADSL connection for about EUR 30.50 a month, while a 100/100 Mbps fiber connection from the same provider costs EUR 55.93 a month (in 2005 I was still paying around EUR 80.00 for the fastest DSL connection). There are cheaper providers, but I would prefer mine (XS4ALL) over the competition any day. Moreover, the houses in all recently built neighborhoods in this country already have fiber connections instead of copper (so maybe I just need to move).

Fiber also has another advantage for people like myself: no modem required. Instead, all I would have to do is connect my server's external Ethernet interface directly to the Internet port on an Optical Network Terminal. On the server side, this makes it necessary to install and configure the ppp package and set up an iptables firewall, but I already do all that. What it would save me from doing, however, is always worrying about finding a suitable modem that supports something like PPP-passthough, or SIP-spoof, or DHCP-spoof, so that I can bypass the horrid routing software that's always included with DSL modems these days.

As for your last point, though, I suspect that you're right. I once asked Reggefiber, a company that installs FTTH in the Netherlands, if they were planning to do anything in my neighborhood, and they said no. When asked under what circumstances they would change their mind, they said that if I personally were to conduct a survey of all of the 2000 or so homes in my area and discovered that at least 40-50% of the people would be interested in swapping their copper for a fiber connection, then Reggefiber might be interested. Then again, maybe not; they refused to give any guarantee. I'm sure they are very aware of any perceived consumer disinterest.

Re:Not again... (1)

Rising Ape (1620461) | about 9 months ago | (#45192439)

A 25 euro per month premium is quite a lot though - it's about double the typical premium for FTTC over normal ADSL in the UK. The major ISPs here seem to view the market as very price sensitive, and are pretty cautious about taking risks. In fact I'm surprised that BT decided to go for any kind of faster-than-ADSL network rollout - they usually prefer to milk what they've got.

For new builds of course, FTTH makes perfect sense as you've got to lay cable anyway - but there aren't many new builds here despite a real need and silly housing prices. But that's a different issue.

Re:Not again... (1)

petermgreen (876956) | about 9 months ago | (#45194781)

most subscribers will not be within 250 meters of their DSLAM anyway

The whole point of "FTTdp" is to move the DSLAM closer to the end user.

Copper cables run from the telephone exchange to what is known officially a "primary connection point" or more loosely a "cabinet". This is usually a green box by the side of the road. The primary connection point is basically a massive patch panel allowing any line from the exchange to be connected to any customer line. Cables from the PCP then run to distribution points, these may be at the top of poles, on the side of buildings or underground. Finally a thin cable with only a couple of pairs runs to your house.

DSL was traditionally deployed at the telephone exchange, so it had to go through all those cables to get to your house. Recent BT openreach introduced FTTC where a second cabinet is installed alongside the PCP cabinet containing the DSLAM. That brought the DSLAM closer to the customer allowing them to offer higher speeds. They also introduced "Fiber to the premisis on demand" which lets you get higher speeds if FTTC is not enough but installation charges are fairly high.

Now they are trialling (and of course this may or may not pan out) the possibility of having DSLAMs at the distribution point powered by the customer premisis equipment (thereby avoiding the need to get a mains supply to every DP).

and the upload speed will always be just a fraction of 1Gbps.

Of course that is the way BT like it :(. Affordable symmetric "broadband" connections would cannibalise their leased line revenues even more than current broadband services do. Even the FTTP services have relatively lousy upstream bandwidth :(

On the plus side BT openreach's fiber to the cabinet does at least offer better upstream than virgin media cable.

Hmm, testing (1)

Pop69 (700500) | about 9 months ago | (#45189159)

So it'll be about 10 years before they start whining they don't have enough money to roll it out and possibly 20 before the general public outside of select areas actually see it as an available product ?

That doesn't mean 1Gbps DSL speeds (2)

gravis777 (123605) | about 9 months ago | (#45189219)

Test speeds rarely relate to what consumers can expect to get. In the mid-late 90s (don't remember the exact year) I was in one of the early places to get Cable modems. The ISP was testing 100Mbps as a proof of concept, I had 2Mbps which was the fastest they offered customers. It has only been in the past couple of years that they started offering 100Mbps to customers - so roughly 15 years after it was tested.

Re:That doesn't mean 1Gbps DSL speeds (1)

wagnerrp (1305589) | about 9 months ago | (#45190167)

Cable is a fixed speed interconnect. It's 38Mbps per channel, and with DOCSIS 3.0, four channels minimum. If the cable company wants to offer 150Mbps service, you will get that, and you will not need to change any hardware to do so. The issue is that it is a shared interconnect, so you're sharing some 6Gbps of throughput between analog cable, digital cable, and a few hundred of your nearest neighbors.

DSL is a dedicated, variable rate interconnect. Your transfer speed is dependent only on your own cable quality and noise level. The issue at that point in the same issue with cable networks, that your throughput is shared at each and every upstream aggregation point. As subscribership increases, the real issue becomes bottlenecks on the backbone.

Re:That doesn't mean 1Gbps DSL speeds (2)

gravis777 (123605) | about 9 months ago | (#45192527)

Yes, but that wasn't my point - I wasn't talking about the difference between a dedicated connection and a shared connection, I was stating that just because they are running tests on it doesn't mean that people can expect to get these speeds at their homes anytime soon.

Re:That doesn't mean 1Gbps DSL speeds (1)

Bengie (1121981) | about 9 months ago | (#45193493)

40mb/s Per virtual channel. A single 6mhz physical channel can support several virtual channels via CDMA. The official spec allows a single device to lock onto virtual channels within the same physical channel. The example given was to lock 8 40mb virtual channels within the same 6mhz physical channel, giving an aggregate of 320mb/s, and you can get near those speeds.

It is recommended to use separate physical channels as each virtual channel in use increases the floor noise, and a wide spectrum to use allows for more resiliency. But if you're a cable provider with few free channels, you can push over 1gb/s over 2-3 6mhz channels.

Upstream not allow for a single device to lock several virtual channels in the same physical channel for reasons like higher noise and less power because of the ranges the upstream uses.

Re:That doesn't mean 1Gbps DSL speeds (1)

wagnerrp (1305589) | about 9 months ago | (#45194631)

40mb/s Per virtual channel. A single 6mhz physical channel can support several virtual channels via CDMA.

Were that the case, cable companies wouldn't be so constrained for bandwidth as they are, and there would be no reason to ever implement switched video.

Re:That doesn't mean 1Gbps DSL speeds (1)

Bengie (1121981) | about 9 months ago | (#45199725)

While you have a lot of bandwidth, you still need some very expensive head units to manage each virtual channel. More limited by money than by physics. At some point it becomes cheaper to just use fiber, even if you can get near the same performance. And that's ignoring all of the other issues with copper vs fiber.

BT can still suck it. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45189581)

Only had problems with them for years, "oh your line can't handle faster speeds." they said. Some crap at like 512KBps

I switched ISPs, not even a new line anywhere, leased from BT since they screwed everyone over, INSTANTLY 3MBps.
The exchanges are pretty much right next to each other for all intents and purposes.
It later got higher as they tested the line and settled at 5-6 on average depending on the line noise which is fairly stable from the stats page, which itself is great to see ever since getting a new router. Never do Belkin.

Yes, "can't handle fast" indeed.
More like their exchange was made out of tin-can telephone network technology. THE GREEEEETEST.

Sure, would be neat if it worked, but after all the crap BT has done and that terrible service before, they bill better read -£xx, AKA them paying me.

V.Fast! (1)

operagost (62405) | about 9 months ago | (#45190307)

G.Fast? Hmph! I've had V.FAST [wikipedia.org] since the 1990s and these savages have only made it up the alphabet to G so far!

Capital Letters In Initialisms (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45190327)

Is anyone else bothered byt the fact that most of the time, trivial words like "the", "of", and "to" are not supposed to be capital letters when initializing?

World of Warcraft == WW
Fiber to the Distribution Pointe == FDP

SB!!!

Re:Capital Letters In Initialisms (1)

kermidge (2221646) | about 9 months ago | (#45195313)

Yes. But when I was in school it was expected that students learned certain bits at one level before being passed to the next. None of the schools I attended had any of the divisive "special needs" stuff with its attendant admin overhead. Someone might get held back a grade but for no longer; they were part of a class and most teachers gentled them along. (We're all born somewhere in the scheme of whatever, so there's no sense laying blame to the individual for that.) I certainly would have appreciated extra stuff alongside regular school, though, but in looking back, that might have been a source for additional unwanted consequences.

The only accommodation I ever saw to anything was Virginia building a raft of schools for just seventh and eighth grades to hand the decade of that bulge in the demographic worm. The one I attended show up on Google Maps, but I don't know what it's being used for. (While they weren't intended to last so long, workmanship was pretty good on the three examples I saw.)

Wait - there was one thing. A guy in fifth grade didn't show up for sixth. We found out he lived at home and got some tutoring, which I now realize was likely for some life skills things. I found out later, after high school - which I happened to attend in that same jurisdiction after a few moves - that in that unenlightened time that his parents only had to pay gas money for the tutor; the school board with the consenting vote of the parents decided that it was only fair to share the load of the tutor's expense rather than over-burden the family.

Different times. Today, given all the misspellings and such, I put it down to ignorance, carelessness, and that most folks are moving so quickly that they have no time for proof-reading or even slowing their typing down enough to catch a few things if they can. As an AC in another thread put it, this is all informal speech, so fuck it.

As for World of Warcraft, I much prefer seeing WoW to WW; the latter, to my generation, stands for World War.

Upload Speeds (1)

john_uy (187459) | about 9 months ago | (#45195507)

What are you going to do with all that 1Gbps download speeds when your upload is capped to 512kbps?

We have been looking at a reliable provider for high upload speeds (uploading big content such as videos.) It seems LTE has got it right now (but signal reliability is not good especially when it rains.) Fiber is not yet available at our area (hopefully it does soon enough.)

Re:Upload Speeds (1)

jabuzz (182671) | about 9 months ago | (#45198435)

Standard FTTC in the UK is either 10 or 20Mbps upload depending on your package. It is the primary I upgraded.

BT + Fast = Never. (1)

Dan Askme (2895283) | about 9 months ago | (#45198575)

I recently had BT FTC (fiber to cab) installed in my area. I upgraded to this new system which promised 80mbit/40mbit.
Dont get me wrong, its a improvement over standard copper ADSL, however, its plagued by basic issues.

The problem with BT, is major network congestion, and, lack of infrastructure that can actually support the user requirements.
Regardless of what glorious speed they "claim" to offer you, unless its 4am, you wont get anywhere near it.

So i'am sorry, but 1Gbps doesn't mean shit coming from BT.
10mbit with a stable/solid connection that doesn't fuck up at dinner time? Yes thanks.

Re:BT + Fast = Never. (1)

Xest (935314) | about 9 months ago | (#45198893)

The problem you're dealing with there is contention at your ISP.

Stop expecting to get a leased line for the same amount as your average kids pocket money.

Get a better ISP or stump up for a leased line if that's what you want. You can't expect to go for the cheapest ISP offering around and not suffer contention issues - the reason your subscription is as cheap as it is is because you're sharing a segment of bandwidth with a bunch of other people and splitting the cost.

If you don't want to pay for the full amount of bandwidth to be reserved for yourself then you can't complain.

Re:BT + Fast = Never. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45203027)

BT's site shows 38mb/9.5mb DSL for £38.45, which is about $62.34. In the USA, I can get 30mb/30mb of dedicated fiber with dedicated bandwidth, but no enterprise SLA, for $60. Your actual bill is less than $60, and that's including taxes, fees, etc, and no bundling required. With this package, you can get 30mb/s to LA, Dallas, New York, London, France, Frankfurt, and Moscow during peak hours. Your pings are almost identical to that of the speed of light, very little router overhead. Jitter is virtually non-existent, about 0.25ms of jitter per 5,000 miles of routing.

All by a small private ISP in a rural town that has turned down government subsidies over the past two decades.

People saying fiber is expensive and so is dedicated bandwidth, obviously don't know what they're talking about.

Re:BT + Fast = Never. (1)

Xest (935314) | about 9 months ago | (#45210821)

You're assuming the cost of bandwidth is uniform across the world, it's most certainly not.

BT actually publish their wholesale prices which the ISPs have to pay so it's not an unknown as to how much it costs. The fact is it's too expensive for ISPs to offer dedicated lines to everyone in the UK.

So I do know what I'm talking about, I'm just not making the mistake you are in believing that if there is cheap unused bandwidth somewhere, that there must be cheap unused bandwidth everywhere. The reality is that some places have much less spare capacity and are in much greater need of investment which costs money.

You can provide a lot of bandwidth on old unused dark fibre that's being sold bargain basement to ISPs, but not so much when a cable needs to be run from scratch and the market is charging a premium to do exactly that.

Re:BT + Fast = Never. (1)

Dan Askme (2895283) | about 9 months ago | (#45204593)

"The problem you're dealing with there is contention at your ISP."
No shit. Did you actually read my post?

"Stop expecting to get a leased line for the same amount as your average kids pocket money."
Do your homework, or, live in the UK, it helps.

"Get a better ISP or stump up for a leased line if that's what you want."
Regardless of the ISP i use, it runs through the BT cabinets (bottle neck 1), and will always touch their main switch centre (bottle neck 2), and only god knows how many hops it takes before it gets to another ISP.

Re:BT + Fast = Never. (1)

Xest (935314) | about 9 months ago | (#45210801)

I do live in the UK and do understand BT's network. There's no bottleneck at the cabs, or the exchange, both these are kitted out for far higher speeds than are available right now.

If you're having speed issues it's purely contention at your ISP (or some other problem at your ISP but the symptoms about certain times of day implies contention).

If you sign up for a business package that guarantees you a specific contention ratio, or none at all, or pay for one of the more expensive ISPs where you pay for your bandwidth outright you wont have these issues.

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