It looks like we shall get an update to our BT broadband service in September 2012. Let me explain…
Up to September 2011, the village had only Broadband from BT on its standard 8Mb services. This usually means a connection of around 3-6Mb. This did not vary which ever Broadband provider you went with because they were all using the same BT equipment in the Wansford Exchange. This applies to all the villages served by the Wansford Exchange.
Legislation changes (Called Local Loop Unbundling) meant that other suppliers could put more up to date kit in local exchanges. Eventually Both Sky and Talk Talk have installed faster equipment in the Wansford exchange. This means, if you subscribe with these providers they claim up to 20Mb (and you probably get up around 15-16Mb connections). Two to three times faster that the standard BT connection. Both have been available since September 2011. Personally I went with Sky and how have a noticebly faster (and cheaper) broadband service.
The source of all this information is a website that monitors the equipment and speeds of exchanges around the country called “www.samknows.com“. Using this link you can see for yourself what is installed in Wansford and when it was fitted.
At the time I considered swapping from BT to Sky I approached BT about their faster services: BT infinity (which is optical cable up to 40Mb) and ADSL2+ which is called 21CN (21st Century Network) and should provide up to 20Mb. However they simply said there were no plans for Infinity to be installed in our exchange. (Note a difference between 21CN and BT infinity which you see advertised on TV)
However, it looks like that, from Sept 2012, that will change.
If you follow this link to Samknows you will find out some good news. There is a date next to “21CN WBC status” for BT to upgrade the exchange. This should also provide 20Mb ADSL2 for the rest of the village (ie you don’t have to be on Sky or Talk talk to get up to 20Mb). This has a ready for service date of 31st August 2012. (I checked with Samknows to see what RFS meant and it means “Ready for Service” ie it should be up and running!)
This means we should have some more kit installed in our exchange and a faster internet service. THIS DOES NOT MEAN WE ARE GETTING CABLE ! (or BT Infinity) What it means is that the equipment will be far better at using the existing copper wire that currently goes into our homes.
So, broadband users of Wansford (and surrounding villages on the Wansford exchange), you seem to have a choice.
1) Stick with existing services of up to 8Mb, but more realistically 3-6Mb, today. Wait until September 2012 and when the exchange is upgraded you should bet up to 20Mb (or so).
2) Swap to Sky or Talk Talk Broadband today and get up to 20Mb now, which provides around 15-16Mb,
We still need to find a way to persuade BT to put cable (BT Infinity) and much faster Broadband into the village.
I’ll continue to update information as it comes available.