Oxhill News

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South Warwickshire, England.

The Oxhill News

August 2003


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Yet more on Broadband

Register you interest in Broadband internet access at www.bt.com .

Following the discussion in previous editions of the News, I have both visited the BT website and talked to the BT phone helpline.

Broadly, the website suggests that the chance of broadband reaching the Tysoe exchange is very slim!  The phone line suggests using Home Highway which, in theory at least, provides 128kb access provided no one in the house is using the phone at the same time.  Including the BT version of 24/7 internet access (approx 150 hours per month), this costs in the region of £35 per month – about £10 more than I, at least, currently pay for the same access at a nominal 56kb rate (which in my case seems to default most of the time to a true rate of about 28kb).

As the website had no details for Tysoe exchange, I emailed the boss man at midlands BT.  He, naturally, handed the response over to his manager, who (very quickly – I was impressed) sent me the following response.

Dear Mr Adams

 You recently dropped an e-mail to my colleague, Frank Mills, concerning the provision of Broadband at Tysoe.  Frank has asked me to reply on his behalf.

 At present, Tysoe has some 43 'pre-registrations' from customers showing an interest in the Broadband service.  Currently, no trigger level is set for this exchange. To set a trigger level BT has to assess every exchange individually, as each one has different individual characteristics such as distance from our core network, space within the exchange, ventilation and air-conditioning etc. This means that the investment criteria varies from case to case and each exchange is evaluated on its own merits and cannot be compared to other towns or villages of similar size. Our current policy on registration has been developed to ensure we focus our investment in those areas which have sufficient early demand to justify it. It is worth noting that the trigger level we set is only a proportion of the total number of users we require to take-up ADSL in order for us to receive a positive return on our investment.

 It is also worth noting that our commercial model is constantly under evaluation as technology develops and our experience with 'triggered' exchanges deepens.  Thus, only last month, BT was able to announce an across the board reduction in trigger levels of 50 at every exchange where a trigger level has been set.  The other main announcement last month was that during the summer, trigger levels would be set for almost all of our remaining exchanges bar a very few very difficult cases.  I understand that this announcement is now imminent.  I'm afraid that at the moment I have no real indication of whether Tysoe will have a trigger level set.

 In order to assist communities achieve their trigger levels faster, BT has launched a champions campaign to encourage local people to get involved in stimulating demand.  Called 'Get on and Get it', I have taken the liberty of enclosing a very short briefing document that helps to explain the campaign. You may wish to consider its' application within your community.  I'd be happy to help start you off in the right direction.

 I hope I have answered your question.  However, please feel free to contact me if you wish to discuss further.

Regards, Ian Binks, Regional Manager, West Midlands, BT Retail, 

His response to my request for permission to print his letter (I am getting more careful about this sort of thing, David), was as follows:

George, (may I address you as George??)

I am glad that my reply was useful, even though probably not the answer you were hoping for!!

By all means, please publish the text in your village newspaper - it will save me having to write the same answer to the question 160 times!  We do indeed understand the frustration felt by smaller communities over the situation with Broadband - indeed the argument for any community to need broadband is equally as compelling, the difficulty arises when the commercial models are applied to any given situation.

 If you need any further help, please feel free to keep in contact.

 Regards, Ian Binks, 0121 230 2950

Mr. Binks sent me a copy of the BT ‘Get on and Get it’ handout, which aims at giving help to local campaigns to get broadband.  I can send this to anyone who wants it.  If we start such a campaign here, we would certainly need to cover the whole of the Tysoe exchange and not just Oxhill.

George Adams , 680286

Register you interest in Broadband internet access at www.bt.com.

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Last modified: January 02, 2004