BT's New Broadband Blocked
"BT forced to stop trials of super fast broadband, because it's ugly."
Yes, you read that correctly, too ugly!
BT has been forced to stop an ongoing pilot of faster broadband in north London because of complaints from residents in the area. They say that the new roadside cabinets are ugly and too big. Haringey Council has stopped BT from installing any further equipment on the streets of Muswell Hill until they can come up with a solution to the ugly networkof 1.8 metre-tall cabinets.
Muswell Hill is the first urban area in the country to benefit from the £1.5bn plan to replace the copper wiring that usually connects the local exchanges to roadside cabinets with fibre optics. The new technology offers downstream broadband speeds of up to 40Mbit/s. BT have said that the trials have been going well, and many users were enjoying faster broadband, however, thye had received a number of complaints from residents in a conservation area.
Mike Snowdon, a spokesman for Haringey Council, said: "There were objections from a number of people and organisations, including the Conservation Area Advisory Committee. He added that as well as being significantly taller than the previous generation of roadside cabinets - which BT hasn't removed to make way - the new equipment was also "more bulky". In places, Snowdon said, people had complained that as well as being an eyesore they caused problems for buggies and wheelchair users.
A BT spokeswoman said the new cabinets had to be larger because they needed powered electronics to convert the light signals transmitted over fibre optics to electrical signals to be transmitted to and from homes, over copper. The current all-copper links from homes to cabinets, to local exchanges, don't require such powered conversion. She said: "The majority of cabinets have been successfully installed in Muswell Hill and customers are already enjoying super fast broadband. "There is an issue with a small number of cabinets in a conservation area and Openreach is in dialogue with the council on a solution."
While it works on a solution, BT said it would bring forward more pilots in either Edinburgh, Glasgow or Manchester "to provide the desired footprint as we want to learn as much as possible."
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