OTA2 Update for May 2011

At the end of May the number of unbundled lines (i.e. MPF + SMPF) installed is now at 7.56 million. Although small, this is the first monthly drop recorded in several years.

The data for the last 3 months seem to suggest that we have reached a plateau in the total number (Feb 7.59m, March 7.60m, April 7.62m) although there are differing indicators within the data, for instance fully unbundled MPF is still showing growth.

There are several factors that have an influence on these numbers and we will continue to monitor progress.
On the Telephony front there are 6.15 million WLR lines and the number of telephone numbers using CPS is 2.91 million.

General

This is a shortened format update concentrating on the KPI’s that so many people find useful. We plan to publish our next full update for the month of July and the following is an interim update on some important areas of our work:

Service Recovery

Openreach continue to manage their current resource pool in the most efficient way possible in order to reduce the very high workstack levels for provisioning and repair.
Provisioning & Repair performance (for both LLU & WLR) is now in a much better position than previously with

Openreach reporting an average of less than 10 days for copper provides and an improving situation on repairs. There are still some regional variations that have extended times but these are gradually coming down.

WLR2 Withdrawal

Following considerable dialogue with Industry and Openreach most active CP’s have transitioned their new provide process and customer base to WLR3.

As of today 98% of WLR2 assets (non BT) have been transferred. The plan is complete the outstanding base mainly by the end of June. However there is still a very small group which are proving difficult to complete. Openreach will be holding a review with the OTA to establish how best to deal with the handful of non responsive CP’s. Overall the WLR2 programme closure has been a good success

Passive Infrastructure Access

PIA has been a very active area since the draft reference offer was published. There is considerable interest from quite a diverse group of CPs. The activities to get from the draft to a full offer have split into two groupings, trial and the industry working groups.

The trial is steadily developing with a number of CPs working through the process of establishment for the product. The aim of the trial is to test the suitability of the processes and to test some of the assumptions Openreach have made. The CPs are looking to test the viability of the product and assess the chances of a scale deployment

The industry Working Group is busily working through the details of the offer and a sub group is sorting out the contractual terms.

There are a number of challenges for both the CPs and Openreach with price, usage restrictions and contractual terms under significant scrutiny.

Strategic Review of Consumer Switching

OTA2 have been facilitating bi-weekly Switching Working Group (SWG) workshops with stakeholders over the period Nov’10 to May’11. Overall progress to date has been good with effective engagement maintained across a wide spectrum of industry stakeholders. Three ‘candidate’ solutions have been developed and costings have been submitted to Ofcom to enable full cost-benefit analysis.

A high-level ‘big-picture’ roadmap (3-yrs) has been produced and shared with Stakeholders in response to stakeholders repeated requests for clarity regarding how the current activity which is limited to the ‘copper’ network may be developed to accommodate the need for consumers to seamlessly migrate services across other access infrastructures (e.g. Cable, Fibre, etc).

OTA2 continue to drive the following Major Programmes on behalf of Industry & Ofcom:-

  • Switching Working Group (SWG) in support of Ofcom’s current Consultation - Strategic Review of Consumer Switching
  • Minimum Security Standards – Ofcom guidance on the security implications of the revised Communications Act has been published and is available on the Ofcom website. This references the Minimum Security Standard as demonstrating compliance.
  • VULA – All inputs have now been received from CP’s which overall has been very limited. A review with Openreach is now being set up to consider any impact on their product roadmap. In the event that substantive issues are raised by Openreach these would be presented back to Ofcom. At this moment in time none are envisaged .The main interest from CP’s extends beyond VULA and into the future of ‘wires only’



Rod Smith