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AAISP’s Etherway super business fibre gets a rocky start with BT

The first UK trial of a no-contention unlimited fibre broadband for business has ground to a halt after BT Openreach turned a seven-hour repair promise into a four-day wait.

Business ISP Andrews & Arnold ( is the first broadband provider to connect a customer to an FTTC Etherway service.

Etherway combines a traditional leased line all-you-can-eat Ethernet connection with high reliability, with the faster, cheaper installation and low running costs of fibre-to-the-cabinet.

Ethernet explained by AAISP

Blogging as RevK, Adrian Kennard, director of Andrews & Arnold, said Etherway will also be able to run at FTTP speeds as BT rolls this out across the UK.

“Mostly Ethernet services are long lead time and expensive,” he added. “Often they involve digging and extra cost. But FTTC is a new way to connect at the end user and quicker, cheaper, and simpler.

“This is an exciting new service that should appeal to business customers. It combines the simplicity, high reliability and performance of national Ethernet services with the low cost and lead time of fibre-to-the-cabinet services used for broadband. This offers the best of both worlds.”

A typical service costs £190/month plus VAT for a synchronous guaranteed 2Mbps with burst speeds of up to 10Mbps, although each quote depends on the customer’s location inside BT’s national network.

With FTTC the service can run at up to 80Mbps, and AAISP also connects customers to two separate data centres for extra reliability, with dual router functioning so no packets are lost if they’re doing any router maintenance.

Unfortunately, the trial installation has hit technical issues which BT Openreach couldn’t fix within its seven-hour promise, and wasn’t fixed for four days.

Adrian said: “The compensation is 15 per cent of month’s rental per hour, or part, after that, limited to 100 per cent of a month’s rental. That means after 13 hours and a second they have used up the 100 per cent month’s rental.

“So fix in seven hours, or if they take more than 13 hours they have an incentive *not* to fix the fault. At the very very least one should not have to pay the rental while it is not fixed. After all, we have a fault on over four days fix now – we are paying BT for a broken service now, not even breaking even. Madness.”

UPDATE 11/7/2012: Adrian Kennard reports that the service is up and running.

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