Superfastessex is part of a national programme which aims to see fibre broadband available to 95% of properties in Essex by the end of 2019.
Information on the Superfastessex programme is available on the Superfast website http://www.superfastessex.org
There is an interactive map on the Superfast website which shows the broadband status of every household in Wix.
If you look at the interactive map you will see a great big pop up disclaimer infoming you that dates and information are subject to change.
Anybody who has been following the status of this map will have observed that recently there has been a change, in that the fibre upgrade outlined to be delivered to Wix between Jan 2017 and June 2017 has now been amended to March 2018.
I asked the team at Superfast Essex to comment on why this has happened and their response is as below:
Dear Mrs Mitchell,
Thank you for your email and please accept my apologies for the delay in responding to you; we are currently receiving a high volume of enquiries.
BT's timescales have had to shift to incorporate additional cabinets to be delivered within a similar time-frame. This is to allow for the most efficient use of resources, i.e. building cabinets nearby to each other around the same time, hence why some dates have had to change. I appreciate this may be disappointing but due to the technical nature of the programme, the rollout is always subject to change for a number of different reasons. The timescale changes have occurred across the whole Superfast Essex programme and we have additional information available on our website that explains it in detail.
Wix has been included in the current BT delivery, Phase 2 of the programme's rollout. Superfast Essex is given a six month view of the cabinets due to be upgraded and beyond this is provided with early estimated dates. If work is not confirmed to be completed in the next six months, the map will reflect that the work is due for completion by December 2019 (the projected end date for the current Phase 2 rollout) and provide an estimated delivery date for guidance. It will then be updated to provide the six month rolling view once known.
The current estimated delivery date for upgrading broadband in Wix is March 2018. We will continue to update our website's interactive map with the latest information we have available, including the six month rolling timescales. The six month timescales are taken from reports received from BT Openreach after detailed surveys have been completed and we know the work and timescales are unlikely to change.
The fibre upgrade planned by Superfast Essex in Wix will be slightly different to a regular Fibre to the Cabinet upgrade and requires an alternative method needing to be used in order to install superfast speeds. This often entails copper rearrangement and may involve a new cabinet being built, becoming connected to a different existing cabinet or Fibre to the Premises. We do not always know in the planning stages what type of connection BT will be using as it will depend on further surveys, detailed costs analysis and is subject to change.
I hope this helps to clarify the current position. If you would like to contact Superfast Essex again, you can reach us via our website contact form.
Superfast Essex Team
So now you know…
I've been to a few meetings with regard to Superfast broadband and broadband in general in Wix and have put together some Q and A, which is a summary of most of the questions that I get asked.
Why is broadband so bad in Wix?
We have an old exchange, and basically demand is now much more than the exchange can cope with. this is why sometimes the service seems ok (3am is a good time to surf the internet I find!), and why it tends to grind to a halt at busy times like evenings and weekends.
Will we EVER get better broadband in Wix?
Yes, a number of properties in Wix have been earmarked for fibre. This now has en estimated availability date of March 2018.
Are all properties in Wix going to be able to get fibre broadband when it becomes available?
No, unfortunately not. You can check the status of individual addresses on the interactive map on the SuperfastEssex website. Broadly speaking, hones on Harwich Road and Clacton Road will be able to get fibre broadband, homes on Colchester Road and Oakley Road won't, and Bradfied Road appears to be a mixture. Please check the map for individual property statuses though as there are exceptions.
Why isn't every property in Wix going to be able to get fibre?
I haven't been able to get a clear answer from SuperfastEssex/Openreach to this question. However, a wireless broadband provider, County Broadband, is claiming to be able to delivery superfast broadband to exactly those addresses that are not in line for the immediate fibre upgrade. You can find information about County Broadband on their website www.countybroadband.co.uk
Is the County Broadband Service any good?
If anybody is using County Broadband, I would be very interested to hear from you and your experience of their service. The benefits of using a wireless broadband provider is that you don't need to have a telephone line installed. If you are like me and don't use your home phone line for anything other than broadband then that will save you £20 per month rental. Another positive for wireless broadband is that it it s synchronous service in that upload speeds match download speeds, this can be beneficial if you upload a lot of data (maybe photos etc) or use video conferencing like skype or facetime.
The downside to wireless broadband is that there tend to be fixed limits on how much data you can use each month. If you tend to just use broadband for surfing the internet, or using email, then this won't be too much of a problem. If, however, you want to stream video or tv (youtube, netflix, amazon prime etc) then a fixed data connection won't be any good for you.
What will happen to the users left on the Wix Exchange when fibre becomes available?
If a reasonable number of people in Wix order Fibre when it arrives, this should lesson the demand on the Wix Exchange and hopefully improve the service of the households that remain connected to it.
Will I automatically get upgraded to fibre when it arrives?
No, you will need to order fibre broadband. In addition to your regular telephone rental, BT fibre costs an additional £35-£45 per month depending on which connection speed you require. An upgrade to a fibre service will require a new router and an engineer visit to set up.
Are there any other options for connectivity in wix?
Many parts of Wix have excellent 3G and 4G coverage from EE. You can use a mobile broadband router from EE to provide very fast internet coverage, however, it is data limited. I have one of these which I use as a back up when the Wix internet is really slow. Currently I am able to get 83Mbps download speed and 40Mbps upload speed, and I pay £20 per month for 15GB data.