Openreach’s Exchange Upgrade & Migration trials: What you need to know

Openreach’s Exchange Upgrade & Migration trials: What you need to know

Simon Leather, Head of Product Development

Simon Leather, Head of Product Development

Openreach’s Exchange Upgrade & Migration trials: What you need to know

At the end of 2019 Openreach released details of stop/sell trials in two cities in the UK. In this blog, we’ll explain the what the announcements mean and how TalkTalk Business can support you.

What has Openreach announced?

Openreach is working with communication providers (CPs) like TalkTalk Business to upgrade the UK’s digital infrastructure, reducing reliance on legacy technologies, and increasingly using full fibre to deliver broadband and voice services. As part of this upgrade programme, they are withdrawing WLR services and taking an exchange-based approach to migrating to data-only FTTP and/or Single Order GEA (SOGEA and SOGfast).

The Exchange Migration Trials are a key step in this journey and will enable a focused and controlled opportunity to test and learn how best to ensure effective customer migrations. Trials will be conducted in the following separate exchange locations: FTTP exchange upgrade trial - Salisbury, Wiltshire, and a Single Order exchange upgrade trial - Mildenhall, Suffolk. The notice of the intent to initiate trials was formally given in December 2019, with a Stop-Sell for WLR and MPF-based services at premises served by FTTP and/or SOGEA respectively from Dec 2020, and a target end date of December 2022.

The trials are important because they enable Openreach with partners such TTB to test the best approach to migrating end customers, to understand the supporting processes needed, an appropriate communications approach, identify edge cases and required remedies and understand how we operate a more focused forced migration phase as we get close to the end of 2025. Openreach is keen to work closely with Providers through the trials to ensure maximum learning can be gained and applied to the national migration programme in advance of the stop sell of related products in September 2023.

When do the trials start?

Stop sell on related products will take effect in December 2020 in Salisbury and May 2021 in Mildenhall triggered by a formal 12 months’ notice from Openreach. The trials will end in December 2022 and related products will be withdrawn in the trial areas.

How TalkTalk Business can support your business

TalkTalk Business is actively working with Openreach throughout the trials and we will pass on relevant learnings with our Partners to ensure you are fully supported. We are in the process of launching a full suite of substitute products to support you with the migrations. In addition, partner specific information and guidance is in development and will be released before April 2020. Please ask your Account Manager for further updates.