Optical fiber: every day hell for subscribers | EUROtoday

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” VSIt's a nameless mess. » Jean-Yves lives in La Rochelle, subscribes to SFR, he was disconnected twice in a few months and received compensation of 1.67 euros. Tired, he decides to go to Free… and goes back to the cash register, enduring two disconnections lasting several days. This former audiovisual manager is choked by the state of the street cabinets, sometimes “closed with a piece of tape”. The door opens to arbitrary disconnections, which make it possible to reconnect another customer in a waltz of subcontractors paid by the task. It is “settled like clockwork”, according to Pascal Duffner, mayor of Bretonvillers: “Paul is connected to fiber, Pierre is disconnected and no longer has service. »

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Same story with Dominique, a retired hospital director who found, upon getting back from trip, that the cable connecting him to the Internet had merely disappeared from the fiber arrival field in his home in Ruffac. Perplexed, he observed that the fiber presupposed to energy his house from the draft chamber on the nook of the road was “hanging around at the back of the chamber.”

Ordinary conditions for the a whole lot of French individuals who report Internet outages daily. However, optical fiber is progressing effectively in France, the European champion by way of deployment, with 86% of properties related and 66% of Internet subscriptions on the finish of 2023, in accordance with Arcep (Regulatory Authority for Electronic Communications, Posts and Distribution). of the press). But connection failures and premature disconnections are quite a few on the lengthy, not-so-smooth river of fiber…

(Almost) felony tales

Already irritating, these particular person tales cover extra critical, “almost criminal” ones, in accordance with Dominique. What can we are saying concerning the hospital he managed, disconnected for half a day by staff who “tampered” on the street cupboard? He regrets the “vulnerability of the system”, specifically of those collective avenue cupboards, and the shortage of traceability of subcontractors. We can, from sooner or later to the following, “find ourselves disconnected without knowing who did what”.

Mayor Pascal Duffner shares this worry that an accident will occur and that one of many 276 inhabitants of his rural city, typically aged, will be unable to name for assist as a result of lack of Internet. This has “no right to exist” for this elected official who, bored with the generally countless anticipate technicians to reach, determined to deal with the issue head on.

From now on, he asks his constituents to inform him once they request technical intervention from their operator, then takes a photograph of the truck's license plate and doesn’t hesitate, then, to submit a handrail to the gendarmerie if a disconnection ensues. If this method was in a position to bear fruit in his village – he himself “doesn't know much about it” – it’s clearly not viable on different scales.

“Everyone passes the buck”

Traceability undermined by a cascade of layers of subcontracting, “lawless” individualism of technicians who reconnect – due to this fact unplug – to return house extra shortly, late interventions on networks that they typically know little about: subcontractors -contractors are below fireplace from criticism. But these precarious technicians additionally know that they won’t be paid if they don’t reconnect their buyer…

Ariel Turpin, normal delegate of the Association of Cities and Communities for Electronic Communications and Audiovisual (Avicca), attributes this case to “fiber connections in Stoc mode”, for business operator subcontracting. This signifies that connection operations are entrusted to not the infrastructure operators who function the community (Altice, Axione, Altitude Infrastructure, and many others.), however to the business operators who entry these networks as Internet suppliers (Orange, Free , SFR and Bouygues).

READ ALSO A felony investigation opened after the sabotage of optical fibersWhat follows is a spiral of disconnections then “all the time” connections, with every operator dispatching their very own subcontractor technician to reconnect. All whereas taking kind of care of the collective community, and with out essentially the infrastructure operator being knowledgeable of the intervention: sufficient to steer, in accordance with Arcep, to a “dilution of responsibilities”.

“Everyone is passing the buck,” summarizes Thomas, who has skilled common Internet outages for the reason that finish of January and is offended on the ready time. In its seven-story constructing within the coronary heart of Paris, no resident is spared. So a lot in order that one of many residents determined, out of frustration, to chop all of the cables within the constructing. What to make operators react? Not certain…

Lack of constraint

According to Frithjof Michaelsen, digital venture supervisor at UFC-Que Choisir, the issue comes from the shortage of constraints within the commitments made by operators. Although initiatives emerge yearly, in accordance with him, they lack influence as governments are reluctant to “really act against operators”.

In order to place client rights on the coronary heart of the talk, we should “tackle the financial aspect to encourage operators to resolve the problems”. Establish automated compensation for every day of interruption, permit shoppers to pay for his or her termination freed from cost within the occasion of connection failure… “The solution is for operators to be penalized,” provides Jean-Yves, rigid.

This is the place Arcep is available in, which should be sure that the optical fiber deployment and high quality framework is revered by operators. As a regulatory authority, it asks them to take over the getting older so-called “accident-prone” networks, situated primarily in Île-de-France and Bouches-du-Rhône. Ghislain Heude, deputy director of the Fiber, Infrastructure and Territories division at Arcep, additionally highlights the launch in September 2022 of the “industry quality plan” with business operators. On this system: labeling of stakeholders in accordance with a abilities grid developed by the sector; introduction of the “e-intervention” on-line device which requires technicians to supply an in depth report with photographs and higher communication on the intervention schedule for larger traceability between operators and subcontractors.

From fiber to “noodle dishes”

Without excluding doable sanctions, Ghislain Heude chooses to “trust” the gamers within the sector. Nicolas Guérin, president of the French Telecoms Federation, assures us: after taking on the road cupboards, generally known as “noodle dishes” as a result of the cables are so tangled, the technicians pay “more attention” to the community. Several Avicca member communities, nonetheless, observe that “the lifespan of a reclaimed wardrobe before becoming a “dish of noodles” once more is round six months”.

READ ALSO Slow pace, interrupted connection…: why the Wi-Fi slows down on the practiceAlso secretary normal of Orange, Nicolas Guérin says he intently displays his subcontractors by way of the geolocation of interventions and “on the spot” management, to confirm the identification and abilities of technicians. Recognizing the existence of “quality problems”, it places ahead a failure fee of lower than 0.2% on 80% of networks – the best failure fee being 0.44%, in accordance with the community high quality observatory in optical fiber that Arcep conducts each six months. Figures which might be definitely low in proportion however which signify tens of 1000’s of households per 12 months.

Blaming the slowdown in connections since 2021 on the more and more superior deployment within the territory, Nicolas Guérin guarantees that disconnections will develop into rarer on accident-free networks, the place “the technology is reliable”. Consumers are demanding no much less, particularly because the operator additionally pronounces the gradual extinction of its copper community – a pioneer in entry to telephony and the Internet for the reason that Nineteen Sixties – by 2030 . Enough time to keep away from sinking?