Openreach CEO Clive Selley was put in front of the media for the second time in three months as the company battles to “get the facts out there” about the UK’s broadband infrastructure.
The company has gone on the offensive since Selley began his tenure earlier this year amid Ofcom's review of the link between Openreach and parent BT, and vocal criticism from Openreach customers Sky, TalkTalk and Vodafone.
The three rivals launched a campaign called Fix Britain’s Internet during the summer to criticise Openreach for a lack of investment in fibre, among other things.
BT and Virgin Media have responded with a campaign of their own to demonstrate that between them they have “a Europe-leading broadband infrastructure”.
When asked by European Communications whether he felt Openreach was losing the PR battle, Selley said: “I am slightly frustrated that we haven’t got the facts out. Perhaps we should have done that earlier.”
When pressed on what he thought consumers thought of his company, he said: “If you’re on our FTTH platform then you think we deliver a decent service. If you’re not then you probably feel frustrated.”
Selley used the briefing to unveil a number of new initiatives, including that FTTH tech would be deployed in all new site developments of more than 30 premises.
But there are caveats. Sites will only be considered if they are registered from November 2016 onwards, if the developers register their scheme with Openreach, and if they then contract Openreach to build the network.
The company is focusing its FTTH network, which is slated to pass two million premises by 2020, on enterprises and announced in June the six towns and cities that will get access to the tech next year.
At the same time, the company continues to sweat its copper assets, a point that rivals continue to beat it with.
Trials of long-reach VDSL technology will be extended to a number of new locations next year, Selley announced.
He revealed one of three existing trials had shown that the tech could improve download speeds by 13MBps on average.
Selley also confirmed that Huawei and Nokia are the two vendors it is working with on its “big blast” G.fast trials.
Openreach, which expects 10 million premises to have access to the technology by 2020, will roll out 17 new trials from next January.
Finally, the CEO updated journalists on improvements Openreach is making to its service commitments.
He said 82 percent of network faults were fixed on time in the three months to June, compared to 78 percent in the corresponding period last year.
Further, operator customers will now get access to updated digital maps of Openreach's infrastructure.
The maps, which are the same ones that Openreach uses, is in a bid to help them build their own fibre networks using access to Openreach’s ducts and pipes.
In his first media outing as CEO earlier this year, Selley admitted the accuracy of its own infrastructure data was “far from perfect”.