DSL Broadband needs a copper pair to work. Normally people just use a BT telephone line that is used for something else like normal telephone service or fax or credit card machine. We can provide a copper pair specially for our broadband. This is sometimes referred to as "Naked DSL" in that there is no telephone service as such, and no need to separately purchase a phone line to have the broadband service.
(Of course, we also provide services over true fibre connections which do not need a copper pair.)
We also provide a service where we can take over your phone line and port your phone line number to our VoIP service. Learn more.
We are one supplier providing the whole service. This can be helpful as accounts departments in large companies are fond of cutting off random single phone lines if they do not know what they are for. Being on the broadband bill avoids the problem. It also helps put the bill in the right budget.
Whilst the copper pair is provided for broadband only use, it is normally listed separately on the bill. The copper pair is billed from the date it is provided even if the broadband is not yet provided, and billed to the date it is ceased (or migrated) even if the broadband has already ceased. The copper pair has no minimum term. We do not generally offer copper pairs without an associated broadband service.
This also provides one point of contact for any fault with the services. This is useful as normally faults have to be classified as voice or broadband at the start and reported to the voice provider or us accordingly. Having one point of contact means we have to sort it either way.
Many people see using a copper pair for actual telephony as somewhat antiquated and would like to move the copper pair to us for broadband but move their number to Voice over IP. Normally moving a number to VoIP kills the phone line and broadband, but we can do this without a break in service. This only works where the number is originally a BT number, not ported from another provider.
When ordering broadband, or if you have broadband from us you can order a phone line take over, you are offered the option to take over the line and port the number. The process then works like this...
A good way to manage this is to get something like the Gigaset DECT phone base and handset as this can work on VoIP but still connect to the phone line to allow incoming calls on the line until the process is complete. You should remember to program it to send any 999 calls to VoIP though, and ensure you have set the 999 address details on our control pages.
In many cases we can take over an existing line or start a stopped line, but if you need a new line installed then an engineer will have to visit and complete the installation. This means we will arrange an appointment (morning or afternoon) and you need to ensure someone is there at that time (otherwise there is an abortive visit fee).
In some cases where cabling in to, or inside, your premises and master socket already exists, the engineer may use these, or the engineer may install a new master socket. This is normally where the cables enter the property or somewhere convenient nearby. He may have to drill holes, fix cable anchors to walls, run internal cabling, and other similar work - so ensure you have permission of landlord if renting. You can ask the engineer to put the socket elsewhere as long as that is less than an hour's work in your property. Please ensure you agree where the socket is to go when the engineer arrives. The engineer only installs one master socket and does not install extension cabling or additional sockets. If you need a more complex installation, contact our sales team in advance, but you may find it cheaper to engage an electrician or run extension cabling yourself.
Simply order your broadband service. As part of the ordering process we will ask if you want a copper pair with your broadband and take details of where you need it.
The copper pair itself is installed by Openreach just like a BT phone line, on our behalf. No telephone service is provided on this copper pair, it is purely for broadband use, this includes calls to emergency services. Learn more.
Whilst there is no telephone service as such, the pair does have some audio when connected to a telephone - this is purely to stop any engineers thinking the pair is unused and taking it for another installation or fault repair. It also allows a quiet line test so one can hear crackles or interference that may be the cause of a fault. As such we still expect customers to have a telephone handset available for fault repair and diagnostics.
We do not normally allow any outbound calls.
Note: Phone lines are changing! We expect that lines will have no audio or tones at all at some point in the future.
Differences between Business and Residential
Residential Copper Pair:
Standard Care Level 1 - Openreach aims to clear a fault by end of next working day + 1, Monday to Friday, excluding Public Holidays and Bank Holidays.
Business Copper Pair:
Premium Care Level 2 - Openreach aims to clear a fault by end of next working day, Monday to Saturday, excluding Public Holidays and Bank Holidays.
Total Care Option:
Total Care Level 3 - Openreach aims to clear a fault Reported by 12.59 before 23.59.59 same day. Should the fault be reported after 13.00, Openreach aims to clear by 12.59.59 next day (Monday – Sunday including Public and Bank Holidays).