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andybundy
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Landlines, VOIP and 21CV: Urgent need for clarity

Hello

I am becoming increasingly concerned by the apparent stealth migration of existing VM landline customers over to your confusingly titled 'VOIP' service both by plan, and as a way of avoiding the cost of repairing the copper cables which have been quietly rotting away, especially in our area.

I've been trying to find out more about 21CV and what it means, but there is practically no information anyway specific to Virgin Media.

Indeed my mother was migrated as a solution to repair of her phone line, despite the fact that a Virgin engineer was the person who cut it!  She little realised that she'd no longer be able to make/receive phone calls during a power-cut for example.

Many customers also fail to appreciate that specialised devices such as community alarms, despite being fully BABT approved, will also not work (or are not fully tested).  On the other side I've seen posts on this forum of customers seeking the SIP settings having connected VOIP phones to their networks.

While I'm sure that OFCOM has relieved you of any obligations you have towards disabled and elderly people with respect to accessibility and emergency services, you still have a  moral obligation and are running the risk of 'mis-selling' where you use the phrase 'VOIP' - which for customers, it patently is not.

Please can you perhaps explain what's coming, highligh some online resource or push this question up the line (so to speak).

Thanks

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Andy Bundy
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Steven_L
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Re: Landlines, VOIP and 21CV: Urgent need for clarity

Hey @andybundy,

 

Welcome to the community and thanks for getting in touch with us here with your concerns about migrating our services from the traditional copper to via our fibre network.

 

The whole of the UK telecoms industry has committed to providing all telephone services via data connections by 2025 aligning with the governments plans for this to be completed.

 

We have a huge source of information about the change over and this can be found on the forum page here, including information about battery backups for lines during power cuts, which will be available for our elderly, vulnerable and disabled customers, to ensure that they always have a phoneline connected, so that the emergency services can be called at all times.

 

Please let me know if you have any further questions after reading the information from the forum page.

 

Regards,

Steven_L

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PBou
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Re: Landlines, VOIP and 21CV: Urgent need for clarity

Virgin Site gives NO info on how Virgin engineers will convert existing BT phone installations with extensions to Virgin Internet Phone.
booked Virgin engineer turned up today, didn't have a clue (not his fault), spent more time outside in his van phoning for help, and left.

Appears Virgin are not ensuring their engineers sent to do more complex BT installation swaps are properly trained. 

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Sofia_B
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Re: Landlines, VOIP and 21CV: Urgent need for clarity

Hi @PBou

 

Thanks for your post 🙂 

 

I'm so sorry to hear this, this is not the level of service we aim to provide and we apologise for any inconvenience caused. 

 

Did the engineer manage to convert this over before he left? If not, did he advise on if he'd get another engineer booked in for you to complete the job? 

 

Let us know, thanks!

Sofia
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PBou
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Re: Landlines, VOIP and 21CV: Urgent need for clarity

No, he didn't do the conversion because he wasn't trained and didn't understand BT installations, and didn't know what to do.

Its like sending a plumber to do an electrical installation.


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Sofia_B
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Re: Landlines, VOIP and 21CV: Urgent need for clarity

I'm so sorry to hear that @PBou

 

I'm going to send you a PM so we can look into things and get this sorted for you. 

 

Please look out for a notification in the purple envelope located in the top right hand corner of your screen. 

 

Thanks, 

Sofia
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andybundy
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Re: Landlines, VOIP and 21CV: Urgent need for clarity

Thanks for that.  It is a wealth of information, though a pity that it was not better indexed for search purposes...

That being said, there are some gaps in the information.

Firstly, as a user of telecare services, how can I be reassured as to what devices and services have been properly tested with Virgin's version of Future Voice (as opposed to Openreach's).  I presume they have similar characteristics, but as the underlying technology is quite different - I am hesitant to take too many chances.

Secondly, there is no clear information on criteria for the 'emergency backup line' and how to apply.  Remembering the nightmare in getting properly registered for priority fault repair I would wish to know how soon to start filling in endless forms....

A significant number of disabled customers will need a greater deal of support to get through the migration without problems, and this will be potentially a stressful time for many of us.  Will VM be taking a proactive role to identify affected customers (for example through priority fault repair registration, or free 192 service) and to provide enhanced support throughout the migration?

In order to avoid accusations of discrimination, a service provider is required under the Equality Act (2010) to make reasonable adjustments to their services to ensure that their is no risk of direct or indirect discrimination being experienced by disabled customers.  Simply making alternative services available is not enough, it is import to ensure that all customers are aware of their potential need to apply for them.

The changes that are coming are not simple or straightforward, and the potential for problems is not trivial.  I actually work for a telephone company and still don't quite grasp what changes I'll need to take, and what I'll need to ask for.  If I'm still asking questions, it is quite likely that many other disabled people will struggle, or not even realise.

Direct or indirect discrimination is illegal in these circumstances under the Equality Act (2010) and could well see service providers facing legal action.

I look forward to your response on this matter.

If my answer helped you, please mark it appropriately. It's always nice to be appreciated.
Stay Safe. Stay Healthy.
Andy Bundy
Remember: the answer I give is only as good as the question asked. The more relevant information you give, the better the answer you'll receive.
BradleyStaff
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Re: Landlines, VOIP and 21CV: Urgent need for clarity

Hi Andy, did your install issues get sorted as I too am disabled and have Telecare services which I depend on.

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Tom_W1
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Re: Landlines, VOIP and 21CV: Urgent need for clarity

Hi @BradleyStaff thanks for your post here in the community. 

Are there any concerns you've got about your landline and if so, please provide further detail where I'll do my best to help?

Many thanks

Tom_W
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BradleyStaff
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Re: Landlines, VOIP and 21CV: Urgent need for clarity

Hi Tom. I have a telecare system currently connected to my virgin phone line, that connects through the old BT cables in the house, along with this I  have a pendant that I wear 24/7 due to my disability. This enables me to summon help should I  fall. If the new virgin system relies on power to the modem will this not stop my telecare system working?

Also will the modem need to be resited?

 

Many thanks.

 

Bradley

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