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Moving landline to CV21 - engineer required?

On our wavelength


My old fashioned landline broke sometime before xmas, so thought this is a good opportunity to switch to CV21.

Called up VM, spoke to a nice lady who made the arrangements to send me an adapter for the modem (Hub4) and said it would be enabled shortly, and an engineer would NOT be required.

Then I noticed that the website has booked an appointment for Feb 1st.  Called up to see if it could be enabled any quicker, and was told that Feb 1 was an engineer visit and that was the only way it could be done..

If I login to the hub 4 on (modem mode) it says telephony disabled.  Surely this can just be enabled remotely, then it should work, or is it more complicated?  I'm not convinced that the people I spoke at the call centre were technical enough to give me a valid answer, and sounded like just following a script.

I dont care about the old landline, and will even disconnect it from my house phone wiring etc.  I am OK with wiring etc, and dont need an engineer to come out and do that.

On todays call they said an engineer can only enable it onsite, but they had no idea how it worked.  So if the engineer enables it, do they login to the modem here, or what?  I'm keen to avoid an engineer visit if possible, as its too inconvenient - but if they do need to come, I'd like to understand what exactly they are expecting to do.

Any information would be gratefully received




Well yes, just about everything that you have been told was, as I’m sure you know already, a lie!

Of course this is all enabled remotely and no tech visit required, otherwise how do they explain the posts on here reporting that ‘they have been switched over to the 21CV system without their knowledge and are still awaiting an adapter?

Now actually you have hit the mail on the head, the customer services people, or ‘The Team’ as apparently they need to be referred to as, and really, no sniggering at the back; are not technical, they are offshore, third party, call centre workers, and literally, yes, their skills are just to read for a script in front of them. Which, in itself is OK, except, in the event of anyone having an issue which isn’t covered by said script, then the knee-jerk reaction does seem to lie, or make something up which might sound reasonable to the average punter, mark a ‘successfully closed call’ and move on the next mug, sorry, valued customer.

The point is that these outsourced call centres are paid by performance, how many successfully closed calls do they handle - now it doesn’t take Sherlock Holmes to see the obvious issue here. The staff are not VM employees, they are probably working for whatever passes for minimum wage in that part of the world, so surely the push is for the local bosses to, well, incentivise, the staff to close as many calls as they can, because that’s the only metric that matters and that’s the basis of them being paid!

Now, here’s an interesting experiment, let’s see if any member of the forum team, who are actual, U.K.-based VM employees and as such, are potentially and personally legally liable for what they state, care to post on here and repudiate my evaluation. Now if they do, then they risk being asked to explain the number of posts on here testifying to this really being the case, all of which can be searched for and quoted; alternatively, no member of the team will post on here, in which case the reader might want to draw their own conclusions!

Personally, I don’t think any of them will want to pop their heads up above the parapet and risking it being shot off (metaphorically speaking of course), because I can’t help thinking, that if a forum team member were to openly post something that proved to be incorrect, or indeed illegal, would the forum manager or VM themselves back them up, or alternatively would they hang said employee ‘out to dry’? Tough one isn’t it?

Forum Team
Forum Team

Hi @karls, thanks for your post here in the Community, although I'm sorry to hear of your concerns raised regarding the switchover.

For manual switchovers such as yours, that is done ahead of the usually scheduled time to be done automatically, but in customers who are manually switching over a technician must be sent for this purpose.

I appreciate this is frustrating given that you did not want the visit, but if we can be of any further assistance please don't hesitate to let us know.

Many thanks


On our wavelength


Thanks for the replies!

@Tom_W - can I ask exactly what the technician does and what access is required?  What do they physically do?

Why did the original lady I spoke to say that no technician was required?





Hi @karls thanks for your reply - you're welcome.

I'm not sure why the original lady said no technician was required. For a switchover, this is being done on mass to selected accounts across the country in a phased approach, on an automatic basis.
Specific checks are being done behind the scenes here to ensure the landlines are already ready for the switchover, by the time these customers receive the adapters in the post.

However, in your case this isn't possible as it's an manual switchover which means these checks haven't been done, and we cannot facilitate the automatic switchovers on a case-by-case basis. As you can imagine, if we did this to every single customer requesting it just wouldn't be possible to accomodate.

With this in mind, a technician visit to ensure the kit is installed correctly and your phone line is working correctly on the day, is the best and only course of action in your case.

I hope this helps and any issue on the day, please let us know!
Many thanks


On our wavelength


Thanks for that @Tom_W1

But I still don't know exactly what they will do and what access to what kit is required - it's all too vague - 'someone will turn up and do stuff.'

Checks - what checks?

There are reasons I'm asking - it's not just to be nosey, honest.  Is it possible to get some detail?

The reason for switching to CV21 was to avoid an engineer visit to repair the old broken landline.



Hi @karls thanks for your reply.

I'm sorry, but the technician visit is necessary in order to convert you to 21CV ahead of your designated automated time, if you've not been sent communications regarding this.

In terms of what the engineers will do, like all engineer visits we cannot comment on this in specific detail as it all depends on what they enounter on the day.

Your area is not yet fully set up for the migration and as such, this must be done manually. This involves the technician checking the cabinet along with your connection to confirm the switch over can be done. They will then need to call or connect to our in-house team to process the change on your account once the equipment has been installed.

This is not something that a customer can do and so a technician is required.

If your area was ready for migration and all set up already, it would be as simple as plugging in your adapter sent in the post but this is not the case, due to the manual switchover.

I hope this helps.

Many thanks


On our wavelength

Hi @Tom_W1 - thanks for the reply.

Sorry for dragging this out, I must be misunderstanding something, so please bear with me, and I'm more than happy to be corrected and educated - so thank you.

At the moment, I have two cables from VM running to the house - a coax cable for the internet, and a blue/white twisted pair cable for the old style land line.

The landline doesn't work, so the blue/white twisted pair cable isnt necessary anymore - maybe you'd want to disconnect it at the cabinet, but that wouldn't involve a visit to me.  I could disconnect it and terminate it at the house if required, either internally or externally at the junction box outside.  That shouldn't require a visit.

The CV21 phone, as I understand it is VOIP.  I think that means that it works using IP, over the internet connection.  The internet connection works fine here (> 800Mb this morning on on a rubbish computer) - if it didnt work well I'd let VM know, believe me.  So there's not really any checks there.

So the physical installation surely consists of:

1. plugging an adapter into the Hub4 (which I've already done)

2. plugging a phone into the adapter (I can probably do that, if I concentrate)

3. enabling the VOIP service at your end, so that the Hub4 says 'telephony enabled'.  (If the engineer has to phone you to enable this, he doesn't need to be here to call, right?  VM could just enable it - this is my whole point)

I understand many people like support with these things, and if there are problems they want someone to fix it, but personally - after 40+ years of IT/Nework/Telecomms experience, I'd rather call people out if support is required rather than just on the off chance that it maybe.

I'd be happy for the service to be enabled remotely, and I'll test it - I won't charge for the testing, and if it doesn't work, i'll let you know.

Have I missed something?

I'm not just being awkward for the sake of it.  The master phone socket for this installation is virtually inaccessible (it was installed 25+ years ago in the telewest days - house has changed configuration since then) - I managed to plug a phone into it for testing, but its not easy and there is no good access to it for an engineer.  If an engineer needs access to that, they wont get it.

If the engineer needs access to the Hub4, thats OK, but I'd like to understand what they need to do that I can't.

Please take this post in the spirit in which it is intended - help me if you can 🙂

Thanks again!



Hi @karls thanks for your reply.

Thanks so much for your reply - once again we are sorry about any inconvenience a visit may cause you when you are changing from our copper telephone line over to the new VOIP services. 

As mentioned earlier - your area is not quite ready for self-install/activation of the new landline. Due to this, we have to send a technician out to your property to ensure all the relevant checks are completed with your internal and external equipment. Whilst there, the technician may be requoted to contact our in-house team to process the change and run through various diagnostics. 

It's impossible to tell without a visit what maybe required and we apologise for that. However, at this stage of the migration, it would be impossible to book your switchover without a manned visit to your home. 

We cannot comment any further on the specifics of this.

Many thanks


On our wavelength

I tried...