ISPreview - IDnet UK ISP Interview 2008
IDnet UK ISP Interview 2008
By: Mark Jackson - October 13th, 2008 : Page 1 -of- 3
"We expect to be able to offer “up-to-24Mbps” service from next month"

First established in 1996, IDNet is highly regarded as being one of the most reliable Internet Service Providers in the market. It offers a wide range of residential and business services, including ADSL and SDSL broadband, web design and programming, secure web hosting and email provision.

IDNet is a small provider that has successfully managed to focus on a strong balance of price and quality. This makes its director, Simon Davies, an ideal interview candidate for questions about current and future market developments:

1. Six of the country’s largest ISPs recently agreed to a voluntary anti-piracy deal with the music and film industry. Under this agreement any customers identified as having been involved in downloading illegal music or movies would be issued with a warning to stop.

Customers that continue the activity could also face further, as yet undecided, penalties (not disconnection) for their actions. What are your thoughts on this; is it the best way to tackle the problem and how will your ISP be affected?

IDNET: In my hometown, a charming little CD shop recently closed. They cited the Supermarkets flogging CDs as lost-leaders as being a primary problem for them. And, of course, online distribution. With the popularity of MP3 players there is now a group of music consumers who simply don’t want a boxed CD any more. I also believe that most people would prefer be law-abiding (there will always be an element in society who will be happy to pirate). In my view, if the music industry were to embrace online distribution and sell music at a price that the law-abiding public were happy with then they (the public) would go that route, particularly as the quality would then be assured.

2. BT has finally begun the slow rollout of ‘up to’ 24Mbps broadband ADSL2+ (Wholesale Broadband Connect) services, though it could still be some months before a larger number of ISPs are able to deploy consumer products based off this new service. Is this a product you intend to adopt and what sort of challenges does it present the ISP with?

IDNET: We expect to be able to offer “up-to-24Mbps” service from next month. It doesn’t really present much of a different challenge to when ADSL Max was introduced. The main benefit for the consumer is that usage allowances will probably increase and prices may come down a bit too. ISPs will need to invest, as always, to keep capacity available but if the retail prices are sustainable then the investment should be possible.

3. There was a lot of talk between the end of 2007 and early 2008 about the impact of growing online video (IPTV) consumption upon ISPs, raising network usage levels and putting pressure on the economic models adopted by some providers. How has the situation panned out, is this still a cause for concern and if so then how can it be solved?

IDNET: The Olympics saw a huge rise in the use of the BBC iPlayer. This did cause us a bit of a problem at the time. Back then getting bandwidth online was subject to a BT lead-time of 3 months. With 21CN we will be able to turn-on more bandwidth as and when needed.

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