ISP Review - ISPs & The Big FRIACO Discount

ISP Review Gets ISP Feedback To The Recent 17% FRIACO Price Cut

ISPs & The BIG FRIACO Discount
By Mark 'Winter' Jackson : Aug 25th-2003 : Page 2 of 2

"another problem is the fact that operators whom do receive the discounts are under no obligation to pass the cut on to ISPs"


Another provider, V21, notes how the discount itself doesn’t apply to the whole package: “Well BT are being at bit naughty about this, the demand of discount by Oftel is to the FRIACO portion of the port only, we use a product called 'Surf Port 24' so we are being told that this is made up of a portion of FRIACO and the rest is? (who knows).

Yet another problem is the fact that operators whom do receive the discounts are under no obligation to pass the cut on to ISPs. Consequently the saving for many providers, if they get any, will be meagre by comparison to the original percentage (operators will want to keep some savings for themselves).

The Good News

Thankfully most of the providers we talked to were still keen on using any such savings, should they ever arrive, on service improvements and possibly price cuts.

AOL UK has already made it clear that savings would come in the form of better content and customer service. SurfAnyTime / Firefly would choose a similar rout: “If we had significantly more BT ports, I would seek to keep prices the same but pass the saving onto the customers by way of additional services or a reduced contention ratio.

Pipex’s David Richards, which wouldn’t generally be that affected by the cut anyway, comments: “I would expect unmetered prices to fall in line with ISP cost reductions from BT and also due to price pressures from adsl.

The feedback shows that changes in the ISP industry are rarely as clear cut as they may first appear. To date only one provider, Tesco.net, has, as a direct result of Oftels action, cut the cost of its unmetered dialup (by 50p). Whether or not more will follow is clearly a three dimensional issue.

Oftels Original Press Release:
http://www.oftel.gov.uk/press/releases/2003/pr44_03.htm

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