ISPreview - Entanet Interview
Entanet Interview
By: Mark Jackson - Nov 5th 2007 : Page 2 -of- 2
"it still costs me (as an ISP) 30 times more to move data from the end user to my network as it does to get the same data to Australia"

4. Fibre (FTTx) broadband technology has been a popular talking point of 2007, with many claiming that the UK risks falling behind other countries unless we replace our ageing copper wire based networks to keep up with global competition and bandwidth requirements.

BT has naturally expressed concern over the cost and is continuing its focus on existing infrastructure up to ADSL2+, though they do have some limited fibre trials. What do you think should happen?

We would like to see ADSL2+ rolled out nationally BUT for Greenfield sites the default option should become FTTP. Once ADSL2+ has been rolled out completely there should be a planned upgrade to FTTK and the next generation of VDSL.

Saying all this is good, but for it to work BT/Ofcom need to re-evaluate how costs are apportioned and ROI calculated. Even with the recent reduction in the bandwidth costs on IPStream it still costs me (as an ISP) 30 times more to move data from the end user to my network as it does to get the same data to Australia.

5. BT are currently preparing to launch their ‘up to’ 24Mbps broadband ADSL2+ services sometime next year. What kind of impact, in terms of network usage and package prices, do you expect this to have?

As one of the 3 CP's trialling this we'll be able to give you more information on the impact sometime in December :). From our point of view we are looking to keep the product set the same but changing the underlying service to a ADSL2+ service.

6. Over the past 24 months we’ve seen an aggressive level of market consolidation, which has spawned several giant providers. What kind of impact, if any, has this had on your own ISP and the wider market?

It hasn't finished yet, there are probably 4 or 5 major M&A events still to happen in the next 12 months. Once these have completed I would expect there to 3 or 4 dominant ISPs and then a layer of smaller 'niche' ISPs.

7. Do you think the ability to offer a bundled package (broadband + line rental, TV and or mobile phone connection) is an important product for UK ISP’s to offer or can the standalone model successfully survive on its own?

In the residential market Multiplay is the way forward for the Majors, the smaller niche players can still keep providing individual services but they should be looking to offer the components of a bundle to those that want it. As a wholesaler we are building our range of products so that our customers can 'cherry pick' those components that fit their customers requirements.

8. The increasingly saturated broadband market has become a problem for many ISP’s, slowing the influx of new customers from dialup migration and fresh sources. The result has seen most movement emanating from migrations between existing broadband providers. In your opinion, what does this mean for ISP’s?

We are still seeing a 65/35 split of new/migrating customers and (according to various places) there is still a large number of people to move across. Once the number has really plateaued then the M&A activity will increase as the largest players look to make cost savings on their already deployed networks.

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