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The Post Office UK Adjusts its Unlimited Broadband Package FUP to 100GB

Friday, April 27th, 2012 (7:58 am) - Score 1,559
postoffice uk broadband

The Post Office has announced that the Fair Usage Policy (FUP) on its Broadband Extra package, which claims to offer “unlimited monthly downloads“, will be changed from 1st June 2012 to impose a soft usage restriction of 100GB (GigaBytes) per month. Customers who repeatedly go beyond this will now be at risk from an unspecified reduction in their internet speeds.

The change appears designed to bring the Post Office into line with new advertising rules (here), which only allow “unlimited” style terminology to be used if the customer incurs no additional charge or suspension of service as a consequence of exceeding a usage threshold associated with a Fair Usage Policy (FUP), Traffic Management or similar policy. The ASA also expects any limitations that affect the speed or usage of a service to be moderate and clearly explained.

2.2 Key terms for PostOffice® Broadband Extra customers

If your usage exceeds 100GB in any month, we may write to you to request that you moderate your usage. If your usage subsequently exceeds 100GB in two consecutive months or for a fifth month in any 12 month period, we may contact you again asking you to moderate your usage, and warn you that we may reduce your internet access speeds, download speeds and upload speeds.

If you continue to use the Service excessively for a third consecutive month, or for a sixth month in any 12-month period, we may reduce your internet access speeds, download speeds and upload speeds.

We will contact you before reducing the speed of your Service.

In addition the Post Office has also merged its Acceptable Use Policy (AUP), which explains what customers can and cannot do online (i.e. no illegal activities etc.), into the new FUP. Happily the ISP recognises that their new measures represent a “material change” and have informed customers that they “have the right to terminate your Post Office® Broadband Extra service without incurring early termination charges“.

This is at least a much more open and honest approach than the methods adopted by some other providers, which have instead removed their FUP’s and quietly shifted other aspects, such as those related to Traffic Management, into more obscure parts of their website. Changes like that often confuse people and are not the “transparent” solution that Ofcom or the ASA would like to see.

Separately the ISPs promoted broadband services are still stuck at ‘up to 8Mbps‘ (ADSL1), which is in stark contrast to most providers that have long since moved on to offer ‘up to 14-18Mbps’ (ADSL2+) services and are now even developing superfast broadband services. At least part of the reason for this is because their service is based off a BT Managed platform, which makes it harder to adapt. Credits to Thinkbroadband for spotting the news.

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Mark Jackson
By Mark Jackson
Mark is a professional technology writer, IT consultant and computer engineer from Dorset (England), he also founded ISPreview in 1999 and enjoys analysing the latest telecoms and broadband developments. Find me on Twitter, , Facebook and Linkedin.
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5 Responses
  1. Avatar ryan

    Hi therre

    is see the new fup guide on PO is 100gb per month, and if you go over this for 3 month in a row they may reduce your speed.

    As stated above
    “The ASA also expects any limitations that affect the speed or usage of a service to be moderate and clearly explained.”

    In the new FUP it does not clearly explain the above.

    if they do impose i reduction in speed what would be classed as moderate?

    • Quite simply, nobody knows. The ASA doesn’t specify what “moderate” is so that’s open to interpretation, although it’s not technically a rule/guideline breach until somebody is actually affected.

  2. Avatar Deduction

    They are more likely to slip up by not contacting you before they reduce your speeds, the system of reducing speed will probably be automated so unless the staff stay on top of it and contact you before it happens (IE monitor and predict you are about to go over the limit). That will put them in violation of their terms.

    Technically they are already breaking the rules anyway. The package is still called unlimited yet it has a cap.

  3. Avatar Rabbit

    100G is still alot but does this mean that by changing the limit they change the contract? You buy unlimited so it isnt the same product you agreed to buy?

  4. Avatar john

    Idont know how they have the cheek to talk of 100 gig in a month. My connection worked ok for the first 4 wks, now I am using my mob isp just to surf..
    My ‘upto 8 meg’ speed is down to 3.8 off peek. on or offcheap scarf.
    peek I may get 5 mins access before being ejected. The whole deal is just stress. Engineerss have been booked and not turned up. The mickey mouse wireless kit from a cracker flashes red no internet constantly. There is no fix, no avenue of satisfaction, and the deal you wait for until your bank authority goes through unravels like a cheap scarf. These thieving scum will take your £’s and smile your bent over. Terrible.. Dont wait for 4 wl’s, just switch .

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