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UK ISP BT to Raise Broadband, Phone and TV Prices from 2nd April 2017

Friday, January 20th, 2017 (2:31 pm) - Score 4,420

The consumer division of BT has today announced that their retail broadband, phone and TV subscribers will soon be hit by yet another round of price rises from 2nd April 2017, which will result in some people paying several pounds extra per month.

The last major price rise announcement from BT was made on 29th April 2016, which became effective from 3rd July 2016 and resulted in customers paying an extra +£1 per month for standard line rental, as well as various increases to the cost of calling (here).

Since then all of the major ISPs have been forced to combine the cost of line rental and broadband (this occurred at the end of October 2016), which may also be impacting today’s announcement even though BT claims that the cost of phone line rental has been frozen at £18.99 per month.

The changes mean that the base price of BT’s standard copper line (up to 17Mbps ADSL) broadband packages will increase by +£2 per month, while their FTTC/P based superfast broadband BTInfinity services will go up by +£2.50 per month (typical increases of 5-6% across the bundle) and BT TV customers also have to pay +£3.50 a month for BTSport from 1st August 2017 (NOTE: BTSport for non-BT customers on Sky will see a +£1 rise).

Meanwhile those with an Anytime UK calls plan can expect to pay an extra +49p per month, while Evening and Weekend plans will go up by +30p. Elsewhere there’s also a +1p rise on the per minute cost of calling (i.e. outside of any free allowances), the call set-up fee will rise by +2p and most individual calling features will also increase by +25p.

John Petter, CEO of BT Consumer, said:

“Customers will get a better package and improved service from us this year in exchange for paying a little more. Millions will have the chance to upgrade to faster broadband and almost a million will be able to upgrade to enjoy unlimited usage for no extra cost.

As usual, we’ve taken care of low income customers by freezing the price of BT Basic and capping call costs. We’ve also frozen line rental, which will particularly help customers who only take a traditional phone service from us.”

The freeze on line rental is welcome, albeit somewhat of a moot point now that the cost of broadband and line rental is being combined by default (Ofcom are currently investigating line rental rises). Furthermore BT appears to be doing all of this much earlier in the year than we’ve come to expect. Before 2016 we’d normally see BT announcing their major hikes towards the middle or end of summer, but last year it became April and this year it’s January.

As for why BT’s prices are rising. One reason is because we’re all gobbling much more data than before and BT has to compensate for the flexibility of those “unlimited” usage allowances somewhere. The rate of inflation has also been rising over the past few months and recently hit 1.6% in December 2016, although BT can’t really use that as an excuse because it didn’t appear to have much impact on their historic increases.

However most of the largest ISPs are under pressure to adopt all sorts of new rules and regulations, such as the system for sending millions of warning emails (“subscriber alerts“) when Internet copyright infringement is detected (here), as well as moving customer support back to the UK (90% of BT’s customers’ calls will be answered in the UK and Ireland by Spring 2017), adding more premium TV / sport content and not to mention the new Internet snooping measures (here).

In today’s announcement BT has also pledged to reveal details of its new automatic compensation system for broadband / telecoms faults (expected to launch later in 2017), which is another big cost for ISPs to consider and Ofcom are proposing to implement this requirement industry-wide (here). None of these things are easy or cheap and sometimes the costs have to be passed on to end-users.

As usual Ofcom’s rule against mid-contract price hikes mean that today’s announcement may allow some customers to exit their contract penalty free (you need to do this within 30 days of the notification), but remember that other ISPs will be increasing their prices too.

UPDATE 2:46pm

BT also informs that customers who have BT Broadband and watch BTSport via their Sky satellite service will see an increase of £1.50 to £7.50 a month from 2nd April. Elsewhere BT TV prices (excluding BTSport) have been frozen.

The operator also reminded us that their new Call Protect service is now available free to BT customers to offer a defence against nuisance calls. This service can divert up to 30 million unwanted calls a week via the BT blacklist, customers’ own blacklists and the diverts they set up to deal with certain unwanted categories of calls, like international or withheld numbers.

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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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44 Responses
  1. James Peters says:

    Does this apply to customers who are already in contract with BT ? – If so, I assume this allows the customer to leave BT mid-contract without penalty ?

    1. rage says:


    2. James Peters says:

      How about for those who have prepaid their line rental. Are they able to get the unused portion of that back as BT says not….

    3. DTMark says:


  2. Declan M says:

    Thinking of shifting to SSE Broadband anyone here with them just trying to find out what theyre router is like and that a bit limited to providers here on a market 1 exchange with basically only (BT Plusnet) post office and SSE Telecoms but no sky or talk talk or virgin the joys of living in a quite small village

    1. James Peters says:

      I left SSE last year mid contract due to all sorts of problems with them. You may want to check out and ask on the SSE forums – http://www.discussisp.com

    2. Glyn says:

      You can use your old Bt Home Hub 5 with any new ISP

    3. paul says:

      me mam and nanna are on sse and have had no bother what so ever there router is a bit big but okay

    4. mrpops2ko says:

      I used them for a bit, they use the daisy network for administration.

      It is terrible in my opinion for power users. I did some throughput diagnosis to work it out, but I couldn’t be 100% sure.

      Basically they throttle during peak times on a per connection basis if you actively use your connection but they maintain a whitelist of sites that don’t count towards this limitation.

      The end result is that the average light user probably won’t know. The power users will. The per connection basis ended up whilst using P2P of starving IRC of connections and disconnecting me from that. Very poor implementation in my opinion.

  3. Apolloa says:

    Hmm… my contracts up in March. Had to go with BT because when my cab went live for Fibre no one else had it and I didn’t want to lose my spot..
    Who should I switch to? Not going to pay £50 a month for AAISP and I need unlimited. Plusnet or Sky? Who’s better? Or anyone else that costs £30 a month? Hmm I could go unlimited Fibre and evening and weekend calls.

    1. Peter Taylor says:

      Plusnet are offering their unlimited 80/20 service & line rental for only £28 per month for the next few days!

    2. Nick says:

      I went for NOWTV. Basically you get pay-monthly Sky broadband. For ~£37/mo I got the 80/20 service + the Entertainment pass and no 18 month contract. The moment Virgin comes to my street I’m free to cancel the service and change providers.

    3. Apolloa says:

      Plusnet are out. Had a look and as I can only get 33mbps on my line they see still refusing to sell the faster broadband package to lines that can’t support it, and I refuse to have a capped 2mbps upload speed on Fibre!
      With the Now TV option doesn’t that mean your locked into using Sky’s equipment? Unless you hack it to get your username and password.

    4. Rog says:


      I would test the VM service first for 14 days. You might want to return if it’s congested in your area – don’t be fooled by the headline speeds.

  4. Rich says:

    I guess today is a day to bury bad news. Scumbag BT.

  5. Robert Scriven says:

    “Customers will get a better package and improved service from us this year in exchange for paying a little more”

    A better package?? improved service??? no, i will still get 15 down and 0.7 up on fttc !!! it just keeps going up and up and up.

    We are paying for the silly tv deal you made with the premier league.

    If i could get gfast, then fair enough, but no. You are sticking it in the cabs and not on poles.

    They darent increase line rental any more, the udders would drop off the cow!
    BT/Openreach, same thing. Time they were split up.

  6. Webbs says:

    Excellent news, I now have a means to leave BT early before contract is up in April.

    1. Rog says:

      You might save a few weeks, but that’s it. You have to wait till 2nd March to get the e-mail and then 30 days notice.

      For me it’s like ” wow call protect” to protect me from a Landline I DON’T USE ANYWAY

      Clowns. As a landline is essential (as no virgin here) then it’s time to look around. I see a few no contract providers who do line rental for a pitance.

  7. Darren says:

    I won’t be paying anymore for my broadband I will be leaving bt this is far to expensive why don’t they drop there prices your not even getting the speed were promised

    1. aslam says:

      Exactly the speed is a farce that’s why they say upto crap

    2. Rog says:

      I agree, might be time to look around for a free for 12 months ADSL package. Sod it

  8. Enki says:

    Maybe some of rises cover the cost of implementing the snoopers charter?

  9. tonyp says:

    I’m confused by some of the above text viz:-

    ‘Since then all of the major ISPs have been forced to combine the cost of line rental and broadband (this occurred at the end of October 2016), ……’

    Since, historically, I have a conventional phone line (POTS) from BT and Internet service only from another supplier, does this mean I will be expected to pay twice for internet facilities? Or twice for line rental? Hmmmm……. There is no advantage for me in doing things differently. At least while there is no prospect of at least FTTC.

    1. Rog says:

      No, you pay BT for line rental and your ISP for their service.

  10. aslam says:

    here we go again with the ripoff BT and there line rental fiasco ripoff Britain

    1. Peter says:

      You should have been around in the 1920’s!
      Line rental was charged according to distance from the exchange – and those a long distance way paid a great deal of money indeed to service/maintain their long lines.
      Line rental now is quite cheap by comparison to what it might have been if you take those 1920 base prices (for short lines!)and adjust for inflation.

    2. paul says:

      no body cares about the 1920’s

  11. Kits says:

    The whole thing about increasing prices is only BT retail the wholesale prices are not changing. IOver the last 5 years BT has increased the line rental every year yet mine with a smaller company never increased once, plus it is monthly contract so no rehashing deals every year for the next 12 months.

    As for BB BT system bands lines that start to have problems so FTTC speeds also start to drop. Have a friend who pays for 80/20 and on BT speedtest they now show as40/20 profile. To get the profile reset BT say engineer visit to cab so if no fault found they charge. OFCOM needs tom address BT’s system and get them to fix problems that make banding on the lines. To add insult this speed is also updatged on the DSL checker so they come back saying that is all the line can handle before finding the fault and fixing it, Downstream is from exchange so BT’s line fault regardless of how they set the equipment to work on faults. Loud crackling on line at times but according to BT no fault on line. Go figure that is how they milk customers dry engineer charges need to be scrapped and make BT accountable to maintain the lines.

  12. Webbs says:

    So can I leave now mid-contract without penalty, or have I got to wait for a letter detailing the price rises from BT to arrive at my home or something?

    1. James Peters says:

      I think the fact they have published it on their website is their notification to you also and can therefore contact them now.


    2. Webbs says:

      Ah nice, thank you.

    3. Rog says:

      Not sure that’s good enough – but if someone tries it and gets lucky then let us know please?

  13. Rog says:

    Well actually I did manage to get through on live chat and I have given notice. My contract was ending in June anyway. There is a live chat just for the price rises, which is good as the last time I tried live chat for anything else I gave up after 3 hours of waiting for someone (not kidding)

    This is the link btw https://bt.custhelp.com/app/contact/c/5657/session/L2F2LzEvdGltZS8xNDg1MDg3OTM1L3NpZC96UlNNQmo5bg%3D%3D

    1. James Peters says:

      Did they offer you anything as an incentive to stay with them ?

    2. Webbs says:

      @James Peters

      They did for me, along with several remarks that “other providers will be putting up price too y’know” etc. I don’t recall the specifics, I’m done with BT so didn’t pay too much attention to what they were saying to be honest.

    3. Paul B says:

      Just cancelled too – thanks for the link Rog.

      Live chat put me through to a lovely Irish person in the cancellations team, who accepted my cancellation straight-away and didn’t try to push any offers on me. So, on to my next provider.

    4. Rog says:

      You guys are welcome. i am glad they sorted out all out to what you wanted (leave or stay)

  14. Rog says:

    Sky are next 🙁

    1. Paul B says:

      Virgin Media for me (it’s pretty good in my area).

    2. Rog says:

      They are rising their prices again soon too.

  15. GNewton says:

    Noticed the absence of all the hardcore BT fans on here this forum thread?

    1. Rog says:

      I was a hardcore BT fan, but enough is enough.

  16. fastman says:

    the days of roc bottom price broadband look to be coming to an end — and that will be the same foe all providers

  17. Rowley says:

    I tried the above link but they told me I had to wait until my email had arrived. (stalling tactics I think) They said it would arrive between 27th Jan and 1st March which is a rather large window I think.
    Anyone else had luck without the email?

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