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Fury as Alternative UK Fibre Networks Hit by New Openreach Fee UPDATE4

Tuesday, December 1st, 2020 (11:06 am) - Score 22,008
optical glass fibre cable threads

Openreach (BT) has generated a furious response from alternative UK broadband networks (AltNets) after they introduced a new fee on certain FTTP linked connections, which broadband ISPs have described as being “punitive” and a “blatant attempt by [the operator] to regain a monopoly” that is likely to “slow the rollout of full fibre.”

At present Openreach is facing a huge rise in competition from alternative gigabit-capable Fibre-to-the-Premises (FTTP) networks (Summary of Full Fibre Build Progress), with the Independent Networks Co-operative Association (INCA) predicting that such providers will deliver 2.42 million full fibre premises by the end of 2020, before rising to 15.73 million by the end of 2025.

The Government’s new £5bn Gigabit Broadband (F20) programme also appears set to support this progress by becoming more accessible to altnets than prior schemes, which all told may help to further erode Openreach’s traditional dominance in the market. Much of this change has been underpinned by Ofcom’s regulation and cuts to business rates, which has gradually made it easier to build altnet platforms in the UK.

Despite this there are fears that a big chunk of this good work by AltNets could now suffer a setback after Openreach shocked many such providers with their latest charge notification, which centres around “price changes for leased line circuits being used to aggregate FTTP to multiple premises” (Briefing GEN102/20).

Openreach Briefing Statement

In order to better align with what we are required to do under regulation, we are revising our pricing for leased lines (covering Ethernet and Optical products) with certain use cases.

Specifically, Openreach is not obliged under regulation to provide network access using leased lines to intermediate nodes in the fixed network, which includes to intermediate aggregation nodes in FTTP networks, as they are not part of the relevant market where we have Significant Market Power (SMP).

We are changing the pricing for leased lines that are being used to aggregate FTTP to multiple homes and business premises from aggregation nodes e.g. from a street based cabinet or similar locations with effect from 1 January 2021. From this date we will be introducing an annual supplemental charge (in addition to the standard rental and connection charges applicable) for leased line services used for this use case.

From this date we require Communications Providers (CPs) to self-certify orders for this use case by including “FTTP aggregation” in the relevant product order notes. … Openreach will periodically audit details on circuits and will seek clarification of the use case of circuits as necessary and where it is confirmed that circuits are being used for FTTP aggregation but were not self-certified at order entry, the supplementary charge will be applied from the point of confirmation, and the CP will be retrospectively charged the supplementary rental back to the date of provision, for orders placed from 1 January 2021.

The “supplemental annual rental” increase ranges from £560.00 +vat on 1Gbps Ethernet (e.g. EAD) products and goes all the way up to £11,060.00 for certain other optical spectrum (OSA / OSEA) products. Essentially, AltNets view this “punitive fee” as making things difficult (much more expensive) for ISPs who want to use Openreach’s products to build competitive FTTP networks.

The change will initially have the biggest impact on EAD users, but it will also apply to many of Openreach’s other Ethernet solutions too, including the upcoming Dark Fibre Access (DFA) product, which may risk undermining the whole point of it.

Instead the operator appears to be steering altnets toward their Physical Infrastructure Access (PIA) product, which allows ISPs to run their own fibre through existing cable ducts, but this will be seen by some as raising the barriers for the smallest players. EAD is very accessible and supplied as a fully installed and managed service, while PIA requires a lot more effort via compliance, training, labour costs etc.

Much of the feedback we’ve had about this has been off-the-record, although various providers have described the change as being “overtly aggressive,” reflective of “totally shocking behaviour,” and a “massive game changer for the UK altnet industry.”

As another operator put it, the change was done “intentionally to screw over all alternate networks who are building their own networks but have no alternative but to use the monopoly for backhaul.” We did have the odd on-the-record comment though.

A Spokesperson for Zone Broadband said:

“This is totally shocking behaviour by Openreach and will slow the rollout of Full Fibre Broadband Networks throughout the UK by Alt Net Providers. This is a blatant attempt by Openreach to regain a monopoly and make End Users wait for their own FTTP network to finally reach them, thus limiting the number of Alt Net Providers who are filling the vital gap in connectivity to the hardest to reach areas of the UK.”

Simon Green of 1310 said:

“Essentially they’re making things difficult for ISPs who want to use the OR products to build competition to OR FTTP. The 10G levy is especially egregious. They’re not blocking the use of it for CP networks with a contract change, they’re just adding on a punitive fee.

In my UKNOF talk a few weeks ago I described Openreach as a fantastic business and a huge opportunity for altnets. I’ve used Openreach for quite a long time now, and this is the first time I’ve seen them do something overtly aggressive against its customers.

Even the tone of the language on the announcement starts out in an aggressive way.”

We note that, in respect to Ethernet Access Direct (EAD) products, Openreach’s pricing is regulated by Ofcom, although some AltNets believe that the operator has found a “loophole where pricing for products that aren’t used to directly serve end-users is exempt from regulation.”

Openreach’s own briefing claims that the change is “in order to better align with what we are required to do under regulation,” although one AltNet comically suggested a different interpretation of that wording – “In order to screw over our competitors when not prohibited from doing so by regulation“.

An Openreach Spokesperson told ISPreview.co.uk:

“Openreach isn’t obliged to connect ‘intermediate nodes’ (such as street cabinets) for alternative FTTP providers, using leased lines. But if companies do want to use this route rather than building their own Full Fibre networks, we’re happy to connect street cabinets at a reasonable price.

Of course they can also use our nationwide network of ducts and poles, which Ofcom has specifically introduced for others to build Full Fibre, and is available under regulated prices, terms and conditions.”

An Ofcom Spokesperson added:

“We are aware of the concerns that have been raised and we are looking into them.”

The broad perception from AltNets is still that Openreach has made an “anti-competitive move,” which is going to make networks more expensive and that in turn could have direct cost implications for customers (i.e. higher consumer prices to compensate for increased delivery costs). Rarely have we ever seen such a sudden and large reaction to one of Openreach’s changes, which shows how seriously it’s being taken.

We contacted both Openreach and Ofcom for comment just after 7am this morning and are awaiting their responses.

UPDATE 3:26pm

Both Openreach and Ofcom have now responded above.

UPDATE 4:48pm

We’ve just had a new comment from UKWISPA, which represents over 100 operators (fixed wireless ISPs) across the UK and most of them depend to some extent on Openreach circuits.

David Burns, UKWISPA’s chairman, said:

“This is terrible news for the homes and businesses who depend on using alterative network providers for their broadband access.

Openreach have effectively added a Competition Tax aimed exclusively at their smaller competitors who will either lose money or have to sell their access services at an inflated price. It is unthinkable that Ofcom or the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport could allow Openreach to introduce such an anti-competitive levy and exploit their monopoly position.

We will be writing to Ofcom and the UK Government to intervene in this urgently and will consider a legal challenge against Openreach, but as ever when tackling a giant such as BT, it is very hard for smaller organisations to fight on level terms.”

UPDATE 2nd December 2020 – 12:27pm

Openreach has issued another statement, this time in response to UKWISPA above. A spokesperson said: “We note the comments from UKWISPA and would like to make it clear that Fixed Wireless Access (FWA) and Mobile cell site connectivity and backhaul is unaffected by this change. Openreach’s change as per its briefing specifically relates to the pricing for leased lines that are being used to aggregate Full Fibre To The Premise (FTTP) to multiple homes and business premises from aggregation nodes e.g. from a street based cabinet or similar locations with effect from 1 January 2021.”

UPDATE 4th December 2020 – 7:55am

Openreach’s new charge was mentioned during yesterday’s Commons Chamber debate on Digital Infrastructure.

Richard Thomson (SNP) said:

“In the remaining time available, let me speak up for the alternative providers known as altnets. For those who are unfamiliar with them, they are alternative internet service providers who rely on radio connections or even their own fibre to provide internet broadband services, but they rely on existing infrastructure from companies such as Openreach for the backhaul.

Openreach recently made an announcement, aimed at those particular providers, that it would be levying a supplementary charge, and it is no exaggeration to describe that charge as punitive. I would almost go so far as to say that the charges it proposes to place on the leasing of those lines could in some cases be anti-competitive, and I hope to have a conversation with the Minister about that so that we can look into it further.”

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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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47 Responses
  1. Avatar Buggerlugz says:

    Seems BT has something afoot going on, first erosion of its employee’s contracts or here’s the door, then blatant exploitation of Altnets to just top up the balance sheet a bit.

    Seems its a deliberate attempt at forcing more customers towards BT’s own FTTP products to me.

    Hopefully OFCOM can show it has teeth (and not the usual dentures soaking in Steridant approach here.)

  2. Avatar New_Londoner says:

    Assuming that Openreach can show that the proposed price increases reflect the underlying cost base of the product in question then it would be ridiculous for other network operators to expect to be subsidised. Conversely, if the charges bear no relation to the underlying costs then Openreach may be vulnerable to action under the UK Competition Act for anti-competitive behaviour.

    1. Avatar - says:

      They can’t. How can they? It’s a lit piece of fibre in the ground between two buildings or to the nearest exchange. The idea of the cost changing because someone is using it as backhaul for FTTP users, as a pose to for a business HQ, Mobile Mast, or WISP when there is no traffic/usage based element to a Layer 1 service is ludicrous. It’s bad enough the difference between 1G and 10G EADs which is not cost based (on rental at least), but this is open monopolistic racketeering (in my personal opinion as always).

    2. Avatar MikeP says:

      It’s quite clearly – and explicitly stated in their announcement – that this not a cost-based price increase at all.

      It purely based on the use that the customer makes of the link. Which for a wholesale service product is on the face of it ant-competitive,

  3. Avatar - says:

    ‘intentionally to screw over all alternate networks who are building their own networks but have no alternative but to use the monopoly for backhaul’

    This comment is 100% on point. Ofcom are asleep at the wheel here, as ever, and openreach have brazenly taken advantage.

  4. Avatar Jonny says:

    I don’t agree with the price rise as the point of EAD is surely that you’re paying for a link and can do what you want with it, but I’m also not sure how accurate it is to call something an AltNet if the business is reliant on Openreach EAD.

    1. Avatar Simon says:

      This applies to DFA and OSA as well as EAD. And in all cases they’re supposed to be a transparent point to point service. Networks have to buy their fibre in the ground from somewhere, Openreach is supposed to be one of those potential sources.

    2. Avatar - says:

      It’s not even just that ‘Openreach is supposed to be one of those potential sources’ they are the *ONLY* source in a huge majority of cases when I’m looking at a rural area. In some places there is no ‘non BT’ fibre for 70KM or more. What are alt-nets supposed to do? Dig (or install in BT duct, while probably paying or at least waiting to get them cleared/rebuilt too) 70KM+ of fibre in order to get to this non BT fibre? This would make a project well over £10-20K+ per premise passed, completely beyond the bounds of any commercial or even subsidised project.

      If I had a choice to buy from literally anyone other than openreach, trust me, we would take that route. The reality is we need to take maybe a 10Gbps EAD (or multiple) to a wholesale provider who has a POP in a nearby exchange and then buy backhaul onwards from them. Otherwise we may look at an OSA service if we need to cover further distance. These now have roughly a 100% ‘surcharge’ on annual rental (not including the main link element).

      It’s anti competitive plain and simple (in my personal view).

  5. Avatar Pezza says:

    Blatant money grab by Open Reach and ergo BT, and an attempt to stifle competition. These practices were the entire reason they should have been penalised and totally split, not the token effort OFCOM agreed to.
    Acts like these just place any prospects of FTTC connections going full fibre even further down the road..

  6. Avatar GNewton says:

    This is only part of a wider failure of the fibre deployment strategy in the UK.

    Ofcom has failed to split up BT, Openreach is still wholly owned by BT Group.

    ASA has failed in its job, too many people still believe that VDSL is fibre broadband.

    BT is more than a decade too late with regards to widespread fibre deployment. It still suffers from a Can’t Do culture inherited from past monopoly times.

    And there has been no creditable policy framework for getting widely available rural fibre done. Gigabit broadband for all by 2025? It’s not going to happen.

    1. Avatar James Band says:

      Fully agreed.

      Should have split up Openreach and BT in the same manner the “Standard Oil” monopoly was broken up in the US.

      It should also be illegal to market VDSL as “Fibre”. In addition, the bare minimum speed for a “Superfast” description in the era of Gigabit broadband, should be at least 500Mbps and “Fast” as 300Mbps. “Ultrafast” should be 900Mbps or above. At present, many FTTC products which are well well below 100Mbps are labelled and marketed as superfast.

      The pricing of FTTP seems ridiculous. The only “big” ISP via Openreach nationwide thus far is BT whose price is way higher than Vodafone (via Cityfibre) and both are significantly higher than the likes of Singapore, or South Korea, or other players on the European continent.

      If we want 100% FTTP by 2025, only the threat of allowing the likes of Google, or anyone to build a Full Fibre network anywhere and offer zero protection to the likes of BT Openreach, Cityfibre etc will light a fire under their backside. If you just mandate by law that everywhere must have FTTP in x number of years, any fibre builder will work out a way to make a profit once the deadline has been set in stone.

      Alternatively, hive off Openreach from BT, encourage a merger between them and Cityfibre, Gigaclear etc and have this new “National” (but private) company put out tenders to upgrade each area (e.g. counties) of the country via a competitive process with the deadline of 2024. Make the ISPs mere renters of a Fibre network just like UK Powernetworks. It seems very poor planning to have overbuilding in areas – especially cities – and no fibre at all in rural parts of the country. London isn’t the UK. Nor frankly is London’s infrastructure remotely comparable to Singapore’s at present.

  7. Avatar Guy Cashmore says:

    Same old, same old from BT group. They must employ teams of people who’s sole job is to think up new methods of increasing revenue from existing customers.

    1. Avatar Go Faster Jeff says:

      Businesses employing people with the sole responsibility of growing revenue- whatever next!

    2. Avatar Alex says:

      I’ve never seen a more laughable statement on here.

  8. Avatar brooks says:

    It would appear, they have only just realised that people will switch from fttc to alt nets and they want a slice of the pie without investing. I hope ofcom shoots them down and makes the fee for all ead’s

  9. Avatar Phil says:

    It’s probably worth stating the obvious that in most cases where these AltNet services are being built and deployed is because Openreach haven’t bothered to get *any* decent broadband there yet (though they mysteriously have a habit of turning up to overbuild the moment an altnet pays for enabling works and starts to get established) but they clearly would still like a slice of the pie for work they haven’t done. A reverse Market A, if you will, for they are so poor and weak they need extra commercial space to compete with the mean AltNets.

    Perhaps they think they are entitled to charge for the “opportunity cost” of losing out on additional EAD circuit sales in poorly served areas where altnets are aggregating customers *and spend* in order to fund a single EAD. What they miss is that without that aggregation there *is no viable market to sell EADs to*, otherwise they would have already been asked to install them.

    I should be interested to see someone try to explain how what is on the end of a bit of fibre changes whether or not Openreach has SMP in actually delivering that fibre (which is surely the relevant measure), especially as in large swathes of the country it’s Openreach tails no matter who you order a leased line from, which somewhat undermines one of their rather laughable suggested alternatives to “use another provider”.

    It is also somewhat striking the way it focuses specifically on FTTP. If we used CAT6 to enter the customer premise inside a block of flats, does that mean no surcharge? Microwave, wireless, free space optics, also no surcharge? The fact it applies to only a specific class of competitors instead of all aggregators belies this for what it is: an arbitrary, anti-fttp-competitive cash grab not supported by an underlying cost caused by “multiple end users on the line”, and an attempt to raise the barrier to entry to the market Openreach wants dominance in by artificially inflating the cost of circuits to those aggregators – many of them small community groups as much as large names like Hyperoptic – filling gaps in Openreach’s provision.

    I’m sure they’ll opine that “gosh well if you put 100 subscribers on a 1G that’s *only* £5 a year per subscriber” or some similar rubbish but this flat cost of course has to be paid from day 1 no matter how many subs you have, and in some settings this penalty would affect there may never be more than a handful of end users to serve.

  10. Avatar Gary says:

    I thought BT was privatised in 82 not registered as a charity.

    You want to use the assets that they invested in to compete with the very company whose assets you’re using.. ? Build your own backhaul.

    1. Avatar - says:

      Do you have any BT shares?

      They are a regulated monopoly. It’s not commercially viable to build non BT backhaul, so are we best saying that these rural areas never get anything more than ADSL? Openreach are not going to them commercially, so the tax payer should simply write a cheque for whatever Openreach charge to rollout whatever solution they want if we are to build rural broadband?.

      Contrast that to asking BT as a monopoly to not extort and instead offer equal terms to end users vs competitors and then getting commercial rural deployment either subsidy free or for much reduced subsidy?

      Nobody is saying the circuits should be free, or discounted, but fair access to the same terms as everyone else is reasonable..

    2. Avatar Alex says:

      @”-”

      Ofcom runs a periodic market review where it weighs up the interests of all parties in the industry and sets regulation that’s designed to balance investment with competition and consumer protection. For the last couple of decades that has included extensive price restrictions on Openreach’s products and services, plus the introduction of PIA as one of their preferred ways to support altnet Full Fibre builds. You may not agree with that and you may think they should go further. Others probably think they’ve gone too far or got the balance just right. Either way, and respectfully, your arguments are/were best put to the regulator directly rather here.

    3. Avatar David says:

      We pay the construction charges to get that fibre where it needs to be in the first place, and we pay for it in full even though Openreach then gets to use those ducts for other purposes. We also pay the setup fee in full, and the cost to maintain the circuit does not change depending on what the circuit is used for. So this comment is just nonsense.

      On top of which you seem to be suggesting that a nationwide network that they were handed for free, and developed at a pure profit, is a matter of commerical rather than public interest.

    4. Avatar Alex says:

      @David
      “Handed for free” – not exactly how privatisation worked…
      “developed at a pure profit” – also not true.

    5. Avatar phil says:

      @Alex – ““Handed for free” – not exactly how privatisation worked…”
      Not far off it – the net share valuation at privitisation was a small fraction of the then-current build / asset-replacement cost, leaving a massive entry barrier for others, even without USO & some rather misdirected Ofcom contraints!

    6. Avatar Gary says:

      -Says.. Nope i don’t have BT shares and as they’re about 1/3 the value they were 5 years ago, I’m content to have not lost the money.

    7. Avatar Jamieson says:

      BT/ OpenReach are not a Backhaul monopoly. There are lots of backhaul providers and have connections into BT exchanges.

  11. Avatar Alex says:

    Business acts like business.

  12. Avatar Bob Smith says:

    Virgin media currently serve over 15 million premises with their own network, so not that much smaller than openreach. Yet nobody seems to be bothered that you cannot use their ducts, cables or services and they aren’t treated the same way by ofcom, never mind are charging too much.

    Maybe if both were treated equally then competition would increase and prices fall, including things like this.

    1. Mark Jackson Mark Jackson says:

      Openreach’s network is around 30 million premises, while Virgin covers roughly half the UK and almost entirely in commercially competitive urban areas. At present Virgin is thus below the threshold for Significant Market Power (SMP), although this may change with their proposal to reach another 7-8 million premises with FTTP (hence why you’re likely to see them do some sort of wholesale solution, but that’s also for business as well as regulatory reasons).

    2. Avatar Bob Smith says:

      Exactly, but remove the non profit areas, the rural areas no other business goes to, etc and those numbers get closer together. But with regard virgin, a duct is a duct, doesn’t matter the commercial use

      Kingston communications have 100% market share of Hull, maybe its time they shared too

    3. Avatar Alex says:

      VM also have by far the biggest ultrafast footprint.

  13. Avatar phil says:

    My view is that this is a punt by BT which will come to nothing, although having had the unpleasant experience of dealing with their corporate legal team I’m sure they will fight very aggresively to carry it. To me their key assertion is that this is a market (backhaul, especially in rural areas) in which they do not have Significant Market Power, which I would see as open to massive challenge through both Ofcom and the CMA. As others have stated trying to segment that market according to the customer’s use of the backhaul makes no technical (or legal?) sense. It needs fighting through any and all available channels!
    Minor point, but it’s also not clear whether they will try to apply this surchage to existing connections, either mid-term or at term end.

    1. Avatar Phil says:

      The documentation at present says it is for “*orders* after 01/01/2021” so does not appear to be retrospective

      ..yet.

    2. Avatar John H says:

      So at least on contract renewal, more likely on price review if they can get away with it.

    3. Avatar A_Builder says:

      I see.

      Let’s see if we can make sense of this.

      So it is OK for the owner of an office building to contract XYZ Alt Net to provide a 1G FTTP fibre that they will split and sell to all the tent ants of their office building.

      It is not OK for XYZ Alt Net to run the same fibre and split it and sell it to MDU or SDUs.

      How does that make any sense and how can OR tell which fibre is being used for what without and highly intrusive level of snooping which would breach just about every regulation you might like to think of.

      I’m afraid BT’s legal team does specialise in coming up with very narrow contorted arguments that fail to pass the sniff test. It is the sort of American style commercial legalese that everyone used to use for B2B transactions. Now that sort of lawyerese is not really acceptable and it certainly is not acceptable given the size of BT in relation to the smaller Alt Nets that need to be protected from being lawyered out of town.

      Alt Net contention is what, in my view, woke BT up and saved it.

    4. Avatar - says:

      @a builder

      Completely agree on your points, but my reading would be that even the case where the freeholder contracts may not be ‘exempt’ from this. I suppose it comes down to ‘is each office suite a premise’ if so, I don’t think it matters that only the landlord is buying and then splitting. It seems to be the mere fact that it is, in practice, split between multiple premisses. There seems to be no restriction that the CP is the one doing it.

      If so everyone would just buy from an aggregator or do the old ‘leased lines limited’ ‘ISP limited’ split.

      I suppose it might then also be down to what a premise is, if you have a licence for example for desks in a serviced office, for a full serviced office room within a common building or if you have a lease on a room or multiple rooms.

      However there would be a get out if they use CAT5e/6/6e or fixed wireless, or 5G, or {insert non fibre tech here} to get from the switch hanging off the openreach EAD to the premises. I wonder then if it has to be Cat5 all the way or if it could be say fibre floor to floor with the final drop copper. In that case what of hyperoptic as they often use EAD and Cat5 final drop – so are they exempt as their service is not actually FTTP even through they themselves advertise it as such? It’s just all completely mad…

  14. Avatar meadmodj says:

    I can see this has resulted in some polarised views but surely this is OR redrawing the line as to what their business is moving towards which will be centralised nodes. That is ISPs can purchase their services and install their backhaul to the relevant node to pick up their customers.

    Fibres transversing their network are by their nature bespoke and should attract appropriate charges. Ofcom can assess if these are justified.

    OR may have a monopoly for copper but it is regulated to allow access to it
    OR may have a monopoly for Duct/Poles but it is regulated to allow access to it
    OR does not have a monopoly for FTTP and Alnets are free to lay their own networks in their ducts.

    Altnets daisy chaining between locations before connecting to backhaul doesn’t sound good. Is that what is happening?

    1. Avatar Alex Atkin says:

      Depends what you mean by backhaul.

      How is this any different to how Openreach do it themselves? PONS by their nature are a daisy chain back to an aggregation node, and those aggregation nodes surely are further aggregated at the exchanges before being backhauled to the ISP PoP.

      Is this not how all the providers work? You put a PoP in a few larger exchanges then daisy-chain your traffic either through dedicated links or virtual links, mostly over the Openreach network.

      Even if you have a PoP in every exchange, that’s surely going to be provided largely by Openreach fibre? They’re basically charging a fee for the end to end of the network NOT being Openreach, how is that fair? You pay for the pipe, what you use it for should have zero impact on the price.

    2. Avatar Meadmodj says:

      That’s the issue Network Providers including OR want to provide capacity not unbundle fibre. In addition many of the current OR buildings will not be OR buildings once the copper is recovered. Some may stay in rural areas for remote OLTs but in urban the network will be more centralised.

      We have became so used to unbundling copper that it drifted into unbundling fibre.
      My view is that if OR are forced to do that in their distribution network, VM and Altnets should be similarly obliged or Ofcom simply treat these as they are, business connections, and let the market determine price.

  15. Avatar CP says:

    It’s about time offcom has some teeth and forced the complete spit of BT and openreach. It’s about time openreach was a standalone company.
    It may be wrong but I’ve always questioned are we (people contracted to other ISPs) paying through BT’s openreach charges to subsidise their BT’ sports channels.

  16. Avatar Mark E says:

    Just another example of why open reach need to be split from BT and BT need to die. Years of having a virtual monopoly, holding back innovation and fibre deployment, charging high prices for poor speeds and dreadful service. The UK’s consumers and businesses have suffered enough. OFCOM as a regulator have failed miserably over the years in effectively managing not only fixed line by also mobile telecommunications providers who are another bunch of crooks getting away with legalised fraud and robbery. You can once again point the finger at BT (EE) for their dishonest practices of above inflation price rises in contracts, carve out of MMS (picture messages), text replies to short codes, certain numbers and other services as additional services with extortionate costs despite advertising plans as unlimited data and unlimited txts and wholesale payment fraud by 3rd party providers for many years until recently. Data allowances abroad have gone down and I’m sure brexit will be a convenient excuse to bring back extortionate roaming charges in the EU.

  17. Avatar Anon says:

    There is no surcharge on EAD100 and OADMs are cheap these days. Just saying! 🙂

    1. Avatar wirelesspacman says:

      Just saying what though?

  18. Avatar Graham Moore, says:

    I worked for bt for many years and witnessed how third parties who use bt infrastructures treat them,deplorable. Make them pay, or build their own. Flipping cheek!!!

  19. Avatar A proud Altnet says:

    So does this mean that an ISP using EAD’s to connect to BT exchanges to allow them to resell the Openreach NGA FTTP products will face the price increase? I think not. This is totally aimed at screwing the Altnet market. But what this actually does is encourage Altnets to try even harder to screw Openreach.

    I seem to recall Openreach winning some LLFN projects based upon them saying that it will help third parties to build more FTTP projects. Well hopefully the public sector will challenge Openreach on this as well. Hopefully the public sector will stop funding these guys.

    What an absolutely daft move. However I cant believe they wont perform a U turn on this.

    The greater they build the barriers the stronger we become.

  20. Avatar FibreFred says:

    Looks like a lot of people are reading the headline and filling in their own blanks.

    Other telcos are trying to work around products to their advantage. Good on bt for making that less attractive.

    Build your own network and stop moaning

    1. Avatar ' says:

      “work around products to their advantage”

      Work around how?

    2. Avatar FibreFred says:

      Trying to link to intermediate nodes.

    3. Avatar J says:

      It is a service that takes 1g/10g to the local exchange on a dedicated line. It is not a work around. It is buying a service?

      Are you saying EAD/osa wasn’t designed for this? If so what was it designed for?

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Cheapest Superfast ISPs
  • Onestream £21.99 (*27.99)
    Speed 45Mbps, Unlimited
    Gift: None
  • NOW TV £22.00 (*40.00)
    Speed 36Mbps, Unlimited
    Gift: None
  • TalkTalk £22.00 (*29.95)
    Speed 38Mbps, Unlimited
    Gift: None
  • Hyperoptic £22.00
    Speed 50Mbps, Unlimited
    Gift: Promo Code: HYPERSALE
  • Plusnet £22.50 (*36.52)
    Speed 36Mbps, Unlimited
    Gift: £50 Reward Card
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Cheapest Ultrafast ISPs
  • Vodafone £25.00
    Speed: 100Mbps, Unlimited
    Gift: None
  • Virgin Media £26.99 (*44.00)
    Speed: 108Mbps, Unlimited
    Gift: None
  • TalkTalk £28.00 (*39.95)
    Speed: 145Mbps, Unlimited
    Gift: £14 for First 6 Months
  • Gigaclear £29.00 (*44.00)
    Speed: 100Mbps, Unlimited
    Gift: Promo Code: HELLO2021
  • Hyperoptic £29.00 (*35.00)
    Speed: 150Mbps, Unlimited
    Gift: Promo Code: HYPERSALE
Large Availability | View All
The Top 20 Category Tags
  1. FTTP (2983)
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  3. FTTC (1824)
  4. Building Digital UK (1799)
  5. Politics (1750)
  6. Openreach (1688)
  7. Business (1509)
  8. FTTH (1348)
  9. Mobile Broadband (1319)
  10. Statistics (1299)
  11. 4G (1133)
  12. Fibre Optic (1098)
  13. Wireless Internet (1072)
  14. Ofcom Regulation (1057)
  15. Virgin Media (1049)
  16. EE (745)
  17. Vodafone (726)
  18. TalkTalk (703)
  19. Sky Broadband (694)
  20. 5G (601)
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