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Zen Fears Broadband Price Confusion

Posted: 18th May, 2004 By: MarkJ
ISP Zen Internet has today spoken of an issue that has only just started to become apparent. The provider fears that BT's latest price changes have made selecting a provider "as complicated as finding the right mobile phone operator and tariff":

BT pricing changes to complicate broadband Internet selection

Choosing an Internet service provider (ISP) is set to become as complicated as finding the right mobile phone operator and tariff, according to Zen Internet, the provider of Britain’s fastest broadband Internet connections for consumers and small businesses.

This is due to major changes to BT’s wholesale pricing model, which are expected to take effect from June. These price changes will move business risk away from the telecoms giant and onto the country’s ISPs.

Capacity Based Charging (CBC) will force ISPs to fill the pipes they use to deliver broadband Internet access to make them economically viable.

As a result, ISPs will be forced to work on creative ways to fill their pipes and this is likely to mean a proliferation of special deals, muddying the marketplace and making the selection of the right deal very difficult. And Zen Internet is warning that this could damage service levels for consumers if ISPs load too many people onto their pipes.

“It could be likened to the mobile phone market where there are so many deals available and different packages that even those who publish independent guides aren’t completely sure on the best value service,” said James Blessing, technical development, Zen Internet.

“The upshot is that customers should be able to choose packages which best suit their requirements rather than choosing a catchall product. We should also see the launch of 256kbps and 2Mbps home products with very easy upgrade paths, possibly including instant online upgrades.

“We are looking at various models, but generally Zen Internet’s focus will be on ensuring that we offer a quality service with industry-leading reliability and customer support.
”

Zen Internet is recognised as one of Britain’s leading ISPs, having come top in a recent ADSLguide speed test. This was the latest in a string of prestigious accolades that have recognised the company’s success. It also featured in the top 50 of The Sunday Times Tech Track 100 that lists Britain’s most dynamic unquoted companies.

And it also received a top ten place in Deloitte & Touche’s annual Technology Fast 50 Awards. These awards track the growth of technology companies in seven regions across the UK and Ireland and recognise leaders in the telecommunications, hardware, software and biotechnology industries.


Unfortunately history has shown that confusing price and service options will win out, you only have to look at the hundreds of unmetered providers to see that. On the other hand, there is choice.
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