Feeds

BT dodges flak with unmetered move

Misses out on a savaging from MPs

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Boost IT visibility and business value

BT admitted yesterday that its announcement concerning the introduction of unmetered dial-up access to the Net was planned to coincide with a meeting of backbench MPs.

The Trade and Industry Select Committee was due to grill Oftel over BT's monopoly but a spokeswoman for BT told the Telegraph that the timing of the announcement was "not unconnected with the trade and industry meeting".

So it's all just a happy coincidence that Oftel also used yesterday to announce new pricing arrangements that could result in cheaper Internet access in Britain. The new arrangements will mean that from January 2000, Internet service providers can choose what the pence per minute call rate for their customers should be, rather than simply charging the current standard local call rate, read an Oftel statement.

Under the proposals, Oftel plans to set a new rate for Internet calls separate from normal voice telephony, however the watchdog was not prepared to say what that new rate might be. The regulator wants to split the cost of a telephone call into two separate parts -- an initial charge for setting up the call, and a separate charge for maintaining the connection for the duration of the call.

Under current arrangements, these two charges are set at a uniform level. The effect is that short duration calls are under-priced, and long duration calls, such as dial-up Net access, are over-priced. It also said it plans to introduce a new 0844 code for net access and a new 0808 code for free and unmetered Internet services.

The result is that ISPs should be able to approach telcos and negotiate lower access costs for their customers, said an Oftel spokeswoman today. She also confirmed that BT's announcement yesterday was separate to Oftel's plans and that the timing was just a coincidence. ®

Related Stories

BT intros unmetered Net access
AOL salutes BT flat rate - sort of

The Power of One Brief: Top reasons to choose HP BladeSystem

More from The Register

next story
BBC goes offline in MASSIVE COCKUP: Stephen Fry partly muzzled
Auntie tight-lipped as major outage rolls on
iPad? More like iFAD: We reveal why Apple fell into IBM's arms
But never fear fanbois, you're still lapping up iPhones, Macs
Stick a 4K in them: Super high-res TVs are DONE
4,000 pixels is niche now... Don't say we didn't warn you
Philip K Dick 'Nazi alternate reality' story to be made into TV series
Amazon Studios, Ridley Scott firm to produce The Man in the High Castle
Sonos AXES support for Apple's iOS4 and 5
Want to use your iThing? You can't - it's too old
There's NOTHING on TV in Europe – American video DOMINATES
Even France's mega subsidies don't stop US content onslaught
You! Pirate! Stop pirating, or we shall admonish you politely. Repeatedly, if necessary
And we shall go about telling people you smell. No, not really
Too many IT conferences to cover? MICROSOFT to the RESCUE!
Yet more word of cuts emerges from Redmond
Joe Average isn't worth $10 a year to Mark Zuckerberg
The Social Network deflates the PC resurgence with mobile-only usage prediction
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Securing Web Applications Made Simple and Scalable
Learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.