Feeds

Blair hails NTL Free Everything ISP plans

Goes live 17 April

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Intelligent flash storage arrays

NTL boss Barclay Knapp will today announce a subscription-free, unmetered access Internet service for everyone. And - get this - Tony Blair will hail the service as a "significant announcement". Hats off to NTL, Britain's biggest cable telephony company, for squirrelling an endorsement out of the Prime Minister. But what will other Internet services have to say about this? And will the City mark down BT shares yet again? Blair will deliver his pat-on-the back for NTL, when he delivers a speech, announcing that every British citizen should be able to go online in the next five years, the FT says. "We have to make sure people are not excluded from this revolutionary technology," he will say, according to the FT. "We have to have an internet for the people. We have to democratise the new economy. We must ensure it is open to all." The FT carries an astonishing quote from "an insider at the prime minister's office", who says the NTL accolade should not be seen as a snub to BT. "We put pressure on the whole industry and everyone's responded," the insider said. "The NTL offer is a step change and a world first, which leapfrogs us beyond the US, but we are not anti-BT: they are part of getting the cost down." Clearly, the government has learned its lesson from the Brown debacle of a couple of weeks back, when the chancellor (with help from a misreported FT article torpedoed BT's share prices by calling for cheaper Net access). But what about the hubris of "the insider"? Blair is jumping on the free Net bandwagon. His government has done nothing to start it rolling. NTL is to offer its free Internet access service to everyone - not just customers, and not just people within its cable areas. The service goes live from 17 April, but it's not clear if there is a trial period. Users must sign Customers must sign up to NTL's telephone service and agree to spend at least £10 per month on telephone bills. NTL says it can make the maths work because it is able also to squeeze ecommerce revenues from the Net service and sell other packages such as digital TV on top. In other words, it's a cross-subsidy situation. But unlike Alta Vista UK, which announced its free for all ISP plans yesterday, this time it is not a content company subsidising a telephony business - it is a telephony company taking the plunge. BT is by law unable to cross-subsidise its services, so the free access plan should deliver a massive boost to NTL. ®

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

More from The Register

next story
WHY did Sunday Mirror stoop to slurping selfies for smut sting?
Tabloid splashes, MP resigns - but there's a BIG copyright issue here
Spies, avert eyes! Tim Berners-Lee demands a UK digital bill of rights
Lobbies tetchy MPs 'to end indiscriminate online surveillance'
How the FLAC do I tell MP3s from lossless audio?
Can you hear the difference? Can anyone?
Inequality increasing? BOLLOCKS! You heard me: 'Screw the 1%'
There's morality and then there's economics ...
Google hits back at 'Dear Rupert' over search dominance claims
Choc Factory sniffs: 'We're not pirate-lovers - also, you publish The Sun'
EU to accuse Ireland of giving Apple an overly peachy tax deal – report
Probe expected to say single-digit rate was unlawful
While you queued for an iPhone 6, Apple's Cook sold shares worth $35m
Right before the stock took a 3.8% dive amid bent and broken mobe drama
prev story

Whitepapers

A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.