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BT Ignite is to offer a new wholesale unmetered Internet access service for ISPs and other licensed telecommunications operators (OLOs) based on the wholesale unmetered Net access product, FRIACO.

BTnet SurfPort24 - catchy name, no? - will be available to order from 18 January, 2001. The product will become available nationally from April 2001

According to the monster telco, the service will provide a fully managed, end-to-end unmetered Net access service that will enable service providers to offer flat fee Net access.

Since it is a wholesale product, it's difficult to translate BTnet SurfPort24 into an end user cost. But, based on other FRIACO-based products that are available, a good guess might be that the cost of 24/7 unmetered Net access will come in around £15 a month.

Which begs the question: what will BT do with Surftime AnyTime, its 24/7 unmetered product currently available for £19.99 a month? Will it reduce the price or ditch the product altogether?

Speaking to The Register, David Hughes, president, BT Ignite Internet Services, declined to comment claiming it was outside his remit.

Yet, only a week ago BTInternet - BT's retail ISP - said it would offer 24/7 unmetered Net using a FRIACO-based product - not a Surftime product. Even BT's own ISP has given Surftime Anytime the cold shoulder. ®

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