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NTL has announced a shake-up of its telephone tariffs, claiming that the offer is the "biggest and best range of free talk tariffs in the UK".

From November 1, customers who use the telephone for voice and Internet calls can sign up to NTL Phone and Surf - 24/7 internet access plus free off peak UK calls, for a fixed price of £28.50 per month.

By comparison, notes NTL, a similar package from BT costs customers £35.50 a month.

Other new tariffs include NTL Talk Unlimited Local with free local off peak calls and NTL Talk, a new entry-level service offering up to four hours of free calling per month for £11.50, including line rental.

Oh, and later this year the cableco plans to introduce a tariff called NTL Talk Unlimited 24, which will let punters make free local and national calls for a fixed monthly fee.

Hang on, there's more.. As part of the shake up, NTL is also planning to undercut BT for services such as voicemail and call divert. It also says there'll be cheaper international calls and calls to mobiles - both from just 2p per minute.

So is this the beginning of a price war between the two communications companies? Who knows.

A spokesman for BT declined to comment on whether this might prompt BT to cut its prices. Instead he said that BT always keeps its prices under constant review and he was confident that BT currently offered a very attractive package of tariffs. ®

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