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BT Wholesale has refined its much-criticised ADSL pre-registration system making it quicker and easier for areas to upgrade to broadband.

The move is a victory for common sense and means that BT will upgrade an exchange as soon as it hits its trigger level.

Up until now, once the threshold had been met ISPs then had to seek confirmation for 75 per cent of the orders - a move designed to ensure that the demand was genuine. However, some ISPs failed to cooperate with the scheme by refusing to pass on the information or only submitting it in batches.

Industry insiders described the process - designed to map demand for ADSL in areas currently not served by broadband - as clunky and unworkable. One local campaigner called it "a shambles".

The new streamlined process also means that exchanges should be converted to ADSL six weeks faster than before. BT will also introduce new measures to weed out false registrations that might artificially inflate demand levels at exchanges.

Welcoming today's announcement, a spokesman for AOL UK said: "The easier we can get people online the better." ®

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