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Freeserve, BT and AOL continue to dominate the UK's ISP sector accounting for almost two thirds of market share.

The latest figures from Oftel reveal that Freeserve has 21 per cent of the total ISP market, BT has 20 per cent while AOL UK has 17 per cent.

Overall, just under half of UK homes have Net access with 14 per cent of homes owning up to a broadband connection.

However, it seems that ISPs will find it increasingly tougher to sign up punters new to the Net. That's because four in ten of the population claims they are unlikely to get Net access.

So while the overall market for Net access might be reaching saturation, there is at least some good news for ISPs. The research found that four out of five broadband customers would tolerate a 10 per cent price rise for their service.

It seems that once people get broadband they don't want to let it go - even if it does mean having to dig deeper in their pockets.

So does this mean that ISPs are likely to up the cost of broadband in a bid to make more cash?

That's a tricky one. However, the research also pointed out that many Net users were reluctant to opt for a faster service because current prices are, erm, just too high. Ho hum. ®

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