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BT Wholesale is to shake-up the way its customers pay for wholesale ADSL access.

The UK's dominant telco reckons the measures - which are due to be introduced later this year - will give operators and ISPs "more flexibility to innovate in packaging consumer and business ADSL services".

BT also reckons that this "flexibility" could lead to lower price ADSL packages for very light usage services or lower bandwidth "entry level" ADSL services.

Which means what, exactly? Well, it could mean that some ISPs might opt to offer slower speed ADSL, such as 250k or 150k, for example. Others might even decide to offer a capped service with punters paying a lower monthly fee, but paying on a pay-as-you-go basis once they've used up their quota.

Or it could just mean that ISPs are better able to mange their costs and, in turn, pass these on to consumers.

According one industry expert, it's smaller ISPs that are more likely to be in a position to come up with "innovative" new products currently being touted by BT. The big ISPs are more likely to use the changes to improve their own costs.

Many in the industry were still digesting today's announcement when El Reg got on the blower.

However, in a statement AOL UK told us that the new measures would offer service providers "some additional flexibility to offer a wider variety of products and prices".

The ISP added: "It is therefore welcome as a step in the right direction, but it is not the answer to the inherent difficulties in the broadband market caused by the lack of effective wholesale competition, on a national basis." ®

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