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BT will recruit up to 2,000 businesses and consumers to take part in a trial of its new higher speed internet service, the former monopoly announced today.

From next month broadband users in the Strathclyde region of Scotland and in Greater London will be able to take part in the pilot to test whether DSL lines are able to operate reliably at between 2 meg - 8 meg.

BT Wholesale will be working with ISPs to carry out the trials.

BT Wholesale products director Bruce Stanford said the trials will help the telco "fully understand how higher speed broadband service might be best deployed" when it looks to roll out faster broadband services in the autumn.

From 1 April, BT Wholesale is also beginning employee trials for ADSL2+ technology, which should provide speeds of up to 18 meg.

Details of BT Wholesale's speed upgrade were announced a month ago with the telco promising faster and cheaper broadband in a move designed to back its commitment to greater competition and flexibility in the UK's telecoms sector. ®

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