Feeds

BT ordered to share telegraph poles for fast broadband

Your fibre optics are not your own

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

BT has been ordered to share access to ducts and telegraph poles with competitors who want to build their own faster broadband infrastructure.

The Ofcom ruling means Sky, TalkTalk and other big rivals could cheaply deploy their own fibre optics between local exchanges and premises, providing more intense competition.

It follows two surveys of the national telecoms network, which found that up to 50 per cent of ducts and poles throughout have spare capacity for more cables.

"Availability is highly variable across the country and the practicalities of using BT's ducts and poles have yet to be worked through," Ofcom cautioned.

Also today, in a long-expected ruling, Ofcom said that the fibre optic lines BT is itself installing must be available to competitors to unbundle, as with the current generation of copper wires. Unlike under current local loop unbundling regulations, BT will have full control over pricing, "to encourage investment".

"We believe there will be no detriment to consumers as BT's [unbundled fibre] prices will be constrained by the wider competitiveness of the broadband market," Ofcom said.

BT has so far announced fibre-to-the-cabinet and fibre-to-the-premises upgrades that will cover 40 per cent of its network - about 10 million homes and businesses - by mid-2012. It has also said it believes it is commercially viable to improve internet access for about two thirds of the country, and called for government help to go further.

Finally, Ofcom announced more price controls imposed on the existing broadband market. Where BT has a wholesale monopoly, new caps will be imposed when BT's voluntary caps run out. Where there are two or three wholesale providers, BT will have more freedom to set prices, but will be obliged to base them on transparent costing.

There regulatory documents relating to Ofcom's rulings are here. ®

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

More from The Register

next story
Brit telcos warn Scots that voting Yes could lead to HEFTY bills
BT and Co: Independence vote likely to mean 'increased costs'
Phones 4u slips into administration after EE cuts ties with Brit mobe retailer
More than 5,500 jobs could be axed if rescue mission fails
New 'Cosmos' browser surfs the net by TXT alone
No data plan? No WiFi? No worries ... except sluggish download speed
Radio hams can encrypt, in emergencies, says Ofcom
Consultation promises new spectrum and hints at relaxed licence conditions
Blockbuster book lays out the first 20 years of the Smartphone Wars
Symbian's David Wood bares all. Not for the faint hearted
Bonking with Apple has POUNDED mobe operators' wallets
... into submission. Weve squeals, ditches payment plans
This flashlight app requires: Your contacts list, identity, access to your camera...
Who us, dodgy? Vast majority of mobile apps fail privacy test
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.
Protecting users from Firesheep and other Sidejacking attacks with SSL
Discussing the vulnerabilities inherent in Wi-Fi networks, and how using TLS/SSL for your entire site will assure security.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.