Feeds

BT ordered to share telegraph poles for fast broadband

Your fibre optics are not your own

The smart choice: opportunity from uncertainty

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. ®

Eight steps to building an HP BladeSystem

More from The Register

next story
Auntie remains MYSTIFIED by that weekend BBC iPlayer and website outage
Still doing 'forensics' on the caching layer – Beeb digi wonk
Major problems beset UK ISP filth filters: But it's OK, nobody uses them
It's almost as though pr0n was actually rather popular
Microsoft unsheathes cheap Android-killer: Behold, the Lumia 530
Say it with us: I'm King of the Landfill-ill-ill-ill
All those new '5G standards'? Here's the science they rely on
Radio professor tells us how wireless will get faster in the real world
Apple orders huge MOUNTAIN of 80 MILLION 'Air' iPhone 6s
Bigger, harder trouser bulges foretold for fanbois
Yorkshire cops fail to grasp principle behind BT Fon Wi-Fi network
'Prevent people that are passing by to hook up to your network', pleads plod
US freemium mobile network eyes up Europe
FreedomPop touts 'free' calls, texts and data
Oh girl, you jus' didn't: Level 3 slaps Verizon in Netflix throttle blowup
Just hook us up to more 10Gbps ports, backbone biz yells in tit-for-tat spat
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Prevent sensitive data leakage over insecure channels or stolen mobile devices.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.