Original URL: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2006/06/15/llu_openreach/

UK LLU hits half million

Wow

By Tim Richardson

Posted in Broadband, 15th June 2006 12:08 GMT

It's official - there are now half a million unbundled telephone lines in the UK and that number is growing by 20,000 new lines a week. So says BT Openreach - BT's access services division - which reckons the LLU market is beginning to mature.

With nearly twenty operators providing unbundled services from almost 1,000 local exchanges across the UK today, BT reckons LLU is "firmly established as a critical component of the highly competitive broadband market".

"Hitting this half million milestone confirms that the LLU market in the UK is truly coming into its own," said Openreach's Anne Heal, adding that wholesale price cuts had helped give LLU a kick up the backside.

Today's half million milestone is a far cry from the UK's first attempt to introduce competition in the UK. Take this story from 2002 - when there were just 150 (one hundred and fifty) unbundled lines in the UK.

Our favourite LLU story, though, comes from 2000, when there were fears that there would be so much demand for LLU that space in BT exchanges would be limited. The answer, according to official documents from the Electoral Reform Services (ERS), was easy.

Allocation of space would be decided on the throw of a dice. A crap shoot. For LLU. How apt. ®