News: Ofcom acts to cut home phone and broadband prices

The cost of home telephone and broadband services could come down after telecoms regulator Ofcom moved to reduce the wholesale price.

It has revised the list of rates that Openreach, which manages BT’s network, can charge other providers for using its services.

In some cases, the wholesale price could fall by more than 10% per year.

The move could benefit companies such as TalkTalk and Sky, but not Virgin Media which uses its own cable network.

Under Ofcom’s proposals the prices of two of the ways that BT’s rivals get access to its network will come down.

The first, called Local Loop Unbundling, allows telecoms firms to site their equipment in BT exchanges and take over lines to customers.

Ofcom wants the price Openreach charges when an operator takes over these lines completely to drop by between 1.2 and 4.2% every year. Where lines are shared it wants prices to drop by between 11.6 and 14.6% every year. To illustrate the potential numbers affected, Ofcom said there were about 7.6 million unbundled lines in the UK.

The second, called Wholesale Line Rental, involves telecoms firms simply renting lines from Openreach. Ofcom wants the prices of these to drop by between 3.1 and 6.1% every year. There are about 6.14 million WLR lines in the UK.

via BBC News – Ofcom acts to cut home phone and broadband prices.

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