BT Group, the UK’s former incumbent telecoms carrier, has launched a cut-price high-speed internet service to help maximize broadband revenues and make up for the decline in its fixed-line operations.
Broadband is proving to be a key growth area for the carrier, but it is facing intense competition in the UK market from the likes of cable giant NTL and internet groups such as French-controlled Freeserve and Italy’s Tiscali, with some monthly broadband prices as low as 15.99 pounds ($29.96).
BT’s response is its cut-price service called BT Broadband Basic, which should operate at speeds of up to 512Kb, but costing 19.99 pounds ($37.40) per month if customers pay by direct debit; 20.99 pounds ($39.15) otherwise.
Subscribers will also pay a start-up price of 80 pounds ($149.66), which is made up of a 30 pound ($56.12) activation fee and a 50 pound ($93.54) modem.
BT hopes to wins five million broadband customers by the end of 2006, and is more heavily reliant on its broadband division than other European telcos because it doesn’t have the benefit of owning a mobile phone company, which often acts as growth engines for fixed-line operators.
However, its broadband offerings cost on average of 30 pounds ($56.01) and are viewed as more expensive than others. For example, Tiscali is offering internet access at 150Kbps for 15.99 pounds ($29.96) per month and no activation fee, and a 256Kbps service for 19.99 pounds ($37.40) with a 25 pound ($46.68) set-up fee. NTL offers a 150Kbps deal for 17.99 pounds ($33.59) with free installation.
BT will unveil more portfolio developments and discuss its broadband strategy on March 11.
This article is based on material originally published by ComputerWire