We use cookies to provide you with a better experience. If you continue to use this site, we'll assume you're happy with this. Alternatively, click here to find out how to manage these cookies

hide cookie message
80,259 News Articles

Oftel sets unmetered deadline

BT must cut wholesale unmetered prices by March

Unmetered internet access has been given another nudge towards ubiquity after telecomms watchdog Oftel ordered BT to give competitors fuller access to its network yesterday.

Oftel told BT, accused of dragging its feet over the unbundling process, to offer other service providers, such as AOL and Freeserve, a new unmetered internet access product known as ST FRIACO by 26 February.

After an 18-month uphill struggle Oftel has now enforced this deadline to ease concerns over unfair line distribution to competing operators.

“A deadline can only be set once a determination [of the whole process] has been made,” said a spokesperson for Oftel. “The deadline then falls seven days after that date.” In lay terms this means Oftel has worked out BT can do this, and has now told it firmly to do so.

The current FRIACO (flat-rate internet access call origination) service conveys internet calls to BT’s local exchanges. ST (single tandem) FRIACO will send the calls across the BT network to the operators’ own networks.

The move should now enable operators to compete efficiently with BT. Oftel set the price internet providers would have to pay at between £7 and £8 per connection per month for the unlimited internet access lines.

Oftel acknowledged recognises BT’s local exchanges may be overloaded and has therefore incorporated measures in the agreement to handle the anticipated growth in internet traffic.


IDG UK Sites

12 cheapest smartphones of 2015: The lowest-cost smartphones you can buy in the UK. Best budget...

IDG UK Sites

Samsung: King of the Androids (or MWC, at least)

IDG UK Sites

Get free stock photos with Vince Vaughn in them

IDG UK Sites

Apple Maps vs Google Maps comparison review – has Apple done enough to beat its biggest rival?