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Honesty can hurt...
Wednesday 21 August 2002 17:51:00 by Andrew Ferguson

It certainly can if your phone line is connected to one of the 74 exchanges that BT has just announced are unlikely to get the current ADSL product, simply because the costs for that exchange would mean a trigger so high it would be stupid. The full list can be seen at the BT media centre.

The not so bad news is that 169 exchanges actually got their triggers set and not a 750 trigger level among them, Pembury manages 200 (currently at 51%). The vast majority are around the 350-400 mark and the highest is Billingshurst at 500 (currently 11.6%). Our tracker should recalculate the percentages once it updates over night. BT is still reviewing a further 231 exchanges with the results due to be announced by the end of September 2002.

For those people on exchanges that have missed out on the review so far, these words from BT should offer a slight comfort "Should significant numbers of registrations be recorded against any exchange not previously reviewed due to low internet use patterns, an individual costing review would be carried out and a threshold trigger level set. ".

The fact that BT is able to take the stance of letting demand lead the rollout of ADSL and costing each individual exchange rather than letting high demand areas support those with low demand, reflects on how depressed the whole Telecoms market place is. In other words there is no great risk of a competitor rolling out an affordable broadband product across the whole country. The main challenger at this time appears to be the emerging 802.11b commercial providers and it will be interesting to see how these startups cope once they get going, i.e. will they attract the relatively small groups of heavy internet users with the attendant contention issues or will it appeal to a broad cross-section of users.

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