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BBC News talks with Angus Porter of BT
Monday 23 September 2002 13:24:00 by Andrew Ferguson

BBC News Online has highlighted an audio clip where it talks to the CEO of Tiscali UK and the MD of BTs Consumer Division Angus Porter. The Real Audio is accessible by clicking here.

Unfortunately there seems to have been a few misunderstandings of the market. The item opens with the Tiscali CEO making comments that the £50 activation fee was fine when an engineer was sent out - odd that since the fee was actually £150 for an engineer assisted install and has risen to £210+VAT now. The CEO also says that the activation fee should drop to around £5 per user. Whilst the activation now does not involve a truck role to a customer, it often involves an engineer visiting the exchange and whilst it may only take a couple of minutes, by the time BT Wholesale is billed for this time it is unlikely to be as low as £5.

Also when talking to Angus Porter, the BBC appears to have thought that the recent Oftel comments on lowering the cost of leased lines actually applied to ADSL lines. This is soon corrected.

Not the best performance from the BBC or Tiscali really, it is worrying that BT Retail almost come out of it looking like the good guy. Perhaps the errors and misunderstandings are a true reflection on how little the UK Broadband market is understood by the public at large. The question that BT should be looking at is, "Will the current advertising campaign improve peoples understanding or not?".


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