Provider claims low demand for fibre broadband
One broadband provider is going against the grain and claims that for fibre broadband there is 'low demand seen throughout the industry' and has actually withdrawn its fibre based broadband products from sale for a few months.
This goes against the avalanche of news coverage that now has ITV journalists filming on beaches in the Isles of Scilly as fibre backhaul is brought ashore and almost daily appearances by one or other MP at a cabinet unveiling.
The provider in question is Primus Saver who claim they are removing the products for a period of three months and may reappear with revised pricing if and when new wholesale pricing appears.
Primus Saver operate at the low end of the market and the extra £8 to £10 per month that fibre services from Openreach command, plus wholesalers mark-up to account for the generally higher usage levels for fibre based services make bargain basement fibre services hard to market while still making a profit.
The UK has a real problem since if wholesale prices of fibre services are reduced it may drive demand, but if driven too low it will increase the ROI periods to the extent that Openreach may ask for more gap funding in rural areas to continue the roll-out, or introduce two-tier pricing. Also for alt-nets trying to compete where volume is difficult people may be reluctant to sign up to anything significantly more expensive than the TV advertised services that usually include unlimited usage too.