Virgin Media sells old ADSL users to TalkTalk
The Financial Times is reporting that TalkTalk has acquired the last 100,000 ADSL customers over at Virgin Media. This is the old National ADSL network and with their departure Virgin Media should be more focussed on its cable platform and the expansion plans (which include an additional 5,000 premises recently announced for Glasgow).
TalkTalk is currently shadowing Virgin Media in terms of broadband connections and the Q2 results have declared 4,221,000 customers for TalkTalk versus 4,415,500 cable broadband customers at Virgin Media, adding another 100,000 ADSL customers will push TalkTalk close enough that with strong marketing and a successful FTTP deployment in York in 2015 we could see Virgin demoted to fourth largest provider in the UK.
The latest financials from TalkTalk reveal that the TV offers are proving popular, adding 115,000 TV packages in the last quarter and some 67,000 fibre (FTTC) customers. This means TalkTalk has around 308,000 fibre customers over the Openreach GEA-FTTC network and is likely to be the next largest operator after the BT Consumer division.
"We have made good progress on our fibre to the premise joint venture in York. Fujitsu has been appointed as the infrastructure contractor and we commenced the first phase of digging to build the network out from our points of presence to our cabinets two weeks ago. We are on track to start connecting customers to our Ultrafast product in York next year. We are excited about bringing affordable 1Gig services to consumers and businesses in York and should the trial be successful, we see the potential to build a pure fibre network to 10 million households."Extract from Q2 TalkTalk Financials
The venture in York is currently just to connect 20,000 premises in 2015, and it looks like TalkTalk is seeking to push this strategy to many more homes if take-up is high. A full fibre solution would allow TalkTalk to really embrace the TV world and maybe even abandon FreeView and rely on the fibre optics to deliver all the channels in higher quality than even FreeView HD. UHD has been seen as relying on very expensive televisions but the price has dropped down to the £600 mark and being able to deliver 25 Mbps IPTV streams reliably may prove a unique selling point.