'Monopolistic' BT kicked where it hurts

BT was left with little option but to cut the cost of its Datastream wholesale broadband product - or face regulatory action from Oftel. Confirmation that BT was effectively threatened by the regulator has given heart to rival operators to continue to pursue actions against the dominant telco.

In a statement Oftel boss David Edmonds said: "Our initial findings were that these price changes, relative to the Datastream product, could have prevented other operators from competing to provide broadband services to Internet service providers. I therefore held urgent discussions with BT, and I asked them to make reductions in the price of the Datastream product.

"Maintaining the commercial viability of the Datastream product is crucial if other operators are to be able to compete fairly in broadband connectivity. He added that the price cut announced by BT "is of the same level as I would have imposed using my statutory enforcement powers at this stage of the investigation". For its part, BT is playing down the cut by insisting that it was made following "representations from customers" and "talks with Oftel".

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News source: The Reg

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