Ofcom has announced that it is deregulating the telecoms market – a move that could result in more choice and lower prices for consumers.
Before the announcement, Ofcom had strict regulations in place that prevented BT from offering competitive discounts, particularly when a customer chooses more than one BT service, such as phone, broadband and digital TV.
However, since the regulation was put in place competition in the telecoms world has grown, and Ofcom no longer sees BT as the market dominator it once was.
In fact, Ofcom has revealed that more than 12 million UK households and small businesses now use a telecoms provider other than BT, so the regulations have been lifted. Commenting, Ofcom's chief executive Ed Richards said:
"This is an important step in deregulating telecoms where competition can be relied upon to serve the consumer interest."
uSwitch.com has welcomed the decision, Jason Glynn, its communications expert said: "At last BT has the green light to offer discounts to customers taking more than one of its communications services – a strategy that its competitors have been successfully applying for some time.
"The reality of modern life is that most people now need and use more than one communications service in the home and taking a range of services from one provider as a 'bundle' is both convenient and cost effective."
In fact, research from uSwitch.com has revealed that 64 per cent of homes already take more than one service from the same provider, and a further one in five are considering signing up to a bundle in the next 12 months.
Mr Glynn adds: "We expect BT to waste no time in fighting back at the competition and consumers should watch out for a new range of attractive phone, broadband and digital TV packages coming their way very soon.
"Competitors should look out too – BT could certainly be giving them a run for their money," he added.
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