Broadband row could affect customers

07 February 2008 / by None
An investigation into broadband line sharing charges could lead to a row that may consequently affect consumer prices, say analysts.

Ofgem has agreed to review BT's line sharing charges, which could result in the company significantly increasing charges to its rivals for accessing its network, the Guardian reports.

Any increases could affect what other companies must pay for products such as local loop unbundling, which is the process used to access BT's lines for their own services.

This is expected to be met with disapproval from rival companies such as Carphone Warehouse and Tiscali, who are likely to argue that such price increases on their ability to provide fast connections would have repercussions for the broadband industry, the report continues.

Commenting on the issue, Steve Malcolm, an analyst at Arete, said "It seems unlikely they would be able to absorb any increases given poor current profitability, while passing them on to customers would inevitably create a backlash."

In related news, a broadband advertisement by Virgin that attracted complaints from rivals has been cleared by the Advertising Standards Authority.

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