BT Wholesale today set out proposals aimed at introducing more options in the way service providers pay for broadband access, giving them more flexibility to innovate in packaging consumer and business ADSL services.
The proposals, planned for introduction later this year, offer additional options whereby services providers can chose to pay for their BT IPStream ADSL broadband services based on either the maximum network bandwidth selected, known as capacity charging, or the level of network usage month by month, known as usage charging.
BT is briefing its service provider and corporate wholesale customers on the plans and intends to announce indicative prices in the Spring as the details of the new pricing options are refined.
BT believes this flexibility could lead to lower price ADSL packages for very light usage services or lower bandwidth “entry level” ADSL services.
Bruce Stanford, BT Wholesale products director, said: “Over the coming months it is planned to offer our wholesale customers a choice of the existing BT IPStream pricing model and the two new options. They will be able to choose the option which fits their business model and develop a wider or more focussed product set which will give them the flexibility to innovate and help drive broadband take-up by offering tailored solutions for their customers.
“Our customers have told us they are looking for the flexibility to differentiate their products and we are now taking our proposals to them so we can fine-tune the new options prior to launch.”
Under both proposed new options the wholesale monthly end user access charge would be a uniform cost whatever the end user product speed. This would be lower than the current £13 wholesale monthly charge for the BT IPStream Home 500 end user access component.
With the capacity charging option, service providers would pay a higher charge for the aggregated access component which carries the broadband data from the BT network to the service provider’s premises (BT Central) or to the internet (BT Central Plus). This re-balancing of the charges would enable service providers to offer a wider range of services and the possibility of lower priced products with low bandwidth requirements.
The usage charging option would have three components: the new, lower, end user access charge; the BT Central or BT Central Plus element at the same rates as the existing model; and a usage charge which would vary month by month depending on the usage levels