Ofcom confirms new rules to boost Britain’s broadband

28 March 2018

Ofcom has today published final statements on our reviews of:

Today’s statements cover the period from 1 April 2018. They confirm a package of measures Ofcom set out last month to further increase investment in ‘full-fibre’ broadband networks, and drive improvements in the quality of Openreach’s service.

On 23 February, we submitted a draft of our decisions to the European Commission for consultation. Following its review, the Commission provided no comments, and our final decisions remain unchanged to those published in February.

Our main measures are as follows:

First, BT must make its telegraph poles and underground tunnels open to rival providers, making it quicker and easier for them to build their own full-fibre networks directly to households around the UK.

Second, we have decided not to regulate the prices of Openreach’s fastest wholesale superfast broadband products, including its new full-fibre services. This supports incentives for operators to build full-fibre networks.

Third, we are ensuring affordable access to superfast broadband for people and businesses, by cutting the wholesale price that Openreach can charge telecoms companies for its entry-level superfast broadband service, which has a ‘download’ speed of up to 40 Mbit/s, and an ‘upload’ speed of 10 Mbit/s.

In our draft decision last month, we proposed to set the monthly charge for Openreach’s ‘40/10’ Mbit/s broadband package by 2021 at £11.92. Since then, we have adjusted this figure to £12.06 to reflect new information, particularly in relation to inflation and BT’s pension costs.

Finally, the new rules will include stricter requirements on Openreach to repair faults and install new broadband lines more quickly.