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Ofcom wants to impose "strict new rules" on BT Openreach Biz lines

Monday, 04/04/2016

Often, service providers come to Genius unhappy with the speed and quality of provisioning services from the likes of BT and other network carriers.

Now a report published by Ofcom bears testament to these problems and seeks to impose "strict new rules" on BT Open reach to improve its leased line services to businesses. Draft proposals recommend faster installation times, lower prices for high-speed lines and greater access to BT’s “dark fiber” network by competitors.

Jonathan Oxley, Ofcom Competition Group Director, said: “BT is relied on by many companies to install these lines, and its performance has not been acceptable. These new rules will mean companies across the UK benefit from faster installation times, greater certainty about installation dates, and faster repairs if things go wrong.”

According to Ofcom the leased line market is worth around £2bn, with most of those lines provided on behalf of competing providers by BT. It said: "Ofcom has decided that Openreach is taking too long to install leased lines and is not providing adequate certainty that the services will be provided by the date first given to the customer."

Ofcom is proposing that, by the end of March 2017, Openreach must complete 80 per cent of leased line orders by the date it promises customers, rising to 90 per cent from April 2018. Under the new proposals, competitors will also be able to use BT’s fibre-optic cables with their own equipment, rather than rely on BT’s equipment.

Good to know that something is being done. Genius and thousands of IT service providers will look forward to the improvements that OFCOM can achieve.

Download the Ofcom report here

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