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Monday, 13 May, 2002, 10:27 GMT 11:27 UK
Freeserve in NTL broadband deal
Internet use
British internet service provider Freeserve has clinched a deal to offer high-speed broadband web access via NTL's cable network.

Freeserve's high-speed internet connection will be offered to NTL subscribers as part of a package which also includes NTL's digital TV and telephone services.

NTL and Freeserve have not yet set the price of the new service, but the two companies said it would be "competitive with alternative broadband offerings in the marketplace."

Most major providers offer broadband internet access for about 30 a month, but installation costs vary.

Wider reach

Freeserve said the deal extends its broadband internet offering to the cable TV network for the first time.

"(The agreement) is in line with Freeserve's broadband strategy to obtain distribution to the mass consumer market through the most important channels," the company said.

Freeserve, one of the UK's biggest internet service providers, already offers broadband internet access via BT's telephone lines.

Its new cable TV offering will compete with NTL's own high-speed internet service.

The two companies hope that the new package will tempt existing Freeserve customers living within NTL franchise areas to upgrade to broadband and subscribe to cable TV at the same time.

NTL added that including Freeserve's broadband package on its cable network will enable it to offer a wider range of choice to its customers.

Super-fast

Broadband allows users to download material from the internet up to ten times faster than on a standard dial-up connection.

Freeserve, formerly owned by High Street retailer Dixons, is now part of French internet service provider Wanadoo.

NTL, the UK's biggest cable TV operator, filed for bankruptcy protection last week as part of a financial overhaul.

The heavily-indebted company said it aims to emerge from bankruptcy in September.

See also:

08 May 02 | Business
NTL files for bankruptcy
17 Apr 02 | Sci/Tech
Rural residents demand broadband
08 Apr 02 | Sci/Tech
BT offers new way to connect to net
19 Mar 02 | Sci/Tech
Broadband gets popular
13 Apr 02 | Sci/Tech
Britons dash for broadband
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