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Last Updated: Tuesday, 3 August, 2004, 09:54 GMT 10:54 UK
Broadband net switch made easier
Computer user
Changing broadband providers can mean delays
Broadband companies have agreed to make it easier for people to change their high-speed net provider.

A voluntary Code of Practice has been agreed by 16 of the biggest broadband providers, but does not cover high-speed net through cable.

At the moment, if a customer wants to change providers, it can be a complex, disruptive and lengthy process.

Recent competition between high speed net access providers has seen prices fall, making broadband more attractive.

The Code of Practice was developed by an industry working group and is self-regulatory. About 70% of high-speed net companies have already signed up to it.

"Whilst we all want our customers to stay, we believe there needs to be a proper and seamless process to allow customers to move, should they choose to do so," said Richard Sweet, chair of the working group.

'No strings'

Broadband continues to grow. The Office of National Statistics said 27% of UK net connections were broadband in June.

CODE SIGNATORIES
AOL
BT
Bulldog
Easynet
InterViVo Networks
LCC Communications
Mailbox Internet
Netplan Internet Solutions
Nildram
Spitfire Telefonica UK
Thus
Uniworld Communications
Virgin.net
VNL
Wanadoo UK
Broadband analysts say it is currently a "gold rush" for consumers, with competition giving more choice and cheaper deals.

From Tuesday, anyone wishing to swap broadband companies can ask their existing provider for an authority code.

They then give their new provider the code to prove that they are permitted to swap, with "no strings attached".

The new net provider then arranges with BT Wholesale, who controls the broadband line, for services to be transferred with minimal disruption.

Currently, the code will affect 90% of ADSL (Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line) connections from BT.


SEE ALSO:
BT helped by broadband demand
29 Jul 04  |  Business
Wired broadband gets supercharged
18 Jul 04  |  Technology
Broadband divide on the horizon
16 Jul 04  |  Technology
Broadband hits four million mark
03 Jun 04  |  Technology
Watchdog backs broadband changes
06 Jul 04  |  Technology


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