Worries over BT’s apparent ‘monopoly’ over superfast broadband
BT is currently aiming to replace copper lines with fast fibre-optic cables with a budget of £2.5 billion. Over 65% of the country will benefit from the new fibre-optic technology.
However there has been recent concern that BT may create a monopoly over superfast broadband. The government was warned that the country could “sleepwalk into a monopoly” by Labour MP Chi Onwurah. He believes the government should take action in order to prevent BT taking control.
BT’s rivals Virgin Media, and Fujitsu complain that BT will have all of the money – £980 million is at stake. BT has no other contenders, and having already grabbed two council contracts the fear of BT’s power seems real.
However, if action is taken against BT, the public could end up facing the costs. BT states that splitting the company will mean more for the taxpayer to pay – for the new network upgrades. Now the UK taxpayer has to pay for internet too?!
Onwurah stated that “structural separation is a must before a monopoly becomes real. However Virgin Media is fighting hard to maintain its demand by also upgrading to fire-optic connections, having reached 10 million homes before BT. They have also doubled and tripled broadband speeds for some customers.
So does BT have a monopoly that needs to be curbed? Or is this an excuse to cut BT cut of play?