Thursday, 22 July 2010

Why call BT?

A question that I’ve always wanted to know the answer to ever since I got into the telecommunications industry 14 years ago was why do most people tend to call BT first if they want a phone line or broadband service.

BT has always been the name on most people’s mind when it comes to any services run over the telecommunications network, usually because of the masses of advertising they do.

I’d like to tell you a couple of reasons why BT do so much friendly, touchy feely advertising...!

Several years ago the telecommunications industry was de-monopolised meaning that BT had to open their networks to allow competition into the market place meaning that they were no longer allowed a monopoly within the industry. This allowed for an influx of smaller telecoms companies giving them the ability to buy into the networks and give users more of a free choice. With more companies coming into play, BT had to split it’s organisation up into two ‘BT Retail’ and ‘BT Openreach’.

BT Openreach are the company that are responsible for looking after and maintaining all of the fibre and cabling over which most communications are carried. BT Openreach are regulated by Ofcom (Ofcom is the communications regulator that regulate TV and radio, fixed line telecoms and mobiles, plus the airwaves over which wireless devices operate). This regulation means that all registered telecommunications providers have the same rights and are able to utilise ‘BT Openreach’ to install, maintain and repair faults within the communications network, no matter how small or large they are. All of these providers pay ‘BT Openreach’ every month for their services and support.

So who is ‘BT Retail’? BT Retail are a telecommunications billing company, these are the people that we all see advertise on the TV, radio, internet all of the time, which takes me back to my original point.

Advertising costs a lot of money! BT Retail recoup all this money back from us, the end users by charging us for the services that run on the communications networks.

Did you know that BT Retail can charge up to £30 or more to have a single phone line installed into your premises.

BT Retail can charge hundreds of pounds more than their rivals to install ISDN line services into businesses premises.

Their monthly charges are generally higher than their competitors are and in some cases the charges can be as much as 20% more than their competitors.

Their call charges are generally higher than their competitors are and can be as much as 80% more expensive than the competition.

All of these extra charges are for what? The exact same service you can find elsewhere, yet without having overseas call centres, or having to sign up for 2, 3, 4 or even 5 year contracts.

We are all game for companies and individuals making money and profits and contributing to keeping the economy going, but I am baffled why people opt for BT when there are offerings in the market place that would suit the smaller/medium sized business giving them greater flexibility.

Before you think of calling BT next time, why not see what other providers can do for you, you’ll save money, have a better level of service, and you’ll be dealt with by people based in the UK and you will be helping to keep costs down.

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