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Increasing Charges - Time to get back to providing cheap Broadband / phone service

Alplus1
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Increasing Charges - Time to get back to providing cheap Broadband / phone service

Hi,

Plusnet is becoming ever more expensive with year on year charge increases on the line rental and now again on broadband / home phone contracts.

According to the press generally, a lot of the reason for this is because IP Providers are struggling to keep up with bandwidth demand due to the streaming of TV services such as Netflix.

Surely it's time therefore to get back to basics and separate online tv users out from ordinary broadband / phone users, and charge them for the extra bandwidth they're using whilst reducing line rental / costs for the rest of us.

 My costs have increased from approximately £11 per month 5 years ago to around £26 per month now, that's a 150% increase in an economy with less than 3% inflation.

Why should I pay for other people to watch tv over the internet when the only videos I watch are the usual youtube etc stuff.

These costs are simply unsustainable to people such as myself.

It's time Plusnet got back to basics and pared it's broadband and phone (unlimited) service back to a total monthly cost of around £12 (what it would be taking into account 3% inflation) and instead brought out a 2nd contract for TV site streamers, that reflects the additional costs they are putting onto the system.

 With another reported price increase for Broadband in the works according to the papers, I'm now on the point of having to cancel both my broadband and phone contracts and simply having neither the web or a phone. I'm not alone as there are thousands of users / people in the same financial boat.

Unless Plusnet wants to see a substantial loss in numbers of subscribers over the next couple of years, not to other providers, but to people simple abandoning home phone / broadband altogether, then it needs to get it's unlimited home broadband / phone service back to basics ie for internet use / youtube and similar internet site video use only eg sports video sites eg. World Surf League etc, and make phone / broadband cheap again, with a separate service making up the difference in costs, specifically for those who use tv streaming sites such as Amazon Prime, Netflix.

Failing that, Plusnet are likely to lose a significant number of users over the next few years as a result of people ceasing to have home phone / broadband and instead switching to mobile only.

23 REPLIES
rongtw
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Re: Increasing Charges - Time to get back to providing cheap Broadband / phone service

In a ideal world prices would not increase , but unfortunately we live in modern times where the need to make money out weighs the needs of customers.
A lot of the price rises Plusnet are just passing on from what they have to pay wholesale.
I would not say the price rises are due to new TV services but a general need for everyone to have decent connections 👍
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Re: Increasing Charges - Time to get back to providing cheap Broadband / phone service


rongtw wrote:
A lot of the price rises Plusnet are just passing on from what they have to pay wholesale.

What wholesale price rises? Wholesale line rental prices have been decreasing slightly over the past few years, and I think the monthly end user rental wholesale price for ADSL (and also all the FTTC options) have remained constant. I don't really think the price of wholesale bandwidth shared between all Plusnet's customers has been increasing either, it's always been upwards of £40 per 1Mbit/s per month. But the more bandwidth people use, the more bandwidth Plusnet will need to pay for, otherwise people will be complaining if they don't always get their full line speed every time they run a speed test.


rongtw wrote:
I would not say the price rises are due to new TV services but a general need for everyone to have decent connections 👍

I'd say this is nonsense, you don't need a decent connection for the sake of having a decent connection. I'd agree that most of the things requiring large amounts of bandwidth are videos and perhaps downloading games.

Alplus1
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Re: Increasing Charges - Time to get back to providing cheap Broadband / phone service

There's no justification for a 150% increase in prices for just broadband and phone, and I certainly don't have a good or reliable connection, something Plusnet constantly has failed top rectify over many years.

 

 

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Re: Increasing Charges - Time to get back to providing cheap Broadband / phone service

Moderator's note:

A duplicate post of the OP was released from the spam filter and removed.

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Community Veteran
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Re: Increasing Charges - Time to get back to providing cheap Broadband / phone service

The £11 per month 5 years ago must have been on some sort of introductory discount?

If the wholesale line rental price is £86.72 per year ex. VAT, that's about £7.23 per month, plus wholesale ADSL at something like £5.88 ex. VAT, that's a total of £13.11, plus 20% VAT makes £15.73. So unfortunately I think Plusnet charging £12 per month for ADSL broadband and line rental would be unrealistic.

daveplus
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Re: Increasing Charges - Time to get back to providing cheap Broadband / phone service

Assuming that your internet activity is very low, https://freeola.com/dial-up-internet/ might meet you needs.

Superuser
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Re: Increasing Charges - Time to get back to providing cheap Broadband / phone service

I suggest that there is a good deal of merit in the points being made here.  Whilst the only offer is a "As much as you can eat" menu, those with limited appetites (demands) are going to paying for those who gorge themselves on what's available.  We've all seen them, plates piled high like the close encounters mountain with gravy flowing off the edge of their plates and three Yorkshire puddings perched on top.

I recall the days of Plusnet claiming "There is no such thing as unlimited bandwidth" - bottom line is that it all has to be paid for.  I might be of the old school: pay for all that you consume and only what you consume, the same as electric and gas, for no one expects to pay for another's energy use.  However like water, there are many who expect / feel a right to unlimited bandwidth consumption at someone else's cost ... and see no issue leaving taps running.

If people want to consume (I might even say waste) bandwidth on gaming and streaming TV (especially mind numbing football) without measure, then those bandwidth consumption services should be charged for separately.

daveplus
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Re: Increasing Charges - Time to get back to providing cheap Broadband / phone service

When I first joined PlusNet, I was on the limited broadband package which was very restricted in terms of 08:00 to Midnight usage. That was significantly cheaper than the unlimited one.

Maybe that is something that Plusnet/BT could consider reintroducing for users such as the OP.

Alplus1
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Re: Increasing Charges - Time to get back to providing cheap Broadband / phone service

@ejs Might have been some introductory discount but in 2013, Line Rental via the saver was £125 = @£10 per month and that's retail price - I have it my billing and accounts. I seem to remember it increasing 50p per year so back to 2011, that would place it around £8.50 which seems about right.

 

I think it's possible there may have been an offer on broadband for £2.50pm, which would give around £13 per month total before any add ons.

Even if you wipe the broadband offer out, and add another £5 to give £7.50 for the broadband, which seems about right for full price, that still gives £18 compared to @ £26 pm now, and still a 50% increase, when inflation had been 3% per year. 

My point with Broadband and Phone, is Plusnet are pricing many customers out of the market, not to the competition, but literally into giving up phone and broadband altogether in favour of a mobile phone.

I don't personally believe it is necessary for Broadband and Phone to be limited as suggested above to keep the price low. I think what needs to happen, is given the increase in IP tv streaming services such as Netflick, Amazon Prime etc, those people subscribing to those services should have to pick up the extra bandwidth costs through a Broadband, Phone and TV Streaming contract, thus allowing basic Unlimited Broadband and Phone to be reduced in price to a much more reasonable level. Why should I pay the same as someone watching constant TV from premium streaming services, when all I watch is Youtube or some website with video or live streaming sporting events? My usage is going to be a fraction of those who choose to watch tv and if you can afford to pay for pay tv, you can afford to pay a little extra for the bandwidth to stream it. 

As a separate issue, on the reliability point, I also think given the length of time fibre has now been out, everyone in range of a cabinet should be being transferred to fibre and copper phased out. Again no reason why this should affect fibre subscribers. Simply restrict basic unlimited fibre to non premium tv streaming use and cap speeds at say 20mbs, whilst offering premium high speed services and streaming options to those who want the fastest speeds or stream tv. One of the biggest issues with my connection is unreliability. I barely go a month without issues and a complaint. Everyone knows it's tprobably he 50yr old lines, they're at the top of their SNR limits, the nodes probably get waterlogged when it rains and reliability goes down, so when there's a fibre cabinet at the end of the road, why aren't people being transitioned for free onto a fibre service for reliability as I just outlined? I'm sure people would happily pay for the modem if Plusnet could offer Unlimited Fibre and Phone capped at 20mbs for £18  per month all in (Premium TV streaming services and Torrent Use excluded).

Superuser
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Re: Increasing Charges - Time to get back to providing cheap Broadband / phone service

Pointnif information: the majority of fibre installations are FTTC which still utilises cooper from the cabinet to the premises. It is this part of the copper network which is so poor. That being the case your suggestion does not really deliver improvement. Real improvement only comes with fttp which delivers fibre to each property, completely eliminating copper.
Alplus1
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Re: Increasing Charges - Time to get back to providing cheap Broadband / phone service

I understand the copper to the cabinet is poor.  I'm not far from the cabinet, both fibre and copper cabinets are alongside each other and probably only 400yds away.

The issue is all the lines around here as I understand it are 50+yrs old (1959/60 ish when the housing was 1st built) including the ones from the exchange. I've spoken to several BT engineers, all of whom have quietly off the record said the same, the copper lines are poor and oxidised, with water getting into the nodes frequently. My own Line Attenuation currently shows 45db atm and has been in the 50's before, especially after rain.

In any event, broadband is now the equivalent of what 56K was when it was abolished in the 90's. Given the age and unreliability of copper, isn't it time that people were switched away from copper in any event? 

Also, on the copper to the premises point, again there's another simple answer, see if fibre fixes the issues and on premises that have had constant problems, switch to new copper from the cabinet.

However, all of this is a side issue to the cost point that users re being priced out of the Broadband and Phone market by those streaming TV services. I'm not pretending to be a light user btw. I'm just not a tv streamer.

daveplus
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Re: Increasing Charges - Time to get back to providing cheap Broadband / phone service


Alplus1 wrote:

I'm not pretending to be a light user btw. I'm just not a tv streamer.


So the bottom line is that you would just like to penalize everyone who streams to their TV.

Alplus1
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Re: Increasing Charges - Time to get back to providing cheap Broadband / phone service

No the bottom line is charges are going up because of the amount of bandwidth that tv streaming is using.

It's not fair to expect people who don't stream TV to subsidise those that do, especially when the result is that Broadband and Phone packages are becoming too expensive for many to afford at all.

 

What I'm saying quite simply, is if you want to stream TV, you should have to pay for a Broadband, Phone and TV Streaming package, not simply get a load of extra bandwidth for free with other non TV streaming users picking up the cost for that.

 

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Re: Increasing Charges - Time to get back to providing cheap Broadband / phone service

In a way, they probably already do pay more, by opting for a "Fibre" service.

You've decided that you shouldn't have to pay any extra for all the streaming you do, but others should pay more for the streaming they do.

Do you have any data to back up your claims of the amount of TV streaming people do, or that broadband and phone packages are becoming too expensive for many to afford?

And then of course you want a better or more reliable service, but of course you don't want to pay any extra for it.

I think your expectations are unrealistic.

However Ofcom is probably on your side, because last I heard, they were consulting on regulating the wholesale price of 40/10 FTTC down to about wholesale ADSL prices.