As hinted at yesterday, Carphone Warehouse has unveiled details of a new bundled broadband and phone service, using the strapline "free broadband forever". The price significantly undercuts similar services from leading players such as AOL, BT and NTL/Telewest.
To get the deal, you must subscribe to Carphone’s TalkTalk fixed line phone service. For £9.99 a month, there’s unlimited local and national landline calls, unlimited international landline calls to 28 countries, plus up to 8 meg broadband access. On top of the monthly fee, there’s also a monthly line rental charge of £11, which means a bottom-line price of £20.99 a month. Anyone signing up to the service is also tied in to an 18 month contract, must stick to a 40 gig a month download limit and pay a one-off £30 connection fee.
A similar package from BT would cost more than £55 a month while Bulldog would do it for just over £42 a month. Announcing the offer, Carphone chief executive Charles Dunstone said broadband was "a right, not a privilege."
Carphone is able to offer such competitive prices because it is investing heavily in local loop unbundling (LLU) – installing its kit in BT’s telephone exchanges to provide services directly to end users. With 1,000 exchanges covered, this means 70 per cent of the population can sign up to the deal. Those outside Carphone’s LLU footprint will have to pay an extra £9.99 for the package.