BT throttles users' download speeds under 'Fair Usage' policy


BT, the UK’s biggest ISP has been accused of throttling users download speeds between 5.30 and midnight.

People who sign up for BT’s option one, eight mbps service, may find the speed they actually get is one mbps or under, which might contravene trade descriptions legislation.

A fair usage policy secreted on BT’s website reads: “We do limit the speed of all video streaming to 896Kbps on our Option 1 product, during peak times only.”

ISPs use “traffic shaping” to provide a good overall experience for all of its users. But in practise, this policy just leads to slow and occasionally unusable connections for everyone.

BT said: “Where we manage bandwidth, we do so in order to optimise the experience for all customers, whatever they want to do online.

“We believe there is a real issue that content owners like the BBC need to address and we are currently in discussions with the BBC executive to ensure that our customers get the best possible experience in the future.”

The issue is that BT and other ISPs are refusing to invest in the replacement of antiquated telephone lines while hiding behind their “Fair Usage” policies, which are inherently ridiculous. If you pay for something called, “unlimited broadband”, then having your connection throttled based on some ridiculous and arbitrary ‘fair usage’ terms in simply preposterous.

We pay a premium for our broadband in this country and we get one of the poorest services in the western world, its high time consumer groups put some concerted pressure on our ISPs to invest in some serious physical infrastructure to get us the service we deserve.

Why not test your connection? Tell us your actual speed and bandwith, what speed you were promised, and who your ISP is we’ll tell you who the best and worst are.