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Summary:

British Telecom, Britain’s largest broadband provider, is being accused of throttling bandwidth, impacting subscribers’ ability to watch videos from services like BBC’s iPlayer and YouTube. The BBC reports that subscribers to BT’s lowest-tier broadband plan should be getting speeds of 8 megabits per second, but that […]

British Telecom, Britain’s largest broadband provider, is being accused of throttling bandwidth, impacting subscribers’ ability to watch videos from services like BBC’s iPlayer and YouTube.

The BBC reports that subscribers to BT’s lowest-tier broadband plan should be getting speeds of 8 megabits per second, but that speed is being cut to as low as less than 1 megabyte per second between the hours of 5:00 p.m. and midnight (prime video watching time!). The result makes watching video more difficult, if not impossible, according to at least one BT customer.

BT’s Total Broadband Fair Usage Policy states that the company does “limit the speed of all video streaming to 896Kbps on our Option 1 product, during peak times only.” However, this policy is not explained in the terms and conditions when users sign up for service.

According to DSLReports, BT and other U.K. ISPs have been complaining that content companies should be subsidizing network carrier build-outs.

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  1. BT Talks Up Plans to Charge Video Providers Thursday, June 11, 2009

    [...] last week was caught throttling connections to the BBC iPlayer to less than 1 megabyte per second between the hours of 5:00 p.m. and midnight for subscribers of [...]

  2. Vid-Biz: DTV, iPhone, BT Thursday, June 11, 2009

    [...] should pony up for the amount of bandwidth they consume on its network. (GigaOM) Last week, BT was caught throttling the BBC iPlayer in the [...]

  3. The disruption is beginning… « Musings on Tech Wednesday, June 17, 2009

    [...] The BBC reports that subscribers to BT’s lowest-tier broadband plan should be getting speeds of 8 megabits per second, but that speed is being cut to as low as less than 1 megabyte per second between the hours of 5:00 p.m. and midnight (prime video watching time!). – newteevee.com [...]

  4. This is not the first time BT have slowed down customers connections. However, they seem to miss the point that the world is moving down the route of higher bandwidth technologies.

    It hits people that dont understand the difference and
    buy their broadband based on price, only to find it does not work as they expected and really they should be saying in their advertising “not suiteable for such things as iplayer video streaming between 5pm and 12am”.

    I have always avoided BT Broadband because they are far too expensive and I know that they mess about with bandwidth so you dont get what you expected to get.

    Come on BT do some research and you will find that primary school children could tell you that were are all going to be watching video more often.

  5. It’s Captastic! Cable One Embraces Congestion Pricing – GigaOM Thursday, November 19, 2009

    [...] still relatively rare. BT recently got in trouble with subscribers for slowing its speeds on video between the hours of 5 p.m. and midnight. Overall, these pricing changes and caps are both a way to manage traffic and increase revenue for [...]

  6. BT Boosts Fiber Intake With $1.49B Plan Thursday, May 13, 2010

    [...] between the BT network and networks in the U.S. However, that hasn’t stopped BT from some bad behavior on the network management side. Unlike Australia’s future fiber to the home network, [...]

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