Ofcom has today set forward a proposal that aims to change the way switching broadband providers takes place, by changing the way that wholesale broadband is handled over BT's network.
Currently, a number of superfast broadband services operate over BT's network. However, when a customer wants to change from one service to another, that's handled by BT's Openreach division, which charges a £50 fee for the switch. This fee either has to be sucked up by the new provider, or is passed on to the end customer.
Ofcom is proposing that this fee should be slashed to £10-15, encouraging competition by making it cheaper to switch.
At the same time, Ofcom also wants to change the current situation that calls for year-long wholesale contracts between the new provider and BT, which currently stands in the way of short-term superfast broadband services. Ofcom wants to drag this down to one month - ideal for those who need a superfast connection, but can't commit to that year.
The new proposals form part of the Ofcom Fixed Access Market Reviews, which would come into effect in April 2014, and could see a shake-up in the deals we're offered for superfast broadband, as well as the length of time we have to stick to a contract.