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Customer: BT admitted it had 'mis-sold' me fibre broadband

Computer said yes, sales peeps said yes, speed checker said: Noooo

By Kat Hall, 12 Jan 2017

Concerns are growing that some customers switching to BT fibre broadband may not be able to receive the service, despite the ISP "availability" checker saying otherwise – leading some to mistakenly sign up for the service.

One customer got in touch with The Register to report he had switched from a £5 TalkTalk package boasting speeds of 18Mbps to a BT fibre package of up to 80Mbps for £35 per month.

That was after the BT Infinity website said he was eligible for the service. The Register has confirmed this by entering his data into the availability checker – which still shows he is entitled to the service.

But after the service was "installed", a speed test revealed he was still getting just 18Mbps.

After being told contradictory information by BT customer services, it transpired he was not eligible for the product.

The company apologised for having "mis-sold" him the fibre package in a screen grab with a customer services rep seen by The Register.

"There are 2,000 houses in my village... so is BT misleading us all? And if it does this in our village, how many others?"

He speculated that BT may hold inaccurate information on its systems, with the test data not having been fed into the automated sales data.

However, when our source raised the issue with Ofcom, the regulator responded that it could not intervene.

In a letter seen by The Register, it said: "In relation to the installation of the broadband service; I should explain that although providers can accept orders for fibre broadband, sometimes they do not know until the day of connection that there is no capacity for the service.

"Ultimately, we would not expect a provider to sell a service if they know it cannot be provided."

Over the next three years, BT intends to increase its fibre broadband coverage, rolling out its ultrafast hybrid fibre and copper G.Fast technology to 10 million customers, which will provide speeds of more than 100Mbps by 2020. A further 2 million homes will receive fibre-to-the-premise by that date.

The Register contacted BT for comment on this story two days ago and is awaiting a comment. ®

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