Broadband connections hit new record

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The Independent Online

BT chalked up a further milestone today in its bid to focus on new wave technologies with news of a record quarter for broadband connections.

BT chalked up a further milestone today in its bid to focus on new wave technologies with news of a record quarter for broadband connections.

The former state-owned telecoms group said it achieved more than 600,000 wholesale link-ups in the quarter to September 30, taking its wholesale arm's end user base to nearly 3.3 million.

BT Wholesale sells phone line capacity to internet service providers who supply broadband connections to householders.

BT said the figures came in the same week that the UK overtook Germany in terms of broadband users per 100 people in the population.

The company has said the cornerstone of its long-term strategy is to remove its reliance on fixed lines and to focus on new technologies such as broadband, although the landline operation would remain its core business.

Traditional lines are facing fierce competition and are becoming a smaller part of the overall communications market, the company has said.

BT Wholesale chief executive Paul Reynolds said today the UK broadband market was "really taking off".

"These are fantastic figures for BT, for the hundreds of service providers we support and for Broadband Britain," he said.

BT also said its retail arm, which acts as an internet service provider, lifted its share of the net extra connections in the quarter by one percentage point to 30%, taking its installed base to 1,283,000 customers.

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