UK cheaper than California for unmetered internet access
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Unmetered dial-up Internet access is cheaper in the UK than it is in California and Germany, according the UK telecoms watchdog Oftel. Its latest international benchmarking report shows UK prices at February 2001 for key telecoms services were still amongst the lowest in Europe, and compare favourably with the USA.

Key findings
• For residential heavy Internet users in the UK unmetered Internet access costs from £18 per month – as compared to the equivalent of £19 per month in California, and £39 per month in Germany. Unmetered dial-up Internet access is not available in France or Sweden;

• For a typical residential UK phone user, costs are from around £19 per month, less than Germany (£20) or France (£24);

• For occasional users of a mobile phone, costs are from around £12 a month, cheaper than France (£16) or Italy (£18);

• Some business telecoms services are more expensive than in other countries, but prices continue to fall in the UK.

The director general of telecommunications, David Edmonds, said: "With the introduction of unmetered tariffs which are now widespread in the UK, Internet access is cheaper here than in California and a number of other European countries.

"UK consumers continue to get a good deal for key telecoms services compared with other European countries. Over a third of UK Internet consumers now opt for some form of unmetered access, while dial-up unmetered packages are not yet available for Swedish and French consumers."

The benchmarking study is available on Oftel's website


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