UK consumers are paying more for high speed internet services than their American and continental-European counterparts, according to figures published by Oftel.
Pricing for DSL and cable modem high bandwidth services in the UK is up to £108 more expensive per year than in France, Germany and the US.
Figures in October last year showed that in the UK the monthly charge for residential higher bandwidth services was around £40 compared to £37 in France, £31 in Germany and £32 in the US.
David Edmonds, director general of Oftel, said: "While the survey shows that UK prices were somewhat less favourable compared to other countries surveyed, DSL and cable modem services in the UK are still at an early stage of roll-out and take-up.
"Since October 2000 some cable modem services have become available to UK users at prices below the average reported in the survey," added Edmonds. "Prices should fall further as competition and choice for broadband services continues to grow."
Oftel said the pricing in the survey, which was conducted by consultancy firm Tarifica with extra data from Analysys, is based on figures from 12 October.
Steve Thorpe, membership services manager at the Telecoms Users Association, said: "While initial costs for the provision of these services do seem high for the UK, we trust that as market forces even out and customer demand increases, then prices will reflect this. We'd eventually like to see the UK leading the way for such services."
In November cable operator NTL said it will halve the monthly charge of its broadband service, which offers speeds of up to 512Kbps, from £40 a month to £19.99 a month.
Telewest's Blueyonder service offers customers speeds of 512Kbps for £33 a month with a £50 installation fee. BTopenworld's consumer ADSL service is priced at £39.99 a month with a £150 installation fee.
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