BTopenworld users have slammed the company's ADSL service as "sub-standard", citing low speeds as the basis for a petition of complaint.
vnunet.com readers have written in to protest about poor connection speeds for web browsing and even lower speeds for downloads on the broadband service.
In light of the complaints, telco watchdog Oftel may even get involved: "We have been made aware of problems with BTopenworld, and are monitoring the situation," a spokeswoman said.
"ADSL was quite good when I first got it back in August, but it just keeps getting worse and BT won't do anything about it," said one reader.
"I ran some tests this evening and the results were awful even by Openworld's standards," said another reader. He cited connection speeds of 194Kbits as tested by Bandwidthplace.com, and a Pcpitstop.com rating of 250Kbits.
Richard Stockley, a criminal-research analyst, told vnunet.com that his download speeds were fluctuating between 10.5Kbps and 28.9Kbps, figures well below what is expected from a broadband service.
Stockley said the technical support team told him that speeds of 30Kbps were adequate. "I don't know about you, but if I told one of my clients I was going to produce a 50-page report and told them to stop whining when I gave them a 25-page summary, my company would lose that tender and I'd be out of a job," he said.
He added that as BTopenworld agreed that his scores were exceptionally low, "they said they'd looked into it as some servers needed new software."
Disgruntled users have involved Oftel in the complaints procedure over "why BT won't or can't offer the consumer a product they want at a competitive price, and why, if it wasn't possible here, they've managed to do it on the continent."
Oftel said that it has noted such comments and passed them on to BT. The watchdog has also taken account of the fact that BTopenworld's broadband system allows up to 50 end-users to use the product simultaneously, "meaning that quality could suffer."
An ADSL user group, based at ADSLguide.org.uk, is also petitioning BTopenworld to "come clean with reports about the broadband service."
"I depend on my connection to the internet," added Stockley. "I was going to recommend ADSL to my colleagues but have decided to wait for the service to mature.
"It's a real shame because this technology, if it was reliable and at a competitive price, would be a real asset to my company," he said.
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