A small internet service provider (ISP) is celebrating today after BT agreed to change the way it releases data on premises connected to its cabinets, in a move that could help drive broadband deployment in rural areas.
Rutland Telecom, which made headlines earlier this year after providing 40Mbit/s broadband to the village of Lyddington, suggested that the change from releasing information on a case-by-case to a per-region basis will allow other small ISPs to benefit.
"For the first time in UK history the data linking premises to BT cabinets will be revealed, and can be exploited to bring the benefits of next-generation access to rural communities which suffer poor broadband speeds," the firm said in a blog post.
"Rutland Telecom, the UK's smallest 'unbundler', has now benefited the industry in getting this vital data published."
The change means that small ISPs can gain access to far more data on homes connected to a BT cabinet in a given region to help plan broadband rollouts.
Rutland Telecom added that BT Openreach had stalled for too long in releasing the data, and that it represented a conflict of interest.
"BT Openreach had previously refused to supply it on the grounds of data protection. BT has access to this data itself for its own fibre-to-the-cabinet ambitions. It is effectively a competitor at the same time as being a supplier, " the company said.
"This is a situation which we have always maintained represents a conflict of interest and is potentially discriminatory."
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