What Was New
Full Site History back to 1996
Return to Telecom
Introduction Page

Version 228 in late May 2017 adds YayYay (business and residential), and updates BT (residential), Axis Telecom (business), Everything Everywhere (residential), Hyperoptic (residential),  John Lewis Broadband (residential), Phone Co-Op (residential), PlusNet (residential), Post Office (residential), Sky Talk (residential), SSE Energy Supply (residential), TalkTalk (residential). Virgin Media (residential), Vodafone (residential), XLN Telecom (business) and Zen (residential). 

In the past this comparison has ignored short term introductory price discounts as being irrelevant to long term value for money.  But most broadband packages now come with lower pricing for the first 12 months which is also the minimum term, encourging users to swap packages each year for best value for money.  So the spreadsheet Tariffs table now has a extra column 'Package (First 12 Months)' and the previous Package column is now 'Package (Long Term), each showing the monthly cost (averaged if necessary for less than 12 months).  It will take a few days to update the package comparison web pages.

BT Business is increasing many call prices from 1st July 2017, standard inland calls up 1p to 26p/min with 26p set-up, or £1.04 plus VAT for three minutes that 20 years ago would have cost 10p daytime (local call), but this is the first increase this year (last year rates increased 25%). BT Business Plan call prices up 2p/min or more, Business One Plan 1p/min or more,  BT Business Essentials set-up up 1p to 3p/min but call prices same.


Version 227 in early May 2017 updates BT, Call2Abroad (residential), Direct Save Telecom (residential), Sipgate (residential) and Virgin Media (business and residential).

BT is now only marketing unlimited broadband and fibre packages, the cheaper limited download packages are all discontinued. Virgin Media is no longer marketing packages slower than 100MB and reduced the cost of all broadband packages. Virgin Media Business now offers 350MB cable modems with fixed IP addresses.


Version 226 in late March 2017 updates BT, ACN (business and residential), Sky Talk (residential), TalkTalk (business) and TalkTalk (residential).

BT has increased residential call prices and broadband packages, up 1p to 12p/min for inland and Access Charge, and 16p/min for mobile calls,  up 2p to 21p for call set-up, Unlimited Evening and Weekend Calls up to £3.80/month, Anytime calls to £8.99/month, ADSL broadband up £2/month, Infinity up £2.50/month. International calls have been simplified into just three bands, at 46p/min (USA), 76p/min (most Europe, Asia) or 136p/min.


Version 225 in late February 2017 updates BT, Call Happy (residential), Cheap Cheap Calls (residential),  Cheaper International Calls (residential),  CherryCall (residential), First Number (residential), Sky Talk (residential), Story Telecom (residential), SuperTel (residential) and TalkTalk (residential). The Wowtel (residential) web site has disappeared so it has been removed. 

Ofcom has announced a consultation that may force BT to cut telephone line rental next year for the estimated two million residential customers that do not buy a package of BT services such as broadband or TV.  BT Openreach currently charges wholesale line rental at £8.67/month including VAT, but line rental usually retails for at least £10/month more, although the best value operators charge only £12/month.  From December 2009 to December 2016, line rental prices have risen by between 25% and 49% in real terms, while the wholesale cost has fallen by up to 26% in real terms.

Ofcom is consulting on various remedies to reduce line rental, with it's preferred option being an initial BT retail cut of between £5 and £7/month with subsequent increases for rental and calls limited to inflation only.  The final decision is expected by the end of 2017, so will not become effective until well into 2018.  If BT cuts line rental, other operators would be expected to follow to remain competitive.  BT broadband and TV bundle costs may rise, but bundles from other operators are less unlikely to change since they have far fewer non-bundle customers.

BT Business has increasing PSTN and ISDN line rentals from 1st March 2017 by about 6% (20% for Value line rental), also connection charges.  A business PSTN line increases £1.40 to £23.70/month, an ISDN-30 channel by £1.50 to £26.40/month, a new Business Value line by £3.30 to £19.20/month. Business new line connection is up £5.  Service care costs have also increased.  BT Business One Plan packages no longer include any call allowance, and the costs of inclusive calls have increased. 


Version 224 in late January 2017 updates BT, Daisy Communications (business), Everything Everywhere (residential) and Kesher Communications (business).

BT has introduced a free residential BT Call Protect service to reduce nuisance phone calls, using a BT updated blacklist, a personal blacklist and by specifying individual call types (withheld, international) and sending them straight to a junk voice mailbox.    It is set-up online at bt.com/callprotect . The BT 1571 and Call Minder services have extra features, VIP whitelists numbers never to be blocked, and Do Not Disturb specifies times of the day when all phone calls (except VIP) are send to voicemail.    


Version 223 in late December 2016 updates BT, Adept Telecom (business and residential), CytaUK (residential),  Everything Everywhere (residential), JT (Jersey) (residential), Vodafone (residential) and Xinix World (business).

BT Business Plan international call prices have gone up again only four months after the last increase, by between 4p and 6p/min, making the costs even less competitive, varying between 15p and £1.56/min depending on country.


Version 222 in late November 2016 updates Andrews & Arnold (business and residential), Axis Telecom (business), Direct Save Telecom (residential), KC (business), Phone Co-Op (residential), PlusNet (business) and TalkTalk (residential).


Version 221 in late October 2016 updates BT (business), 118185.co.uk (residential), 1899.com (residential), Call 18866 (residential), Everything Everywhere (residential), TalkTalk (residential) and Virgin Media (residential).

BT Business has increased business call prices for the third time this year, and less than three months since the last increase.  From 19th November 2016, the cost of standard inland and mobile business calls and Access Charge are up another 2p to 25p/min plus 25p set-up, or £1 for three minutes that 20 years ago would have cost 10p daytime (local call).  These three business call increases total 25% this year. BT Business Plan and One Plan inland and mobile calls and access charge are also up to 13p/min, but call set-up remains 8p/call.   All BT business customers should be on the Essentials, Flex or VoIP packages to avoid non-competitive call prices.


Version 220 in late September 2016 updates BT (business), Cheap Calling (residential), Dial Around (residential), DialWise (residential), Discount Dial (residential), DiscountVoIP (residential), DoubleDial (residential), FreeCall (residential), Fuel Broadband (residential), PhoneCheap (residential), Telediscount (residential), TeleSavers (residential), Telestunt (residential), Virgin Media (business and residential) and Vonage (residential).

BT Business increased BT SIP Trunk inland call prices from 1st September 2016, and network features prices from 1st October 2016.


Version 219 in late August 2016 updates BT (business), 118185.co.uk (residential), 1899.com (residential), Call 18866 (residential), Fuel Broadband (residential), KC (residential), PlusNet (residential), Post Office (residential), TalkTalk (business) and Vodafone (residential).  European based operators are having to increase prices due to the weakness of sterling after the Brexit vote. 

BT Business has increased many call prices from 1st September 2016, and call and will be increasing network features from 1st October 2016.  The cost of a standard inland and mobile business calls are up 15% to 23p/min plus 22p set-up, or 91p for three minutes that 20 years ago would have cost 10p daytime (less off-peak) or 25p national, while international calls are up 10% with more countries costing £3/min. BT Call Essentials is increasing 150%, from 2p to 5p/min inland, but still only 17p for three minutes).  BT Business Plan increases local and mobile inland calls by 1p/min, and international about 10%, BT Business One Plan local and mobile inland by 2p/min. 


Version 218 in late July 2016 updates Daisy Communications (business), Everything Everywhere (residential), Number Group (business), OneBill Telecom (business) and Port 5060 (business).

BT Business is increasing many call prices from 1st September 2016, and call and network features from 1st October 2016.  The cost of a standard inland business call will be 23p/min plus 22p set-up, or 91p for three minutes that 20 years ago would have cost 10p daytime (less off-peak) or 25p national. BT Call Essentials is increasing substantially as well, from 2p to 5p/min inland, but still only 17p for three minutes).  KCOM, PlusNet and Post Office are also increasing prices in September.


Version 217 in late June 2016 updates BT, Direct Save Telecom (residential), Virgin Media (business and residential) and Vodafone (residential). 

Ofcom and BT have introduced 20 new service charge bands, SC081 to SC100, for 08/09/118 calls. The new charges mostly fill in gaps in the previous 80 bands, but include some horrible 118 bands, ranging from £8.98 to £15.98 for the first minute, then £4.49 to £7.99 per extra minute. So 118004 calls now cost £16 for a misdialled number and £32 for three minutes.

BT has increased residential line rental and call prices from 3rd July 2016. Line rental is up £1 to £18.99/month, annual Line Rental Saver is up to £17.09/month (£205.08/year), call and network features all increased, most now £4.25/month. Unlimited Evening calls up 30p to £3.50/month, Unlimited Anytime calls up 55p to £8.50/month, International Friends and Family now £1.35/month, International Freedom now £7.50/month.  Inland daytime calls and access charge up a little to 11p/min, UK mobile by 1.35p to 15p/min, and call set-up by 2.2p to 19p/call. Most international calls are up 50%, much of Europe, India and Pakistan are now 60p/min, Ireland and USA 30p/min, a few countries down from 80p to 60p/min, others still £1.20/min. 

Added details of BT Restriction of Service at Customer's Request which allows all outgoing (OCB) and or incoming calls (ICB) to be barred, or the line taken temporarily out of service (TOS), single payment of £23.24 business or £26.60 residential, when the restriction is raised, no charge to restore service.  Typically used for broadband only and alarm lines.  

BT Business has increased line rental for new BT Flex contracts by £3 to £21/month, inland calls up slightly to 2.5p/min, UK mobile up to 7.4p/min. BT is increasing most business call prices from 1st September 2016 and business call and network features from 1st October 2016. 

BT has increased the cost of calling 118500 and 118404, from £8.47 to £11.48 for three minutes. 


Version 216 in late May 2016 adds Telesave (residential) and updates Everything Everywhere (residential), IDNet (business), John Lewis Broadband (residential), KC (residential), OneBill Telecom (business), Skype (PC only residential), Virgin Media (business), Vodafone (residential) and XLN Telecom (business). Removed Auracall and Hive Telecom for old tariffs.  Eclipse is now part of KCOM so has been removed.

After a very quiet 12 months, Ofcom and BT are introducing 20 new service charge bands in July 2016, SC081 to SC100, for 08/09/118 calls. The new charges mostly fill in gaps in the previous 80 bands, but include some horrible 118 bands, ranging from £8.98 to £15.98 for the first minute, then £4.49 to £7.99 per extra minute. So 118 calls to that last band will cost £96 for 10 minutes, or £16 for a misdialled number. Just because the new charge bands exist does not mean operators will necessarily use them, but most will have been created to meet specific requirements of operators like 118118, who last raised it's cost in March to £6.98+£3.49/xmin (£34 for 10 minutes). 

BT is increasing residential line rental and call prices from July 2016, line rental is up £1 to £18.99/month and Anytime calls up 55p to £8.50/month.  Virgin Media is also increasing call prices from July.


Version 215 in late April 2016 adds Hyperoptic (residential) and updates BT,  0844 Calls (residential), 118185.co.uk (residential), 1899.com (residential), Budgetcom (residential) and Call 18866 (residential).  Another quiet month, no increases in line rental or broadband cost found except for BT, but that means a cascade of changes from others over the coming months.

BT has raised business PSTN and ISDN line rentals by about 6%, also connection charges.  A business PSTN line increases £1.32 to £22.30/month, an ISDN-30 channel by £1.47 to £24.90/month.  Call cost capping has been removed from most, or maybe all, business packages, which BT warns 'may be to the significant detriment of some customers' but does simplify these old tariffs a lot. Most Business Plan customers should probably move to BT Business Call Essentials or Flex which have much cheaper calls.  BT Business One Plan Inclusive plan cost rental has increased.  Mobile call costs for the various Business Plan packages have been simplified with some increases.

BT Home Phone Saver 2019 is replacing Home Phone Saver 2018, price is up £1/month to £21.99/month but this will not increase until January 2019, the package is a minimum 18 month contract and includes Anytime calls, BT Privacy Caller Display and Anonymous Call Reject. 

BT has increased residential broadband prices, Standard Broadband is up £2 to £15/month but now 12GB allowance, Unlimited Broadband up £2 to £20/month. Infinity 1 remains £21/month but speed up to 52M and allowance down to 25GB, Unlimited Infinity 1 also 52M up £1 to £26/month, Unlimited Infinity 2 still 76M up £2.50 to £32.50/month.


Version 214 in late March 2016 adds Fleur Telecom (residential) and Port 5060 (business). Very quiet month, no increases in landline or broadband cost found.

BT is raising  business PSTN and ISDN line rentals by about 6%  from 1st May 2016, also connection charges and Business Plan package and call costs. A business PSTN line increases to £22.30/month, an ISDN-30 channel to £24.90/month.


Version 213 in late February 2016 updates BT, Direct Save Telecom (residential), Cheapest Chat (residential), ICUK (business and residential), JT (Jersey) (residential), Post Office (residential), QX Telecom (residential), Simply-Fone (residential), Story Telecom (residential)  and Zen (residential). 

BT appears to have raised residential broadband Infinity 1 with 40GB by £3 to £21/month and Unlimited Infinity 1 by £2 to £25/month, although the web site has different prices to the Price Guide with offers changing each week, so pricing seems flexible. 


Version 212 in late January 2016 updates BT (business), Matrix Dial (residential), TopUpDial (residential), Virgin Media (business and residential), Wowtel (residential), Xinix World (business) and Zen (residential).  My Mondo has closed due to the new Access Charges making it uneconomic. Mootel has disappeared and been removed. Rebtel now only offers calls using a mobile app so has been removed.

BT has raised the cost of standard business calls between 17% and 42% from 8th February 2016, this is the basic business tariff your lines are on unless you deliberately request a free cheaper BT calls package. Inland and UK mobile are up to 20p/min 24/7 (previously cheaper off-peak) plus 21p set-up, so 81p for a three minute local call that 20 years ago would have cost 10p daytime (less off-peak) or 25p national (BT Call Essentials today is 8p).  USA and most of Europe will be £1/min, but a few pence from most other sensible operators including BT Call Essentials and Flex. India and Pakistan are up to £2/min, Asia and Middle East to £3/min. The new Access Charge is also 20p/min, a 30 second call 0845 call that used to cost 5p has jumped to 42p to 50p depending on the Service Charge.   BT Cloud Phone has reduced UK mobile to 7p/min.


Version 211 in early January 2016 updates Fuel Broadband (residential), Gradwell (business), Localphone (residential) and Lycatel (residential). Qdial has been removed for old tariffs. Very quiet in December, unlike some previous years with VAT or line rental changes for the new year. 


Version 210 in late November 2015 updates Everything Everywhere (residential),  Post Office (residential), Sky Talk (residential), TalkTalk (business and residential), Virgin Media (residential) and Vonage (residential).  AOL (residential) was taken over by TalkTalk years ago and has now been removed. Redbox Telecom has disappeared and been removed.


Version 209 in late October 2015 adds Just Dial Pre-pay (residential) and Planet Talk (residential), and updates BT Business, Direct Save Telecom (residential), Just Dial Instant (residential), PlusNet (business) and Virgin Media (residential).  Joy Telecom has been removed for old tariffs. Ratebuster is now Planet Talk.

BT increased the cost of printed bills, for residential broadband customers up to £1.70 per bill, for business customers up to £4 per bill for a summary bill, to £8 for an itemised bill.  From 19th November 2015, BT is increasing the inland call costs for all Business Plan and Broadband Voice packages, Business Plan Lite is up to 11p/min, Business Plan and Traditional to 8p/min, similar increases for Access Charges. Some reductions for certain spend levels have gone.   BT Business Broadband Voice and BT Hosted VOIP are no longer available for new supply.  Added BT Cloud Phone which is a small business VoIP package.


Version 208 in late September 2015 updates BT (business and residential), 0844 Calls (residential), 118185.co.uk (residential), 1899.com (residential), Call 18866 (residential), Call2Abroad (residential), Call2Call (residential), Calls Discount (residential),  Cheap Calls (residential), Dial 123 (residential), Direct Save Telecom (residential),  KC (residential),  Sipgate (residential), Skype (PC only residential), SSE Energy Supply (residential), Virgin Media (residential), Voxhub (business) and Xinix World (business).  Easy-Dial call through has ceased and been removed.

BT increased residential line rental and call costs about 6% from 20th September 2015.  Line rental is up £1 to £17.99/month, annual Line Saver to £16.19/month, Line Rental Plus to £18.99/month, Weekend and Evening calls by 20p to £3.20/month, Anytime calls by 50p to £7.95/month, International Freedom to £6.60/month.  Inland calls and access charge are up from 9.58p to 10.24p/min, UK mobile from 12p to 13.56p/min and call set-up from 15.97p to 17.07p. Calling features are up to £3.95/month.  BT last increased residential rental about 10 months ago.

BT Business Plan call price caps have increased substantially, from 35p to £1/call for inland and mobile calls, higher for international calls. The price list says Business One Plan inland calls are now 65p/call and SIP Trunk 50p/call, which seem very high, perhaps a mistake 


Version 207 in early September 2015 updates BT (business), Adept Telecom (business and residential), Axis Telecom (business), AOL (residential), Eclipse (business), OneBill Telecom (business), PlusNet (residential), Sky Talk (residential), TalkTalk (business and residential), Telappliant (business), Vonage (residential) and XLN Telecom (business). True Telecom (business and residential) and Qudo (business) have been removed for old tariffs.  Other operators that have ignored the new access and service charges will be slowly removed.

Now service charges have settled down and the old charge bands have become unused, all the old non-geographic, premium and directory enquiry call cost rows have been removed from the tariff spreadsheet, almost halving the file size.  For those that still need this information for historic purposes, version 206 of the spreadsheet remains in the business zip file. The tariff spreadsheet has a new sheet Service Charges listing the 80 current different charge bands, with VAT inclusive and exclusive pricing, and the TalkTalk Business pricing that is different from every other operator. 

Operators that published Access Charges after 30th June are: residential, Virgin Media 10.25p/min, Andrews & Arnold 4.8p/min, Direct Save 9p/min, DrayTel 4.8p/min, Fuel Broadband 7p/min, Vodafone 9.5p/min,  Vonage 9.5p/min, Adept 6p/min; business, Andrews & Arnold 4p/min, Fuel Broadband 6p/min, Gradwell 6.25p/min,  Kingston Comms 5p/min, Eclipse 5.83p/min, Adept 5p/min, OneBill Telecom 10p/min, XLN Telecom 10p/min, Telappliant 4p/min.

BT has increased the prices of all business network and calling features, and Call Minder.


Version 206 in early August 2015 adds John Lewis Broadband (residential), Supertel (residential) and Vodafone (residential), and updates BT (residential), 0844 Calls (residential), 118185.co.uk (residential), 1899.com (residential), Budgetcom (residential), Call 18866 (residential), Call Happy (residential), Cheap Calling (residential), Cheap International Calls (residential), Cheaper International Calls (residential), CherryCall (residential), Daisy Communications (business), Dial Around (residential), DialWise (residential), Direct Save Telecom (residential), Discount Dial (residential), DrayTEL (business and residential), Everything Everywhere (residential), Fuel Broadband (business and residential),  Gradwell (business), KC (business), PhoneCheap (residential), Phone Co-Op (residential), SSE Energy Supply (residential), TalkTalk (residential), Telediscount (residential), TeleSavers (residential), Telestunt (residential), TeleTop (residential), TopUpNow (residential) and Virgin Media (residential).  Telesave has been removed for old tariffs.

The Non-geographic Call Services (NGCS) charging changes from 1st July 2015 were introduced without fanfare (except behind the scenes) and just some minor advertising from Ofcom.  There was a flurry of price lists at the beginning of July, with some interesting small print.  BT Residential Access Charge is per second with a minimum of one minute, the Service Charge is per second with no minimum.  BT Business is ignoring the Ofcom regulations (which only apply to residential customers) and varying some Access Charges according to time of day and adding a set-up charge to other tariffs.  TalkTalk Business has ignored the Access Charge completely and instead added a mark-up of about 38% to the Service Charge.  Unfortunately the tariff comparisons on this web site can not yet cope with these new creative business charging schemes. Ofcom originally expected some operators to include the Access Charge in free call bundles, but only EE is doing this for 0845/0870 calls only, so far.  Some operators still include inclusive 0845 and/or 0870 calls without Access or Service Charge if 01/02/03 is inclusive, including BT, PlusNet, Post Office, Sky and Virgin Media.

BT has increased broadband charges by about £2/month, Broadband with 10G is now £13, unlimited broadband £18, fibre Infinity 1 with 40G is £18, unlimited Infinity 1 still £23/month, Infinity 2 unlimited £30/month but includes free evening calls.


Version 205 in late June 2015 updates BT (residential and business), Andrews & Arnold (business and residential), Daisy Communications (business),  Everything Everywhere (residential), Fuel Broadband (residential), OneBill Telecom (business), Phone Co-Op (residential),  Post Office (residential), SSE Energy Supply (residential), TalkTalk (business) and Zen (business and residential). Coms.com has been removed for old tariffs.  All Callthrough operator costs have a notional 10p/min added to reflect the average Access Charge and allow a fair comparison with other call costs that do not include an Access Charge.

Non-geographic Call Services (NGCS) charging changes from 1st July 2015 to make it easier to understand for consumers.  Calls to 084, 087, 09 and 118 calls will comprise a published Service Charge that is the same from all operators, and an extra Access Charge that is determined by the operator that sends your phone bill, which is often similar to the cost of a national call.

The Service Charge is currently chosen from 80 different charge bands varying from 1p/min to £3.60/min, fixed fee from 5p to £6 per call, and a combination of fixed fee and per minute, up to a maximum of £6.98 for the first minute and then £3.49/min.  All these prices include VAT.  Each service provider has selected new Service Charges for it's existing number ranges and is responsible for advertising this cost to it's customers.  Sometimes the new Service Charges are similar to the current charges, often rounded up since many old charge bands had fractional costs (due to VAT changes), but they may vary significantly. 

For instance, an 0845 call currently costs the same irrespective of extra digits, but the new Service Charge varies from 1p to 7p/min depending on the next three code digits, and 0870 varies between 1p and 13p/min, both with the additional Access Charge. 

Our CodeLook tool may be used to compare the old and new charges for any NGCS number for which a Service Charge has been allocated and shows the price of calls of various lengths combined with the Access Charge for each operator. 

The Access Charge is always charged for each minute, even for Service Charge fixed fee calls, and for fixed line calls is often the same as national telephone calls (01/02/03) which averages about 10p/min, some are a little less, some have yet to publish their Access Charge. These calls will normally be charged for a minimum of one minute, but will not have a call setup cost (unless part of the Service Charge) so some short calls may even be cheaper (set-up is 16p)  There is no change to 07 mobile and personal call costs.  This new charging regime only applies to residential calling, business calling may continue to use the old charge bands, new Service Charges or choose their own prices, as TalkTalk Business has done.

Operators that have published Access Charges by the 30th June are: Residential including VAT, BT Together 9.58p/min, BT Basic zero,  TalkTalk 5p/min, Sky 9.5p/min, Kingston Comms 7p/min, PlusNet 9.58p/min, Phone Co-Op 7.2p/min, SSE Energy 6.9p/min, Zen 8p/min, John Lewis Broadband 9.58p/min, Hyperoptic 10p/min, EE Home 11p/min, Andrews & Arnold  2p/min, Post Office 9.5p/min, EE Mobile 44p/min, O2 Mobile 25p/min, Vodafone Mobile 23p/min (45p/min from August), Asda Mobile 8p/min, Giffgaff Mobile 15p/min, 3 Mobile 25p/min, Phone Co-Op Mobile 21p/min, Tesco Mobile 25p/min, Talk Mobile 15p/min, Lycamobile 23p/min, and Virgin Media Mobile 36p/min.  Business excluding VAT, BT Business is mostly the same as the national call cost, so BT Business Standard 17p/min, BT Business Essentials 2p/min, BT Business Plan and Lite 8p/min, BT Business One Plan 7p/min, BT Business One Plan Traditional 5p/min, BT Business Flex 2.2p/min, BT Business Choices 15p/min, BT Wholesale 2.876p/min, IDNet 5p/min, PlusNet 7.98p/min, Daisy 7p/min, Andrews & Arnold 1.66p/min, BT Business Mobile 35p/min.  TalkTalk Business has announced it will be charging Service Charge calls with a mark-up of about 38% instead of adding a fixed Access Charge, plus 6p set-up (ex VAT), so a £1/min call would cost £1.38/min, 1p/min would cost 1.38p/min.

BT has increasing business line rental, connection costs and service care from 1st July 2015.  Line rental is up 99p to £20.98/month, ISDN-2e to £45.48/month and ISDN30e to £23.43/month/channel. New business line connection is up £5 to £130, take over of a business line with dial tone where no wiring changes are needed is up £3 to £30 and up to £10 for various BT calling plans.  

Updated BT Business Call Essentials to include full call costs, this is now effectively the basic BT business package for all users with no extra cost over line rental and two year minimum contract, and includes 100 free inland minutes, with inland calls and the access charge costing only 2p/min, inland mobile 6p/min. both very competitive.  UK Unlimited Call Package costs £10/month per line and provides unlimited inland 01/02/03/05 calls and UK mobile calls, maximum 60 minutes. IDD Calls Package costs £10/month and includes 2,500 minutes to about 100 countries. Most earlier packages such as BT Business Plan and it's variants and BT Business Complete are not available for new customers.

For BT Business Plan, the capped call cost for inland and mobile calls has been increased from 20p and 30p respectively, both to 75p per call. For BT Business One Plan, the inland call cost is up 3p to 12p/call and the mobile call cap to 40p.  For BT SIP Trunk, the inland call cost is up 2p to 6p/call and the mobile call cap to 40p

BT Home Phone Saver is now BT Home Phone Saver with price up £1 to £20.99/month including line rental and anytime calls with an 18 months contract.  Mobile phone calls are no longer half price.


Version 205 - 24th June 2015 is an interim site update that includes Access Charges in the tariff spreadsheets, Service Charges in the various numbering files, and an update to CodeLook so it correctly displays the costs of most calls made after 1st July 2015.  There will be a further update in early July once the remaining operators (like BT) finally publish this information.


Version 204 in late May 2015 adds Direct Save Telecom (residential), and updates BT, Everything Everywhere (residential), IDNet (business), KC (business and residential), PlusNet (business and residential), Sky Talk (residential), TalkTalk (business and residential) and Zen (business and residential).

BT has increased residential Line Rental Saver by £1.13 a month to £15.29/month, paid annually as £183.48, which is a 10% discount off the normal monthly line rental cost.

BT is increasing business line rental, connection costs and service care from 1st July 2015.  Line rental is up 99p to £20.98/month, ISDN-2e to £45.48/month and ISDN30e to £23.43/month/channel.

BT Openreach envisages that it's network will be a single IP core by 2025 with all telephony provided by SIP, meaning that all ISDN services will cease within 10 years, as will most traditional System X and AXE10 telephone exchanges.  By 2025, most of us should have fibre broadband over FTTP or FTTRN/FTTDP (G.Fast) and will be using SIP already as the old copper network becomes obsolete.


Version 203 in late April 2015 updates BT, Daisy Communications (business), Sky Talk (residential), TalkTalk (business and residential),  and XLN Telecom (business). Callax seems to have disappeared so it's various call through brands have been removed: 05 Pence, AbroadCall, AbroadTel, Clever Rates, Pennyphone and Phonebird.

BT has increased some call costs for BT Business One Plan and variations, inland call cost and capped cost are up slightly, and the capped cost of BT Business Plan has also increased.


Version 202 in late March 2015 adds BT Business Call Essentials and DiscountVoIP, and updates Kesher Communications (business), OneBill Telecom (business), PlusNet (residential), Sky Talk (residential), and XLN Telecom (business). Orbis Telecom has been removed for old tariffs.

BT has added new Business Call Essentials for a minimum of one BT line, max 50 lines, minimum period two years. Call set-up is 2p, except non-geographic which are 5p minimum call cost instead, inland calls 2p/min, UK mobile 6p/min, most major countries 7p/min or less. UK Unlimited Call Package costs £10/month per line and provides unlimited inland 01/02/03/05 calls and UK mobile calls, maximum 60 minutes. Very competitive call prices. 


Version 201 in late February 2015 updates BT, ACN (business and residential), Adept Telecom (business and residential), FreeCall (residential), PlusNet (business), Skype (PC only residential), TalkTalk (residential), VoIPCheap (residential) and WebCall Direct (residential).  Tesco Broadband and Homephone has been sold to TalkTalk and been removed.  GoTalk has been removed for old tariffs.  Jajah has been replaced by the Tu Go mobile phone app.

BT has simplified residential international pricing, by introducing just four different country charge bands effective all week, 20p, 40p, 80p and £1.20 per minute (30p/min extra for mobile). But this means most off-peak European calls have increased from 15p to 40p/min, unless you pay an extra £1.20/month for Friends & Family International when most of Europe drops to 2.9p/min - so the monthly cost is covered by four minutes of international calls. 

About 35,000 new international codes have been added derived from the BT Wholesale World Numbering Plan that identifies international premium, non-geographic, national and special numbers charged at higher or lower rates than normal landline or mobile calls, and identifies many overseas mobile operators that may have differing charges.

Non-geographic call charging changes from July 2015 so a new Service Charge description has been added which is the price including VAT that has be published for all such numbers, and to which is added to an operator and tariff specific Access Charge that together make the new call cost. No Access Charges have been published yet, but Ofcom expected them to vary between 1p and 5p/min. Currently Ofcom has only published Service Charges for about half the 08 and 09 number ranges allocated, and no 118 numbers yet.

For residential and business members, there is a new International Fixed numbers table in the spreadsheet, new CSV file and web page, and the Service Codes and Directory Enquiry Codes have a new Service Charge column.  Numbering members should check their download page and the readme file for information on new columns.     CodeLook is not yet displaying Service Charges, but will be updated in the next few days.


Version 200 in late January 2015 updates BT, JT (Jersey) (residential), TalkTalk (business and residential), Telecoms World (business), Virgin Media (business and residential) and Xinix World (business). Kent Telephones is now Kent Tec.

BT has increased the cost of it's own directory enquiry calls, 118500 now costs £4.36 for the first minute (was £2.98) and 118505 costs £5.74 for the first minute (was £3.98). BT has also added two more directory enquiry bands and increased the costs of two old unused bands (why?). BT has also increased the cost of most operator connected calls and services.


Version 199 in late December 2014 updates AOL (residential), Everything Everywhere (residential), Post Office (residential), QX Telecom (residential), TalkTalk (residential), Vonage (residential) and Zen Home Talk (residential). Smallworld Fibre (aka Smallworld Cable) was taken over by Virgin Media earlier in the year and has now been removed.

Ofcom updated the internal numbering systems in December and published it's first update in a month on Christmas Eve, replacing all the CSV files with spreadsheets, some with missing and truncated columns, missing and extra rows.  Ofcom is unable to fix these problems until staff return in the new year, so there are no Ofcom numbering changes this month. 

Ofcom has published the first Service Charge Master List that lists many of the new unbundled non-geographic call charges being introduced in June 2015 (no 118 numbers yet). Ofcom has decided against allocating charge bands for the new 90 odd price points instead just publishing 20% VAT inclusive prices for each numbering range, despite businesses not paying VAT, the risk of VAT rate changes and new EU rules on charging local VAT rates in Europe. Magenta Systems has already allocated charge bands to most of these new service price points which are listed in the bands.xls spreadsheet (SC01 to SC67) and these new bands will shortly be added to the main numbering files and web pages, hopefully in late January. 

From January 2015, computer and telecommunications services in Europe (including Switzerland and Norway) need to charge VAT rates for the country of the customer instead of the supplier.  This applies to several operators listed on this site, including Delmont brands, Rebtel, Sipgate and Skype.  None have yet updated their prices for 2015.  Some businesses may decide not to offer services outside their own countries due to the new VAT administrative overhead, Sipgate announced the closure of residential services but later decided to continue them. 


Version 198 in late November 2014 updates BT, AOL (residential), IDNet (business), Sky Talk (residential), and TalkTalk (residential). Band Telecom has disappeared and been removed, DTC Direct (Docklands Telecom Centre) is being dissolved and has been removed. Eclipse and IDNet are no longer marketing residential services so these have been removed.

BT has increased many residential prices, line rental is up £1 to £16.99/month, line rental saver about £10 to £169.90/year, Friends & Family International to £1.20/month, International Freedom to £6.20/month, Calling Features to £3.70/month each, call set-up fee by almost 1p to 15.97p and inland calls from 9p to 9.58p/min. All international call costs up about 6%.  BT is however holding the £19.99/month rental price of Home Phone Saver until January 2017, which includes line rental, anytime calls and several calling and network features.

BT has added residential Line Rental Plus at £18.99/month (£2 more than standard) which includes priority fault fixes 24 hours earlier than standard (but only five days a week), bill alerts, free call barring and choose to refuse.

BT Business has increased Calling and Network Feature prices by about 6%, most features up to £3.10/month. 

BT has added a caveat that the maximum price of calling 118500 will be £20 irrespective of call length. Still a ridiculous cost to get a phone number you can usually Google for free.

AOL, Sky and TalkTalk have also increased line rental in December, Post Office follows in January 2015, Virgin Media in February.

Local number dialling has now ceased in Aberdeen (01224), Bournemouth (01202), Bradford (01274), Brighton (01273), Middlesbrough (01642) and Milton Keynes (01908). Currently no other such areas are planned in the next two years.


Version 197 in late October 2014 adds Eclipse (business) and Zen Home Talk (residential) and updates BT, Fuel Broadband (residential and business, previously called Primus Saver), Kesher Communications (business), SSE Energy Supply (residential), TalkTalk (residential) and Zen Business.

BT has increased Standard Business inland and mobile calls by 2p to 17p/min, call set-up by 1p to 19p/min, and international calls by around 13%.  The payment processing fee for non-DD increases by £1 to £4/month, and late payment charge to £20.


Version 196 in late September 2014 updates Daisy Communications (business), Phone Co-Op (business and residential), PlusNet (residential), Sky Talk (residential), SSE Energy Supply (residential), Story Telecom (residential) and Virgin Media (business and residential).

Ofcom has launched a new UK Calling web site that explains the major changes for 'Clear Call Rates' coming next summer.  There is a page 'Cost of Calling' that says 'How much does a phone call cost at the moment?' for a telephone number you specify, but it's actually approximate minimum and maximum costs, so 50p to £5/min for directory enquiries, and no real attempt to cost calls.


Version 195 in late August 2014 updates AOL (residential), Call Happy (residential), Calls Discount (residential), Cheaper International Calls (residential), Cheapest Chat (residential), Kent Telephones (business), Post Office (residential), Simply-Fone (residential) and TalkTalk (residential). 24Talk and Yourcalls.net, brands of Comms Factory, were taken over by PlusNet in November 2013 and have now been removed.


Version 194 in late July 2014 updates BT, 0844 Calls (residential), 1899.com (residential), Budgetcom (residential), Cheap Calling (residential), CytaUK (residential), Daisy Communications (business), Dial Around (residential), DialWise (residential), Discount Dial (residential), FreeCall (residential), KC (business and residential), PhoneCheap (residential), Sky Talk (residential), TalkTalk (residential), TeleSavers (residential), Telestunt (residential), TeleTop (residential), TopUpNow (residential), VoIPCheap (residential), WebCall Direct (residential)  and Xinix World (business).  eZe-Talk and Resource Utilities have been removed for old tariffs.

Ofcom is proposing to block revenue sharing for the 03 number range, to prevent unscrupulous operators making call revenue at the expense of operators offering bundled calls 01/02/03 calls.  End users are being offered financial inducement to make very long silent calls to certain 03 numbers which still cost their operator money, and may cause that operator to raise bundle or other charges to compensate for the extra fake calls.

New DQ151 directory enquiry band this month for 118118 charged at over 25% higher than the previous band, so a three minute call costs almost £10 (£12 with TalkTalk).

Most BT business prices have increased again, line rentals, Business Plan packages, inland and overseas call prices, only non-geographic and mobile calls seem unchanged.   Business line connection is up to £120 plus VAT (£110 for 24 month contract), business line rental is up 99p to £19.99/month (£19/month for 24 month contract), ISDN-2e rental up to 45.48/month, ISDN-30e channel rental up to £22.31/month.

BT has started charging businesses for previously free business classified listings, which will now cost £122.88 per year (charged quarterly), plus VAT.  This cost will be automatically added to business phone bills, unless you opt out within four weeks of receiving a notification letter.  Businesses will still be listed free in the A-Z section of the phonebook, but only in the classified section upon payment.  There is an online form to opt out that requires all your account information, which the accounts section of  the web site already has, but that would be too easy.


Version 193 in late June 2014 updates BT,  Axis Telecom (business), Eclipse (residential), Everything Everywhere (residential), Gradwell (business), OneBill Telecom (business), Phone Co-Op (business and residential), Telecoms World (business) and XLN Telecom (business). Focus has been removed for old tariffs.

Ofcom has announced that all 0500 free phone numbers will be withdrawn from 3rd June 2017, optionally being migrated to 080 85xxxxxx.  No new 0500 numbers have been allowed for over 10 years.

For new customers, BT has increased the monthly cost of Unlimited Evening & Weekend Calls Plan by £1 to £3/month, and Unlimited Anytime Calls by 50p to £7.50/month.  A new Home Phone Saver plan has been introduced for £19.99/month that includes line rental and unlimited anytime calls with UK mobile charged at 6p/min, all similar to the Unlimited Anytime Calls plan but effectively £3.50/month cheaper, the catch is it's not allowed with Line Rental saver. Home Phone Saver also includes free Privacy Call Features, Caller Display, Choose to Refuse and Anonymous Call Reject (which are normally over £8/month) and is exempt from the payment processing fee for cheque and cash payments. The limited BT Infinity 1 package is now called Infinity Extra up £1 to £16/month but bandwidth doubled to 40G. 

From 1st August 2014, most BT business prices are going up again, line rentals, packages, inland and overseas call prices, only non-geographic and mobile calls seem unchanged.   Business line connection is up to £120 plus VAT (£110 for 24 month contract), business line rental is up 99p to £19.99/month (£19/month for 24 month contract), ISDN-2e rental up to 45.48/month, ISDN-30e channel rental up to £22.31/month.


Version 192 in late May 2014 updates AOL (residential), JT (Jersey) (residential), PlusNet (residential), TalkTalk (residential), Virgin Media (business and residential), Wizards (business and residential) and Wowtel (residential). The Callax T has disappeared and been removed.

From 1st August 2014, most BT business prices are going up again, line rentals, packages, inland and overseas call prices, only non-geographic and mobile calls seem unchanged.   Business line connection is up to £120 plus VAT (£110 for 24 month contract), business line rental is up 99p to £19.99/month (£19/month for 24 month contract), ISDN-2e rental up to 45.48/month, ISDN-30e channel rental up to £22.31/month.

Fixed access market reviews 2014: draft Statement from Ofcom this month, over 1,500 pages, on the wholesale prices BT Openreach can charge for the next few years, which may result in some prices dropping. Wholesale line rental rental should drop by 3% (to £91.04/year) but the cost of a line transfer goes up to £4.63. Caller display price will be regulated for the first time to stop BT profiteering, with annual wholesale cost cut from £6  to 45p, look forward to that! Chargeable visits are also dropping in price, down from £120 to £95.73 including first hour, then additional hours down from £60 to £43.13, and faults should be fixed within two working days. External and internal shifts down from £120 to £105.20. All these are wholesale prices, so the savings may not be fully passed on to end users.


Version 191 in late April 2014 updates BT, AOL (residential), Daisy Communications (business), Everything Everywhere (residential), Post Office (residential), TalkTalk (residential) and Vonage (residential).

BT has increased BT Standard Business call costs again (last increased was Oct 2013)  by 10% or more, call set-up up to 18p, inland day time up 2p to 15p/min, evening up 4p to 10p/min, weekend up 4p to 10p/min, and UK mobile up to 15/min.  A three minute day time now costs 63p or 75p with VAT. 15 years ago that call would have cost 10p, and new technology only ever reduces costs.  Anyone still using BT Standard business should really move to BT Business Plan where a local call is 6p/min and 6p set-up, or less for large call spends.

A new Band Change History web page has been added for paid members which reports recent changes from BT for special dialling codes, both inland and international.


Version 190 in late March 2014 updates CytaUK (residential), DoubleDial (residential), DrayTEL (residential), Hive Telecom (residential), Post Office (residential), Primus Saver (business and residential), Qudo (business), SSE Energy Supply (residential), Tesco (residential) and Virgin Media (business and residential).

Dash Telecom (business) has disappeared and been removed. Easy-Dial Calling Account has been removed since it no longer publishes rates in Sterling. First:Telecom has been removed for old tariffs. SuperLine as a brand has disappeared, although the parent company Coms.Com still offers VoIP.


Version 189 in late February 2014 updates BT, 1899.com (residential), Adept Telecom (business and residential), Budgetcom (residential), KC (business and residential), OneBill Telecom (business), PlusNet (business and residential), TalkTalk (business), Tesco (residential) and XLN Telecom (business).

Another peaceful month for BT, just one new directory enquiry band, making a total of 150 different charges for various 118 services.

From 1st February 2014, an Ofcom regulatory Narrowband Market Review ruling has caused inland wholesale call price increases, of about 0.25p/min daytime, and about 0.1p/min evening and weekend, effecting both outgoing and incoming calls (such as 0800).  Daisy and TalkTalk Business have both stated these increases are being passed onto all business customers, but have yet to publish detailed new call prices. While some operators may absorb the increases, others may increase prices, but as yet there are no new price lists from any operators.


Version 188 in late January 2014 updates BT, Adept Telecom (business and residential), Axis Telecom (business), Call2Abroad (residential), Everything Everywhere (residential)  and Virgin Media (business and residential).  O2 and Be have been removed since customers have now been migrated to Sky.

The new CodeLook broadband and post code look-ups have been improved. When looking up the cabinets in a locality, and post codes for a cabinet or locality, the map now shows green circles for each post code to give a geographic overview of the area covered.  Note single post codes can cover large areas, and the circle can only be an approximation.  Likewise the circles don't specify cabinet locations, merely the wide area the cabinet covers.

The All Fibre Cabinet tables list the 'Primary Cross-Connect Cabinets' (PCP) for the exchange, and also now geographic areas cabled directly to the exchange without cabinets. Initially, BT has been enabling cabinets for FTTC and FTTP, but is expected to also offer these services to exchange only customers.

FTTC is Fibre to Cabinet, where BT takes fibre to a new green cabinets, then installs a VDSL2 modem using existing copper cable to the new cabinet. Performance reduces for greater distance from the cabinet.

FTTP is Fibre to the Premises, where BT takes fibre directly to each property and installs an Optical Network Termination (ONT) unit. Performance is the same for all customers, distance does not matter.

BT usually designates areas either as FTTC or FTTP and installs one or the other, for the same cost. Some FTTC areas also offer FTTP On Demand for customers wanting better performance than FTTC can offer, and who are prepared to pay a substantially higher installation cost (£700 to £3,000 depending on distance) to have FTTP service.


Version 187 in early January 2014 updates BT, Andrews & Arnold (business and residential), Coms.Com (business and residential), Eclipse (residential), Sky Talk (residential), Skype (PC only residential), Smallworld Cable (residential) and TalkTalk (residential).  Note that although tariffs for BE Un Limited and O2 are still published, most users have now been moved to Sky. Phonecard Services and it's Just Phone services have disappeared and been removed.  Liquid Telecom now only offers wholesale international carrier services, mainly in Southern Africa, so has been removed.

BT has increased various residential prices, line rental is up 54p to £15.99/month and all international call prices.  For users still with the old Plans (discontinued April 2013) and BT Broadband Talk (also discontinued), call set-up to 14.76p, day time calls to 8.95p/min, and packages by about 6%. BT Basic rental and call cost have increased. The free BT Answer 1571 and BT Privacy with Caller Display services are chargeable, with automatic charging of £1.75/month each.  Various call and network feature costs have also increased.  Entry level broadband is down in price, ADSL up to 16M with 10GB usage down to £10/month, Infinity 1 up to 38M now has only 20G usage but is down to £15/month. These reduced broadband prices appear to be for the 18 or 12 month contract period only, increasing after that period.

BT Business One Plan Inclusive Call Packages now only include 200 inclusive call minutes per month, instead of 500 minutes, for the same price.  BT Business has increased the cost of most call and network features. 

Generally, the prices listed in the comparison exclude short term special offers, such as free or reduced rental for a few months. The monthly prices listed are those charged for the majority of the contract period and after the minimum period, since this is the easiest way to compare the different packages, without trying to compare total first year costs which can get very complicated.  The one exception is where the special offer price is for the whole minimum contract period, but may (or may not) increase after that period expires, but you then have a choice of moving to another cheaper contract.

After three years of consultations, Ofcom has determined that the charging of most non-geographic calls will change in another 18 months time, 26 June 2015, so that two prices are shown for each call type, an access charge paid to your provider, and a service charge paid to the number owner. Also, all 080 and 116 calls will be free to the caller from all UK fixed and mobile phones.

The 080 and 116 change does have a cost for the owners of such numbers, who will pay more for calls from mobile telephones. This applies to both business and residential calls.

The main proposal effects 084, 087, 09 and 118 numbers, and means they can be advertised as having a fixed service provider cost irrespective of fixed or mobile, plus the access cost charged by the line provider that should be the same for all types of call. The access charge may also be included in call bundles (like 01/02/03), but not necessarily for all non-geographic ranges. There will be up 100 fixed price points up to £5/min for the service charge, about a half the number currently in use. The access charge should be around 1p for fixed lines and a few pence for mobiles. This consultation applies only to residential calls, whether operators will match business tariffs is uncertain.

Initially, Ofcom has proposed 67 service charge bands derived from existing call charges and call volumes, 29 with straight pence per minute charge, 21 with a fixed fee and pence per minute, nine with fixed cost for first minute, then pence per minute, and eight fixed fee.  Ofcom expects to expand this to 80 bands by implementation in June 2015, and 100 bands a year later.  The initial proposed bands have been added as charge bands SC01 to SC67 in the bands.xls file for members. Note the same service charge bands may be used for 084, 087, 09 and 118 numbers.


Version 186 in late November 2013 adds Number Group (business) and Pennyphone (residential) and updates Daisy Communications (business), DTC Direct (residential), Phone Co-Op (business and residential), Post Office (residential) and Sky Talk (residential). FastVoIP has disappeared and been removed.

Just one new directory band this month. From 1st November 2013, for most BT business broadband customers, each printed summary bill will cost £2 (this includes itemised costs for calls over 40p). For all business customers, a printed fully itemised bill costs £6, plus VAT.


Version 185 in late October 2013 adds Wowtel (residential) and updates BT, Cheap Calls (residential), Cheap International Calls (residential), CherryCall (residential), Sky Talk (residential) and TalkTalk (business and residential). Solwise Telephony and Workphones were taken over by Pinnacle Technology Group in 2010 and have now stopped publishing tariffs so have been removed.

Ofcom has decided that, from January 2014, fixed line, broadband or mobile customers entering into a new fixed term contract should be able to exit it without penalty if their communications provider increases the cost of the monthly subscription.

Three new directory enquiry bands this month, including DQ146 for 118118 charged at over £1/call more than the previous band making a three minute call now £7.56 (£8.26 with TalkTalk).


Version 184 in late September 2013 adds Vyke Mobile (previously Callserve) and updates BT, AOL (residential), Axis Telecom (business), Eclipse (residential), Kingston Communications, OneBill Telecom (business), PlusNet (business and residential), TalkTalk (business and residential) and XLN Telecom (business).

For the second time this year, BT has increased business line rentals by about 6%, so a Business PSTN Line is 95p up at £19/month, £18/month for a 24 month contract. Business Value PSTN Line rental introduced in August is unchanged so now £4/month cheaper (£5 for 24 month contract). ISDN rentals are also increased, ISDN-2e to £43.10/month and ISDN-30e to £21.15/month/channel.  For BT Standard and most Business Plans, inland and international call charges and call set-ups are increased about 10%, mobile held.  BT Standard local peak calls now cost the same as mobile calls, 13p/min and 17p set-up, almost six times what the call would have cost 15 years ago (10p for three minutes). Anyone still using BT Standard business should really move to BT Business Plan where a local call is 6p/min and 6p set-up, or less for large call spends.


Version 183 in late August 2013 adds True Telecom (business and residential) and updates BT, 1899.com (residential), ACN (business and residential), Budgetcom (residential), Post Office (residential), Sky Talk (residential) and TeleTop (residential).

BT has introduced two new business line rental schemes, in addition to the current Business PSTN Line at £18.05/month. Business Value PSTN Line rental is £15/month (£13 for 24 month contract) with Standard Care level, and no auxiliary working so can not be used for multi-line groups or switchboards. So £3.05/month cheaper for single business lines, fax, ADSL, etc, if you don't mind waiting an extra day for repairs. Business Critical PSTN Line rental is £22/month (£21 for 24 month contract) with Critical Care level.

Standard Care is the same as residential lines, fix takes up to two working days, weekdays only, working hours, so a fault reported on Friday should be fixed by Tuesday night, weekend faults by Wednesday night. Normal business PSTN lines and ISDN get free Prompt Care, where a fix takes one working day, six days a week, working hours, so Friday faults fixed by Saturday night, weekend faults by Monday night.  Critical Care lines get immediate attention 24/7 with a fix within six hours, even on Xmas day. Critical care has always been available as an add-on, but is now easier to order. There is also Total Care which is slightly cheaper with fix within 24 hours seven days a week.

From 1st November 2013, BT may or may not be introducing a £2 charge for a business paper summary bill, but will certainly be charging £6 for an itemised bill. Both the bill stuffer and Price Book advance pages are ambiguous with different double negative exceptions to chargeable billing.


Version 182 in late July 2013 adds Voxhub (business), and updates BT, DTC Direct (residential), Eclipse (residential), Jajah (residential), Matrix Dial (residential), Mootel (residential), My Mondo (residential), Post Office (residential), Sky Talk (residential) and TopUpDial (residential).  Removed Barablu for old tariffs.

BT has increased the price of calling 118500 by about 20% to 59p per call plus £2.39/min.

Ofcom is planning to change the way people dial local telephone numbers in more parts of the country, in order to free up new numbers where supplies are running low. The change would require people in five areas of the UK to include the area code when dialling a local number from a landline, from 1 October 2014 in Aberdeen (01224), Bradford (01274), Brighton (01273), Middlesbrough (01642) and Milton Keynes (01908). The same process was introduced for Bournemouth (01202) in November last year. There are five more towns that might need area codes from 2017, Hull, Norwich, Plymouth, Stoke-on-Trent and Oxford, and 23 more from about 2020.


Version 181 in late June 2013 adds Cheaper International Calls (residential), and updates BT, Daisy Communications (business), Dial 123 (residential), Everything Everywhere (residential) and Virgin Media (business and residential).

BT has increased all business line connection charges from 1st July 2013, an analogue line is now £120 plus VAT. BT Business Plan and Broadband Voice Inclusive call rentals have increased £1/month.


Version 180 in late May 2013 updates BT, 4tel Communications (business), Dash Telecom (business), OneBill Telecom (business), Phone Co-Op (business and residential), PlusNet (business and residential), Skype (PC only residential), Yourcalls.net (residential) and Zen Internet (business and residential).

BT has been very quiet this month, no new tariff bands, only change is a £1/month increase in residential Line Rental Saver to £11.75/month, as a single annual £141 payment. Monthly line rental last went up in January.


Version 179 in late April 2013 updates BT, Axis Telecom (business), Kingston Communications, Phone Co-Op (business and residential), Primus Saver (residential), RateBuster (residential),  Rebtel (residential), Sky Talk (residential), SSE Energy Supply (residential) and TalkTalk (business and residential).

 Having last put up prices in January 2013, BT is doing it again for new residential customers from 19th April 2013.  All the existing residential call 'Plans' are being withdrawn from new supply and replaced by new 'Calls' plans with slightly higher call prices and a 12 month minimum contract term. Note these new plans remove cheaper evening inland landline and mobile calls

Residential 'Unlimited Weekend Plan' is now 'Unlimited Weekend Calls' at same line rental, but inland calls up to 9p/min weekdays with 15p call set-up (from 8.41p daytime and 1.11p evening with 13.87p set-up), UK mobile all now 12p/min (from 5.3p evening and 11.3p daytime). 'Unlimited Weekend and Evening Calls' rental down to £2/month (from £3.30) but paid call prices up per previously. 'Unlimited Anytime Calls' rental up to £7/month (from £5.15) but is now effectively the old 'Unlimited Anytime Plan Plus' that was £8/month and has half price UK mobile calls at 6p/min. So there is a saving if calling UK mobiles for more than 30 minutes a month. Minimum 12 month contract. No changes to line rental or international calls.

Existing customers will need to change plans to get the new prices, if there is a saving.  For instance, a three minute weekday evening call that used to cost 17p will now cost 42p (or free for £2/month rental), a weekday daytime call goes up from 39p to 42p. 13 years ago a local evening call would have cost 12p although there were no inclusive call packages until 2003.

BT has also withdrawn from new supply it's various BT Broadband Talk VoIP packages without any replacement.

BT Business has discontinued the £3/month discount for paper free billing.

Ofcom has published a third consultation Simplifying Non-Geographic Numbers (only 675 pages) on detailed proposals to tackle consumer confusion about how much it costs to call 03, 08, 09 and 118 non-geographic telephone numbers. Under the proposals, calls to 080 and 116 numbers would be free from all phones, including mobiles. Ofcom also proposes to standardise and simplify how the charges for calls to 084, 087, 09 and 118 numbers are presented, by separating the service provider and access charges, and substantially reducing the number of different tariff bands. 03 numbers will be the only non-geographic range whose cost is the same as geographic numbers, with 0845 and 0870 being priced under the new split arrangement.  Ofcom expects to finalise these proposals in summer 2013, with the new costs becoming effective 18 months later, in the first half of 2015 (a six month delay from the second consultation).

Currently mobile operators charge to call most 080 and 116 numbers since the average 0.5p/min paid by businesses to receive calls does not cover the extra mobile cost, so in future businesses will need to pay up to 3p/min to receive 080 calls from mobiles.  Some businesses may consider this extra cost too high and stop using 080 numbers or restrict calls from mobiles.

Currently the cost of calls to 084, 087, 09 and 118 numbers varies between telephone operators with over 300 different charge bands making it difficult to work out the cost of calling any number (except by using our Extended CodeLook web page).  Most of these numbers have revenue sharing, so the service provider receives a cut of the call price, while different operators mark-up the prices by varying amounts often adding 10 to 50% to the BT price, so accurate advertising of the call prices is impossible. Ofcom plans to reduce the number of different charge bands to initially 80 different price points (100 later) shared between all number ranges.  Note a £1 price point could apply to a premium or 118 call, so they are not a replacement for charge bands.   

From 2015, all these non-geographic numbers will be advertised as having a service provider cost plus the operators access charge, for example “This call will cost you X pence per minute plus your phone company’s access charge.”  Ofcom estimates the landline access charge to be less than 3p/min and the mobile charge to be about 16p/min with a minimum charge of one minute, but no call set-up charge. The access charge may be included with existing bundled minutes or free call packages, but some operators may charge more (as they do today).  It would be the same for all number ranges under a specific tariff package, but could vary between packages.

Maximum service charge prices for most number ranges will be specified. Ofcom plans to add the service charge to it's existing numbering database, to simplify distribution.


Version 178 in late March 2013 adds Call2Abroad (residential) and updates BT, Andrews & Arnold (business and residential),  Call2Call (residential), Call Happy (residential), Calls Discount (residential), Cheapest Chat (residential), Simply-Fone (residential) and Virgin Media (residential).

From April 2013, Ofcom has started charging operators for allocations of geographic telephone numbers in 30 area codes, to promote efficient use of numbers in these areas which are running short of new numbers. The cost is 10p per number per year, and is aimed at virtual operators with large sparsely used number allocations. who are expected to allocate numbers from smaller 100 number blocks.

Having last put up prices in January 2013, BT is doing it again for new residential customers from 19th April 2013.  All the existing call 'Plans' are being withdrawn from new supply and replaced by new 'Calls' plans.  These will be added to the next site update.

So 'Unlimited Weekend Plan' is now 'Unlimited Weekend Calls' at same line  rental, but inland calls up to 9p/min with 15p call set-up (from 8.41p and 13.87p), UK mobile all now 12p/min (from 11.3p). 'Unlimited Weekend and Evening Calls' rental down to £2/month (from £3.30) but paid call prices up per previously. 'Unlimited Anytime Calls' rental up to £7/month (from £5.15) but is now  effectively the old 'Unlimited Anytime Plan Plus' that was £8/month and has UK mobile calls at 6p/min. So there is a saving if calling UK mobiles  for more than 30 minutes a month. Minimum 12 month contract. No changes to line rental or international calls. As far as I understand, existing customers will need to change plans to get the new prices, if they are a saving.


Version 177 in late February 2013 adds Orbis Telecom (business) and PlusNet (business), and updates 24Talk (residential), 0844 Calls (residential),  118185.co.uk (residential), 1899.com (residential), Budgetcom (residential), Call 18866 (residential), Cheap Calling (residential), Dial Around (residential), DialWise (residential), Discount Dial (residential), FreeCall (residential), Telediscount (residential), TeleSavers (residential), Telestunt (residential), TeleTop (residential), Tesco (residential), TopUpNow (residential),  VoIPCheap (residential) and WebCall Direct (residential).

No BT changes this month, no new charge bands, few fixed line changes, all gone quiet after all the changes of the last two months.


Version 176 in late January 2013 adds Kesher Communications (business) and Telappliant (business), and updates  BT, 05pence (residential), Abroadcall (residential), AbroadTel (residential), AOL (residential), Clever Rates (residential), Daisy Communications (business), Localphone (residential), O2 (residential), PhoneBird (residential),TalkTalk (business and residential), and Virgin Media (business and residential). Orange is now called Everything Everywhere.  Scottish & Southern Energy is now called SSE Energy Supply.  Crazy Cheap Calls has disappeared and been removed.

The new broadband and post code look-ups have been improved again, with better Goggle maps for localities and post codes.

BT has added three more directory enquiry bands, making a total of 143.  Of these, 50 do not have any 118 numbers even allocated according to our CodeLook Find Numbers using Charge Band facility. Doubtless very few of the 444 different 118 services are actively promoted, and 94 inactive 118 services not even allocated a charge band.


Version 175 in early January 2013 updates BT, AOL (residential), Auracall (residential), Axis Telecom (business), Band Telecom (business), Daisy Communications (business), Orange (residential), PlusNet (residential), Post Office (residential), Primus Saver (business), Smallworld Cable (residential), TalkTalk (business and residential), Unicom (business) and XLN Telecom (business). The First:Telecom Top up and Talk service (previously Breathe) has been discontinued and removed.  Gold Telecom, Hive Telecom (business), HIGHnet and Phonestar no longer publish tariffs so have been removed.

 CodeLook broadband and post code look-ups have been improved.  When looking up a locality, you can now get a list of all fibre cabinets served by the exchange, the post code served by each cabinet, and all post codes served by the exchange (including ones without cabinets). Also added the percentage of the post code served by a cabinet, sometimes two or more, and when the cabinet went live. Some of the planned future dates got lost temporarily, and will be fixed shortly.

Ofcom has published a consultation 'Price rises in fixed term contracts' on whether consumers need additional protection from price increases during landline, broadband and mobile phone fixed term contract periods.  Ofcom is recommending that consumers are able to withdraw from a contract without penalty for any increase in the price for services applicable at the time the contract is entered into by the consumer (including changes to the level of service provided which effectively constitutes a (unit) price increase).

BT increased both residential and business line rentals and many call prices from January 2013, last increased in December and November 2011 respectively. 

From 5th January 2013, BT residential line rental increased by 85p to £15.45/month, Unlimited Evening & Weekend plan calls by 15p to £3.30/month and Unlimited Anytime plan by 25p to £5.15/month, which is up 5 to 6%.  Call set-up cost is up 0.77p to 13.87p per call, daytime calls by 0.46p to 8.41p/min, evening calls to 1.1p/min, while most international call prices have also increased, USA to 19.3p/min daytime and 13.3p off-peak, Europe from 23.2p/min peak, also 13.3p/min off-peak, but all only to 2.7p with Friends & Family International for £1.10/month.  Call features monthly prices have all increased. The cheapest broadband package is down by £1 to £13/month, the unlimited package up £1 to £26/month, Infinity 2 and 3 speeds are doubled. 

BT has also increased the surcharge for not paying by direct debit to £2/month, and the surcharge for not making at least two calls per month on the free Privacy at Home and Annual Line Saver options to £2/month.

From 1st January 2013, BT business line rentals are up 5 or 6%, analogue to £18.05/month, ISDN-2e to £40.86/month and ISDN-30e to £20.04/month/channel, call and network features also increase in cost. For BT Standard and various Business Plans, most inland and international call charges and call set-ups are increased, mobile held.

TalkTalk has increased line rental 45p to £14.95/month, and the price of most packages by £1/month.  Virgin Media is increasing line rental to £14.99/month from 1st February 2013. Various other operators have increased line rental, and most others will follow in the coming weeks.


Version 174 in late November 2012 adds Virgin Media (business) and updates BT, DTC Direct (residential), Eclipse (residential), eZe-Talk (residential), Sky Talk (residential), TalkTalk (residential) and Virgin Media (residential). NetCalls4Less and TalkCheaper.net have disappeared and been removed.

BT has increased the cost of calls to 118500 directory enquiries by 30p/min to £1.99/min with 62p set-up, and added two new bands DQ139 at 70p plus 60/min and DQ140 at £1.20 plus £2.09/min.

There are major improvements to CodeLook this month: historical code information, CUPIDs for operators porting numbers, and post code lookup for exchange and broadband availability. The numbering database behind CodeLook and available in raw format to Numbering and Database Members has been significantly improved this month. Added more locality names to newer number ranges including some new small localities.  


Version 173 in late October 2012 updates 4tel Communications (business), AOL Talk  (residential), Daisy Communications (business), IDNet (business and residential), PlusNet (residential), Post Office (residential), Scottish & Southern Energy (residential), Sky Talk (residential) and TalkTalk (residential).


Version 172 in late September 2012 updates BT, JT (Jersey) (previously Jersey Telecom) (residential), Joy Telecom (residential), Kent Telephones (business), Phone Co-Op (business and residential), Post Office (residential), Skype (PC only residential), TalkTalk (residential) and Wizards (business and residential).

BT has added another directory enquiry band DQ138 (118247) charged at £1.50 plus 70p/min.


Version 171 in late August 2012 updates BT, Callserve (residential), Cheap International Calls (residential), CherryCall (residential), DrayTEL (residential), DTC Direct (residential), Kingston Communications, Primus Saver (residential), Qudo (business), Sky Talk (residential), Smallworld Cable (residential), TalkTalk (business and residential) and Virgin Media (residential).  Welcome Telecom has been removed for old tariffs.  Your Connection has gone and been removed.

BT has added three more directory enquiry bands DQ135 (118888) charged at £1.98 for the first minute and £1.69/min subsequently, DQ136 (118899) at £3.98 plus £2.99/min, and DQ137 at £1.50 per call.

Previously, Sky charged the same as BT for most non-geographic calls but has now followed TalkTalk in charging higher prices, about 10% extra for premium and directory enquiry calls and 16% for fixed fee calls, although some newer charge bands are unchanged and still the same as BT.


Version 170 in late July 2012 updates ACN (business and residential), Call Happy (residential), Crazy Cheap Calls (residential), Just-Dial Instant (residential), RateBuster (residential), TalkTalk (residential). TopUpDial (residential), Virgin Media (residential), Voipfone (residential). and Zen Internet (business and residential).

Ofcom has announced that a pilot scheme charging communication providers £100/year for each block of 1,000 geographic telephone numbers they hold (whether used or spare) will begin next April, applying only to the 30 areas in which number allocation is expected to expire in the next 10 or so years.  This charge is intended to 'promote efficient use of geographic numbers', which means providers should only be allocated the minimum number of blocks for their customers, rather than keeping lots of unused blocks.  This primarily effects VoIP operators, many of whom have 10,000 line blocks reserved in the 663 area codes around the UK, but probably a fraction that number of users in each area code.  Due to only 30 areas being charged, the total money raised will be only about £2.1m spread between 173 communication providers, and only £3,000 a year to get a 1,000 line block in each of those areas.   Ofcom is also introducing 100 line allocation blocks in the 11 five digit area code areas, where blocks are also at a premium.

Ofcom has also published proposals for increased service charge caps for 09 and 118 services, of £5 per call or £3/minute, excluding VAT, which are higher than the current £1.27/minute (£1.53 with VAT) for 09 calls and £2.50/minute for 118 calls, but which have not kept up with inflation.  These changes will not be implemented until late 2014 when charge band simplification is expected to happen (see April Site Changes).


Version 169 in late June 2012 adds Telecoms World (business) and updates BT, Adept Telecom (business and residential), Be Un Limited (residential), Easy-Dial (residential),  Liquid Telecom (residential), Localphone (residential), Skype (PC only residential), Tesco (residential) and Xinix World (business).  Demon Voice (business) has been removed for old tariffs.

BT has increased business line rental by about 4% from 1st July 2012, only eight months after the last increase in November.  Analogue rental is now £17.20/month, ISDN-2e £38.94/month and ISDN-30e £19.10/month per channel.  Business Standard call set-up is up to 13p/call (from 12p) with most business call prices also up by 5 to 10%, inland peak is now 10.5p/min (was 10.0p), USA 50p/min, Europe 55p/min.  BT Business Plan (and variations) inland and international prices have increased by about 10%, UK mobile unchanged.

Added BT SIP Trunk business VoIP. BT has added another directory enquiry band DQ134 charged at 79p/min, with two bands more planned for next month.


Version 168 in late May 2012 adds Cheap Calls (residential), Dial 123 (residential) and Fast VoIP (residential) and updates BT, 24Talk (residential), AOL Talk  (residential), Post Office (residential), Scottish & Southern Energy (residential) and TalkTalk (residential). Fused Group (Fused Webcalls) has been removed.

BT has added two more directory enquiry bands DQ132 charged at £1.48 for the first minute and 49p/min subsequently, and DQ133 at £1.37 plus £1.70/min, and increased it's own 118500 service using band DQ106 to 62p plus £1.69/min.

Ofcom has confirmed that local dialling will cease in the 01202 Bournemouth area from 1st November 2012, so the dialling code will now need to be used for fixed line calls, as already happens for mobile calls.


Version 167 in late April 2012 updates BT, ACN (business and residential),  AOL Talk  (residential), Auracall (business and residential), Daisy Communications (business), Dash Telecom (business), Kingston Communications, OneBill Telecom (business), Orange (residential), TalkTalk (residential) and XLN Telecom (business). Pipex HomeCall was taken over by TalkTalk and has now been removed.

BT has increased business line connection costs by about 5%, so a new PSTN line now costs £112 plus VAT.  Business calling and network features and Call Minder have also increased slightly.

Ofcom has published a second consultation Simplifying Non-Geographic Numbers on detailed proposals to tackle consumer confusion about how much it costs to call 03, 08, 09 and 118 non-geographic telephone numbers. Under the proposals, calls to 080 and 116 numbers would be free from all phones, including mobiles. Ofcom also proposes to standardise and simplify how the charges for calls to 084, 087, 09 and 118 numbers are presented, by separating the service provider and access charges, and substantially reducing the number of different tariff bands. 03 numbers will be the only non-geographic range whose cost is the same as geographic numbers, with 0845 and 0870 being priced under the new split arrangement.  Ofcom expects to finalise these proposals by the end of 2012, with the new costs becoming effective 18 months later, in the second half of 2014.

Currently mobile operators charge to call most 080 and 116 numbers since the average 0.5p/min paid by businesses to receive calls does not cover the extra mobile cost, so in future businesses will need to pay up to 3p/min to receive 080 calls from mobiles.  Some businesses may consider this extra cost too high and stop using 080 numbers or restrict calls from mobiles.

 Currently the cost of calls to 084, 087, 09 and 118 numbers varies between telephone operators with over 300 different charge bands making it difficult to work out the cost of calling any number (except by using our Extended CodeLook web page). Most of these numbers have revenue sharing, so the service provider receives a cut of the call price, while different operators mark-up the prices by varying amounts often adding 10 to 50% to the BT price, so accurate advertising of the call prices is impossible. Ofcom plans to reduce the number of different charge bands to about 60, including just 15 bands for 118 calls instead of 130 since 90% of calls are made to just four heavily marketed 118 numbers. There would only be about 12 tariff bands for 08 calls and 20 bands for 09 premium (down from 100).

In future, all these non-geographic numbers will be advertised as having a service provider cost plus the operators access charge, for example “This call will cost you X pence per minute plus your phone company’s access charge.”  Ofcom estimates the landline access charge to be less than 3p/min and the mobile charge to be about 16p/min with a minimum charge of one minute, but no call set-up charge. The access charge may be included with existing bundled minutes or free call packages, but some operators may charge more (as they do today).  It would be the same for all number ranges under a specific tariff package, but could vary between packages.

Ofcom is issuing further consultations shortly to determine future charging for 070 personal, 076 paging and 05 number ranges and whether to allow higher cost premium calls than £1.53/min, with decisions expected by the end of this year. 


Version 166 in late March 2012 updates BT, 4tel Communications (business), Call2Call (residential), QX Telecom (residential), Scottish & Southern Energy (residential), Sipgate (residential), Sky Talk (residential), Story Telecom (residential), Tesco (residential) and Virgin Media (residential). CountryCall has been removed.

BT has changed Business Broadband Call prices, inland and mobile cost down but still capped at same levels, international calls up and now the same as Business One Plan.

Virgin Media has increased various prices from 1st April 2012.  Line rental remains the same, but Talk Evenings and Weekends increases to £4.60/month.  Day time inland calls are up to 9.94p/min with call set-up increasing by 1.7p to 14.94p/call (both about 2p more than BT), which makes a three minute day time call cost 44.76p (36.9p for BT). 

BT is doing a FTTP (fibre to the premises) pilot in the Oxfordshire village of Deddington, making all telephone and broadband connections fibre from 2013. The exchange has about 1,400 lines.

To cope with demand for new geographic telephone numbers, while avoiding changing dialling codes, Ofcom has decided to stop local number dialling in areas running short of new numbers.  Instead the dialling code will need to be used  for all calls, so that new local numbers beginning with 0 and 1 can be allocated. Ofcom will initially allocated new numbers starting with 0 to avoid misdialling for numbers starting with 1, such as expensive 118 numbers. The first such area will be Bournemouth (01202) from November 2012,  with Aberdeen (01224), Brighton (01273), Bradford (01274) and Middlesbrough (01642) expected to follow within the next two years.


Version 165 in late February 2012 updates BT, Hive Telecom (residential), Just Phone (residential), Lycatel (residential), O2 (residential) and TalkTalk (residential).

BT has increased residential annual Line Rental Saver from £120 to £129/year equivalent to £10.75/month.  Note at least two chargeable calls must be made each month or there is an extra cost of £1.50/month.

BT Business Commitment has been simplified by reducing the number of different call spend bands from 14 to two, with the same prices for one and two year contracts, resulting in call reductions for the lower spending bands.

BT has added another directory enquiry band DQ131 charged at £1.97 for the first minute and £1.59/min subsequently, which is now being used by The Number 118118 meaning the third price change in a year and approximately a 20% price increase


Version 164 in late January 2012 adds DTC Direct (residential) and Redbox (residential), and updates Budgetcom (residential),  Cheap Calling (residential), Dial Around (residential), DialWise (residential), Discount Dial (residential), Phone Co-Op (business and residential) and TalkTalk (residential). Alpha Telecom (bought in 2010 by Onyx Innovation UK Ltd) ceased trading in January 2012 and will shortly be placed into liquidation.  Money in pre-paid accounts will almost certainly be lost.

BT has added a new fixed cost charge band FF44 at 80p/call.


Version 163 in early January 2012 updates BT,  24Talk (residential), AOL Talk  (residential), Primus Saver (residential),  Resource Utilities (business and residential), TalkTalk (residential), Telesave (residential and business) and TeleTop (residential).

FreedomCall has stopped marketing telephony so has been removed. Vodafone is transferring it's landline broadband customers in February 2012 so has been removed.

BT has added another directory enquiry band DQ130 charged at £2.50/min.


Version 162 in early December 2011 updates BT, 0844 Calls (residential), Adept Telecom (business and residential), Calls Discount (residential), Coms.Com (business and residential), eZe-Talk (residential), First Number (residential), FreeCall (residential), GoTalk (residential), Hive Telecom (residential), PlusNet (residential), Skype (PC only residential),  SuperLine (residential). TalkTalk (residential), Telestunt (residential), TopUpNow (residential), Virgin Media (residential), VoIPCheap (residential) and WebCall Direct (residential).  First National Telecom calling cards has been removed.

BT has increased most residential prices by 5%, including line rental by 70p to £14.60/month, day time calls to 7.95p/min, evening calls to 1.05p/min and call set-up by 0.6p to 13.1p/min. UK mobile calls are held in price, but most international calls  are up in price, with a few minor countries remaining the same. Discounted UK mobile call plans are no longer available for new supply.  The paper free billing discount for old customers has now been discontinued so effectively a £1.25/month increase.  The Evening and Weekend Plan is up 15p to £3.15/month, but Unlimited Anytime Plan is down 10p to £4.90/month (but up if you include line rental).  Most Calling Feature and Network Feature rentals are up, most now being £3.15/month.  A minimum one minute daytime call will now cost 21p. BT last increased all these prices in April, there was the VAT increase in January and before that October 2010, so four changes in just over a year.  BT has however committed to freezing line rental, Anytime plan and inland call costs until 2013.  

BT Business Plan Lite daytime mobile prices have been reduced.  BT has added another directory enquiry band DQ129.


Version 161 in late October 2011 updates BT, Alpha Telecom (residential), Andrews & Arnold (business and residential), Axis Telecom (business), Kingston Communications, Orange (residential), Scottish & Southern Energy (residential), Sky Talk (residential) and TalkTalk (residential).  Continental Telecom was shut down by the High Court and has been removed. Yellow Telecom has ceased service and been removed. Axis Telecom is now only offering business services so the residential tariffs have been removed.  Call Union's web site is very old and no longer has call rates, so it has been removed.

The operator address list has been cleaned of various resellers still listed by Ofcom but which are believed to be no longer trading, but others may remain since companies often disappear without notification. 

BT has increased business line rental from 1st November 2011, a regular annual increase.  Analogue rental is now £16.52/month, ISDN-2e £37.40/month and ISDN-30e £18.35/month per channel.  Business Standard call set-up is up to 12p/call with most call prices also up, inland peak is now 10p/min, USA 45p/min, Europe 50p/min.  BT Business One Plan, Plus, Traditional and VoIP services now round calls up to one minute instead of 15 seconds for annual spends below £5,000. BT Business Plan prices have increased, with some of the lower spending tiers consolidated.

BT has added another directory enquiry band DQ127.  BT has introduced BT Business Complete a package with minimum 24 month term and such convoluted terms and conditions I can not ascertain whether it is uncapped, capped, inclusive or unlimited.  It seems to cost 1p per month (plus line rental) and then £20.50/month for the next 21 months, but only £12.50 if you also have BT business broadband, per line.


Version 160 in late September 2011 adds Just-Dial Instant (residential) and updates BT, 24Talk (residential), ACN (business and residential), AOL Talk  (residential), ICUK (business and residential),  Post Office (residential), Primus Saver (business and residential), RateBuster (residential), TalkTalk (residential) and Vonage (residential). Just-Dial TopUp2Talk is now being marketed as a service from mobile phones only so has been removed.

BT has added another directory enquiry band DQ128. 118118 has moved to a new directory enquiry band that changes it's cost from 41p set-up then £1.29/min, to £1.70 for the first minute then £1.29 for extra minutes.


Version 159 in late August 2011 adds Matrix Dial (residential) and updates BT, Focus (business). Sky Talk (residential), Phone Co-Op (business and residential), Tesco (residential) and Wizards (business and residential).  Saga has been removed since it now refers customers to Phone Co-Op.

BT has added two new fixed fee bands FF42 and FF43, and a directory enquiry band DQ126.


Version 158 in late July 2011 adds Xinix World (business) and updates Post Office (residential), TalkTalk (business and residential) and Virgin Media (residential).

No changes from BT this month, very, very quiet.


Version 157 in late June 2011 updates BT, ACN (business and residential), AOL Talk  (residential), Auracall (business and residential), Cheapest Chat (residential), Kingston Communications, Scottish & Southern Energy (residential), Simply-Fone (residential), Sky Talk (residential) and TalkTalk  (residential).  123Call has been removed for old tariffs.

From 1st June 2011, BT reduced residential UK mobile prices by about 1.4p/min. From 1st July 2011, two more mobile bands reduce prices, and the charging basis for premium bands P54 to P62 added in February 2011 changes from a fixed fee and per minute cost, to fixed fee for first minute then extra minutes, which is the same charging scheme as many other premium bands, possibly suggesting a pricing error in February.


Version 156 in late May 2011 adds Zen Business Talk (business) and updates BT, Axis Telecom (business and residential), TalkTalk  (residential and business), and Zen Internet (business and residential).  Opal Business is now TalkTalk Business.

From 28th May 2011, BT changed most business UK mobile rates, slight increases or decreases depending on package.

118118 has moved to a new directory enquiry band that changes it's cost from £1.29 set-up then 42p/min, to 41p set-up then £1.29/min, effectively doubling the cost after a minimum one minute call. But this is still slightly less than BT 118500 which is now 49p set-up and £1.39/min.

Ofcom changed it's regulations to prevent telecom and broadband contracts longer than two years being offered, and consumers and businesses must be offered a contract of no more than one year.


Version 155 in late April 2011 updates BT, 24Talk (residential),  ACN (business and residential), AOL Talk  (residential), eZe-Talk (residential), Post Office (residential), Scottish & Southern Energy (residential), Sky Talk (residential), TalkTalk  (residential), Virgin Media (residential) and Yourcalls.net (residential). Tiscali has been removed, now it's customers are absorbed into TalkTalk.

From 28th April 2011, BT increased residential line rental by 30p/month to £13.90/month, call set-up fee by 1p to 12.5p/call, day time calls by 0.6p to 7.6p/min, and various calling features by about 10%.  A three minute local day time call will cost 35.3p. 10 years ago such a local call would have cost 12p, during which time the internet has dramatically reduced the cost of communications. From 1st May 2011, calling features also increased in cost for business customers.  BT has added two new directory enquiry bands, to allow increase in the cost of certain calls. 


Version 154 in late March 2011 adds Cheap International Calls (residential) and updates BT Business,  AOL Talk  (residential), Axis Telecom (business and residential), Be Un Limited (residential), CherryCall (residential), O2 (residential), TalkTalk  (residential) and Virgin Media (residential).

BT has increased various business call charges from 1st April 2011. Standard business call set-up is up from 9p to 10p/call, and inland call charges up 1p/minute. Many BT business international call costs up about 10%.

BT has introduced BT Business Flex tariff for calls and lines, minimum one BT line, minimum period 24 months auto renewed for further 24 months unless cancelled during 34 day window around expiry (so not really flexible, and the type of contract Ofcom is currently trying to ban).

Ofcom continues it's long running campaign to reduce the cost of calling mobile phones from landlines.  From April 2011, cost is expected to be reduced by about 1.5p/min, then a further 2p/min over the next three years, also H3G should no longer be charged higher than the other main networks. Note no telephone operators have yet published reduced mobile pricing. Ofcom has also announced slight reductions in BT wholesale charges, that may result in lower line rental and broadband costs. 


Version 153 in late February 2011 updates BT, 05pence (residential), 0844 Calls (residential), 1301 (residential), 24Talk (residential), Abroadcall (residential), AbroadTel (residential), ICUK (business and residential), PhoneBird (residential), Phone Cheap (residential), PlusNet (residential) and TopUpNow (residential).


Version 152 in late January 2011 adds Dash Telecom (business), DoubleDial (residential) and Rebtel (residential), and updates BT, Sky Talk (residential), TalkTalk  (residential) and Vodafone (residential). Telecom Plus and Universal Telecom have been removed due to lack of current tariffs.

Generally, all residential costs in the comparison were increased to reflect 20% VAT effective from 4th January 2011.  Some operators are however effectively reducing package prices slightly by absorbing the VAT increase and holding the price, while a lot of round up and down is happening to maintain rounded price points.   Because the VAT increase means many premium and directory enquiry services no longer have rounded prices, BT has so far introduced 31 new charge bands with new prices such as 50p or £1. 

BT finally published 20% ex-VAT residential pricing on 6th January 2011, two days after the last web site update was published, so there are minor changes and clarifications this month.  


Version 151 in early January 2011 updates BT, Andrews & Arnold (business and residential), AOL Talk (residential), Auracall (business and residential),  First:Telecom (residential), Phone Co-Op (residential), Pipex HomeCall (residential), Post Office (residential), PlusNet Home Phone (residential), Scottish & Southern Energy (residential), Sky Talk (residential), TalkTalk  (residential), Tesco (residential) and Virgin Media (residential).  Direct Save has been removed because it's has failed to remove viruses from it's web site for 12 months.

Generally, all residential costs in the comparison have been increased to reflect 20% VAT which is effective from 4th January 2011.  Some operators are however effectively reducing package prices slightly by absorbing the VAT increase and holding the price, while a lot of round up and down is happening to maintain rounded price points.  Some directory enquiry services are moving to new charge bands, in order to increase prices, including 118118 which is now DQ120 at £1.29 set-up and 42p/min.

As of 4th January 2011, BT has published two different sets of new 20% VAT pricing.  The fully detailed BT Price List has been amended to reflect exactly 20% VAT on all charges, but the Tariff Guide for Residential Customers and VAT Changes Explained and VAT FAQ web pages show totally different prices, some rounded down, some rounded up, and some increased above the VAT increase.  So residential daytime calls are up to 7p/min and call set-up is now 11.5p/min, although evening calls are down to 1p/min.  Line rental is up slightly to £13.60/month or £120/year if paid annually.  Package prices are reduced slightly so Unlimited Weekend and Evening Plan is £3 and Unlimited Anytime is £5. BT is increasing the non-direct debit processing fee to £1.80 to include full VAT (due to an European court decision). Currently, the tariff comparison updates major rounded prices, but some are awaiting publication of proper new ex-VAT prices in the detailed price list.

BT Calls and Broadband packages have changed, the introductory Option 1 is reduced in price to £14/month, a new 40 gig capped Option 2 added for £18 and Unlimited with Anytime calls is £28.  BT Infinity Option 1 FTTC (fibre to the cabinet) broadband has been introduced which offers up to 40 meg download speed, 2 megs upload and 40 gig cap and Evening & Weekend calls for £18/month, with Option 2 increasing upload speed to 10 megs and uncapped for £28/month with Anytime calls.

BT has added several new charge bands, FM15 and FM16 mobile, FF33 to FF35 premium fixed cost, and DQ120 to DQ123.  directory enquiry, all with retail costs rounded for 20% VAT.  Due to the VAT increase causing rounded price points such as 10p or £1 to increase slightly, operators are now requesting even more new charge bands with rounded VAT pricing, which will make this comparison even more unwieldy.


Version 150 in mid November 2010 updates BT, 24Talk (residential), Adept Telecom (business and residential), Auracall (business and residential), Focus-4U (business), Gradwell (business), Primus (business and residential), TalkTalk  (residential) and Unicom (business).  Phone Co-Op and Virgin Media are the first operators to publish prices including 20% VAT which is effective from January 2011, all residential costs in this comparison will be increased to reflect 20% VAT from the end of December.

BT has increased business line rental from 1st November 2010, a regular annual increase.  Analogue rental is now £15.97/month and ISDN-2e £35.76/month, ISDN-30e £17.54/month per channel.  Various calling features have increased as well.  BT Commitment Option 1 call charges have increased about 10% from 1st December 2010 with minimum call charge up to 5p. Option 3 is unchanged.

BT has added a DQ119 directory enquiry band that is now the most BT expensive call at £5.43 for the first minute, then £2.95 for each extra minute. Several other operator charge more than BT for DQ calls, so will be even more expensive, maybe £7 for the first minute.

Added a new CodeLook - Area Name Overview page which attempts to overview the reasons for the UK telephone area names reported by CodeLook and our various numbering database products.  Mostly, the area names are the same as used by BT and Ofcom, but there are a number of exceptions where CodeLook uses different area names, and other places where the BT or Ofcom name is still used pending a better choice.  The AreaCodes.csv and dialnatl.csv files have five new columns, with the county and region for each area name, number format (ie 4+6) and Ofcom area name.


Version 149 in late September 2010 added Be Un Limited (residential) and updates BT, ACN (business and residential), AOL Talk (residential), Direct Save Telecom (residential and business), Kingston Communications, O2 (residential), Orange (residential), PlusNet (residential), TalkTalk  (residential) and Virgin Media (residential).

BT has increasing residential rental and call costs from 1st October 2010.  Residential line rental has increased 50p/month to £13.29/month. The £1.25/month discount for paper free billing is no longer available for new supply as of September 2010, so only existing customers will continue to benefit from £12.04/month paper free billing.  Call set-up is up (for the second time this year) by 1p to 10.9p/call  and inland calls by 0.5p to 6.4p/min, so a three minute local call now costs 30p. 10 years ago a local call would have cost 12p. Many other operators have increased prices this month to match BT.


Version 148 in late August 2010 updates BT, FreedomCall (residential), Gradwell (business), Lycatel (residential), Post Office (residential),  Primus Saver (residential) and Tesco (residential).

Added new directory enquiry band DQ118 at 99p/call.  BE, owned by O2 Telefónica, is introducing line rental and home telephone packages for it's LLU broadband customers from 5th September, full pricing details next month.  Most major operators are following BT and increasing prices from October, details next month.


Version 147 in late July 2010 updates BT, Andrews & Arnold (business and residential), Axis Telecom (business and residential), Coms.Com (business and residential), eZe-Talk (residential), Hive Telecom (residential), ICUK (business and residential), Jajah (residential), O2 (residential), Post Office (residential) and SuperLine (business and residential). Hive Telecom is the new name for Euphony Telecommunications Ltd, which bought the assets of Euphony Holdings Ltd and Euphony Communications Ltd that were placed in administration on 14th December 2009. Orange UK and T-Mobile UK are being integrated as Everything Everywhere Ltd, although the separate brand names remain unchanged.

Site news - made a lot of improvements to the numbering and locality databases, correcting various errors.  Now distinguishing  Newcastle-under-Lyme and Newcastle-upon-Tyne from Newcastle in Northern Ireland, Hull is now Kingston Upon Hull. The area or national code tables have been improved,  so while Newcastle-upon-Tyne previously had a single code 0191, it is now 01912, 01914 since the extra digit is needed to distinguish it from Sunderland and Durham.  Also added various missing area codes allocated in recent years, mostly for national dialling. Many more locality names now reflect geographical locations, rather than exchange names which are sometimes street names.

Ofcom is introducing two new free numbers, 116 006 which will be used as a helpline for victims of crime and 116 117 for a non-emergency medical on-call service.

BT increased various business calls costs from 23rd July 2010.  For standard business (not a package), local and national calls are now charged the same at 2/4/8p/min with a 9p set-up cost, which represents an increase for local calls and a reduction for national calls. Inland call prices for BT Business Plans have risen slightly. From 1st October 2010, BT is increasing residential rental and call costs.  Line rental is increasing 50p/month, call set-up is up 1p to 10.9p/call and inland calls by 0.5p to 6.4p/min, so a three minute inland call will now cost 30p. 10 years ago a local call would have cost 12p.


Version 146 in late June 2010 updates BT, 0844 Calls (residential), 24Talk (residential), AOL Talk (residential), Axis Telecom (business and residential), Call Happy (residential), Phone Cheap (residential), Resource Utilities (business and residential), Story Telecom (residential), Skype (PC only residential), Telediscount (residential), TeleSavers (residential), Telestunt (residential), TopUpNow (residential)  and Virgin Media (residential).

BT has added another WiFi mobile band FW11, and directory enquiry band DQ117 charged at about 50p/call.

Ofcom has announced that BT, TalkTalk and Virgin Media have all agreed to reduce their residential early termination charges for cancelled a one year or longer contract early.  For a standard landline, BT currently charges a reduced £7.50/month for the remainder of a cancelled contract which is further reducing to £2/month in October (Evening & Weekend to £2.50, Anytime to £5).  TalkTalk currently charges full monthly cost, but from June is now charging £3/month for phone line only, and £8/month for Essential Broadband with phone line.  Virgin Media also currently charges full monthly cost, but from August it will be £4/month for a phone line and £9/month for broadband L, but less for both phone line and broadband. 


Version 145 in late May 2010 adds Auracall (business and residential) and O2 (residential), and updates Gradwell (business), Opal (business), Phone Co-Op (business and residential), Post Office (residential), Sky Talk (residential), TalkTalk (residential), Telecom Plus (residential) and Tiscali (residential). CF1 Telecom (Consumer First) and Care Telecom have disappeared and been removed.

The presentation of the UK Telecom Tariff Cost Comparison web site has substantially changed this month, to improve clarity and offer improved comparison between the hundreds of telephone tariffs listed. 

Extended CodeLook now lists all numbers found, instead of one at time using next and previous, provided at least two or three digits are entered.  The new list allows clicking for full details of each number, also the charging band and operator.  The number and charge band pages show the cost of calling that number both as detailed call cost bands and sample costed calls of  various lengths on different days and times.  Calls may be costed by any residential or business package (around 500 at present) selected as the Charge Costing Package.  Because CodeLook now returns multiple numbers, the previous daily limit of 100 free look-ups has been reduced to 20, after which a membership login is needed.  We are however offering free membership for non-commercial use by the various authorities that use CodeLook to trace telecom operators.

The operators page shows the company address and telephone number and web link (if available) with details of Ofcom 'licenses' and numbers of number codes allocated.  When looking-up localities, all the exchange codes in a locality may now be listed.  These various pages that previously listed telecom operators and links have been consolidated into a single common new format, with extended information including many more external web links, with new links being added each month,

Business and residential tariff packages may now be listed alphabetically, or compared by different categorisation such as bundled free calls and broadband.  For any package, the complete list of call costs may be viewed.  Line rental costs may be compared. Call costs may be compared for 350 different charge bands  (instead of six before), with sample call costs shown for various call lengths between 30 seconds and 1½ hours. Various other reports are planned for future weeks. 


Version 144 in late April 2010 adds Primus (business) and Tesco Broadband (residential) and updates BT, First Number (residential), FreeCall (residential), Gradwell (business), TalkTalk (residential), Tiscali (residential), and Virgin Media (residential).  Tesco Internet Phone VoIP service has ceasing and been removed.

BT has increased business calling and network feature prices, which are now all listed in the new Line Rentals table.  The special offer of Business One Plan Inclusive Call Packages and Unlimited Call Packages has been extended for another six months.  These is a new premium band P44 at £1/min, and two new directory enquiry bands, one for 118118 which now costs £1.68 for the first minute, BT 188500 is almost the same now for the first minute.


Version 143 in late March 2010 adds Mootel (residential) and updates BT, Andrews & Arnold (business and residential), Direct Save Telecom (residential and business),  First:Telecom (residential), Gradwell (business), Kingston Communications, Primus Saver (residential), Scottish & Southern Energy (residential), Smallworld Cable (residential), TalkTalk (residential) and Virgin Media (residential).  Tesco Internet Phone VoIP service is ceasing on 27th April 2010.

From 1st April 2010, BT is making residential price changes, increasing the call-set-up fee to 9.9p, daytime inland calls to 5.9p/min, and moving the day time charging period one hour later to 7am to 7pm (which mainly effects mobile and international calls).  Note business day time was already 7am to 7pm.  There is a new mobile band FM14, and the cost of calling BT directory enquiries on 118500 band DQ106 has increased to 49p set-up and £1.16/min.


Version 142 in late February 2010 adds 24Talk (residential), Daisy Communications (business), eZe-Talk (residential), IDNet (business and residential), OneBill Telecom (business) and TopUpDial (residential) and updates BT, Continental Telecom (business), My Mondo (residential), Phone Co-Op (business and residential), PlusNet (residential), Saga (residential) and Simply-Fone (residential).

From 5th February 2010, BT has increased the residential call set-up fee slightly from 9.25p to 9.30p per call, presumably for easier VAT rounding. From 1st April 2010, BT making residential price changes, increasing the call-set-up fee to 9.9p, daytime inland calls to 5.9p/min, and moving the daytime charging period one hour later to 7am to 7pm (which mainly effects mobile and international calls).  Also from 1st April 2010, Virgin Media is increasing some residential prices, line rental is up 99p to £11.99/month, call setup is up 1p to 11p per call, and inland and mobile charges are increasing 1p/min. These April changes are not yet reflected in the tariff comparison.

For paid members, the spreadsheet includes two new sheets, Line Rentals and Tariffs, which replace the current Packages sheets with greater detail, some of which was previously available in Notes.  Line Rentals has about 36 columns including rental and connection charges for analogue and ISDN lines and most common network and feature options such as CLI.  Tariffs has about 49 columns many of which are Yes/No detailing features of each package including type of billing offered, broadband offerings, and contract and spend limits. Please note the content of these new sheets will take a few months to verify for all the various operators. The new content is not yet available on the web pages, but will appear (in non tabular form) in a major site redesign due shortly.  Also, the call price sheets have new rows for capped calls, changes in some time band names and some changed tariff and operator names, to provide consistency between various sheets. Most of these changes were done for a new tariff SQL database that will be announced shortly. 


Version 141 in late January 2010 adds 1301 (residential), and updates BT, 05pence (residential), 118185.co.uk (residential), 1899.com (residential), Abroadcall (residential), AbroadTel (residential), ACN (residential), Adept Telecom (business), Call 18866 (residential), Direct Save Telecom (residential and business), ICUK (business and residential), Kingston Communications, Post Office (residential), Scottish & Southern Energy (residential), Sky Talk (residential), TalkTalk (residential), Tesco (residential), Yellow Telecoms (business) and Vonage (residential). 

Ofcom is introducing a new short number 111 for non-emergency health services, which will be free to the caller. 

British Telecom is introducing new directory bands DQ113 and DQ114, and Wifi FW10. Band DQ112 for 118118 costs 85p for the first minute, then  35p/min, each about 5p more than the old DQ109 band.


Version 140 in late December 2009 updates BT, Cheapest Chat (residential), Euphony (residential),  Pipex HomeCall (residential), Phone Co-Op (residential), PlusNet Home Phone (residential), Post Office (residential), Resource Utilities (business), Simply-Fone (residential), Skype (PC only residential), TalkTalk (residential), Telecom Plus (residential), Tiscali (residential), Virgin Media (residential) and Yourcalls.net (residential). Maxtalk appears to have disappeared and has been removed.

Value Added Tax reverts from 15% to it's original rate of 17.5% from 1st January 2010, so all residential prices including VAT have been increased appropriately.  Unlike the reduction 12 months ago, it's not expected that many companies will ignore the VAT change and effectively cut prices.  Some companies had pricing that, once updated, were nicely rounded price points (like 10p call set-up for Virgin Media), while other companies will be rounding prices up, or maybe down (Virgin Media has absorbed the VAT increase for rentals), over the coming weeks. 


Version 139 in late November 2009 updates BT (business), Call 18866 (residential), 118185.co.uk (residential), 1899.com (residential), CF1 Telecom (business), Post Office (residential), and Virgin Media (residential). 

BT business has increased many business call costs from 1st December 2009, a month after increasing line rental. For BT Standard, call set-up is up to 8p, local peak up to 6.5p/min, and peak mobile up to 14p/min. For BT Business Plan, all inland, mobile and international call costs are up about 20% for spending levels of £5,000/month and less.  Currently, call prices for Business One Plan (and variants) appear unchanged, despite previously being similar to Business Plan.

There are major numbering database changes, with almost double to number of records and vastly improved locality information. The main allcodes table now includes numbers that are currently free, reserved or protected, as well as allocated, indicated by a new Status column. The localities table now includes the full postal postal code separately to the previous partial code, which is for the 'centre' of the locality, there are also grid eastings and northings (in metres) and latitude and longitude of the locality (except for some islands). Numerous area code names have been updated to mostly match those now used by Ofcom rather than the original BT names, and this change removes all duplicate names for four digit areas. Note some Ofcom area names have been ignored or changed, due to spelling errors or because the name referred to an exchange in a different area. The locality names have been improved, with all postal code changes in the last 10 years reflected, many moved to the correct postal towns and strange names corrected. Note some county names are yet to be updated. Some of these changes are in preparation for a new SQL database that will be announced early next year and which will include tariff information. 


Version 138 in late October 2009 add Wizards (business and residential), and updates BT Business, AOL Talk (residential), Orange (residential), PlusNet Home Phone (residential), Scottish & Southern Energy (residential), Simply-Fone (residential) and TalkTalk (residential),  Swiftcall has been removed due to KDDI Europe discontinuing prepaid services from 30th November 2009.

BT has increased business line rental from 1st November 2009, an analogue line is up 2.5% to £15.24/month, ISDN-2e £34.47 and ISDN-30e to £16.90 per channel. BT Business One Plan Inclusive now includes free inland calls (500 minutes/months) although this seems to be a restricted period offer to next April, also a new Unlimited Call Plan for between £12.50 and £22.50/month depending on plan type and spend level that includes unlimited inland and international calls to about 200 countries (max one hour).

Ofcom is introducing three new 116 helpline numbers, 11600 for a missing children helpline, 116111 for ChildLine and 116123 for the Samaritans.


Version 137 in late September 2009 updates BT, Andrews & Arnold (business and residential), Axis Telecom (business and residential), Demon (business), Direct Save Telecom (residential and business), Euphony (residential), Kingston Communications, Saga (residential), Sky Talk (residential), Virgin Media (residential) and Vonage (residential).  Demon Voice over Broadband has been removed since the service is ceasing.  AOL, Scottish & Southern Energy and TalkTalk are increasing call cost from November.

BT residential has increased the call set-up cost from 8p to 9.05p, and daytime inland calls from 4.5p to 5.25p/min, so a 30 second daytime call now costs 14.3p. This is the second set-up increase this year, last September it was only 6p.

BT business has doubled the surcharge for payment processing other than direct debit to £3/month and increased the paper free billing to £3/month credit.

Following a recent rule relaxation by Ofcom, BT is now offering combined Calls and Broadband plans. Get Connected costs £16.65/month combining Unlimited Evening and Weekend Plan and BT Total Broadband Option 1 (up to 20 meg), Home and Away costs £24.46/month combining Unlimited Evening and Weekend Plan and BT Total Broadband Option 3 (up to 20 meg and BT Mobile Broadband), Unlimited costs £29.41/month combining Unlimited Anytime Plan and BT Total Broadband Option 3 (up to 20 meg). All prices exclude BT line rental, require an 18 month contract, include a BT Home Hub, broadband dongle extra.


Version 136 in late August 2009 updates BT Business, 0844 Calls (residential), ICUK (business and residential), Jersey Telecom (residential), Kingston Communications, Phone Cheap (residential), Phone Co-Op (residential), Post Office (residential), Sky Talk (residential), TeleSavers (residential) and TopUpNow (residential).  Carphone Warehouse TalkTalk is now just TalkTalk.

There are a lot of changes on the State of the Industry page this month, including Redstone, Symphony, AT Communications and Eurotel being taken over by Daisy Group.  The Telecom Links page has been cleaned of many old and changed links.

BT has increased BT Commitment business inland and mobile call charges by about 10%, and increased the minimum call charge for Option 1 to 4p.  Otherwise very quiet. 


Version 135 in late July 2009 updates BT and Adept Telecom (residential).  Vectone no longer publishes UK prices so has been removed. VoIP4U has been removed for old tariffs.  This has been a very quiet month, apart from BT there are no changes from any of the major operators, although some are pending for September.

New Ofcom 0870 regulations finally come into effect from 1st August 2009 when revenue sharing should cease and all operators should charge 0870 calls at the same price as 01/02/03 calls. Ofcom first published this proposal in April 2006, almost three and half years ago, the long delay before implementation was mostly down to industry being reluctant to forego the massive 0870 revenues. BT is fully implementing the new 0870 regulations, but no other OLO has yet published new price lists.  Many OLOs already offer free 0845/0870 calls on packages with free 01/02/03 calls.  OLOs that want to continue charging more than geographic rate for 0870 must not use 'national rate' as the description and must publicise the higher cost.

Since revenue sharing on 0870 numbers is now reduced to the same as 03 numbers, any businesses still publishing 0870 numbers may need to pay 1p or more per minute for incoming calls to be diverted to their real number or otherwise handled. Most companies have been migrating from 0870 to 0844 or 0871 numbers for this reason.

Also from 1st August 2009, PhonepayPlus (ICSTIS) will take over regulation of 0871/0872/0873 numbers which will be formally be recognised as Premium Rate Services. All 087 service providers need to register with PhonepayPlus by 31st July 2009.

Ofcom has proposed a new number 111 for a Department of Health non-emergency healthcare helpline.

BT has reduced the monthly fee for the residential Unlimited Anytime Calling Plan by £1 a month to £4.95, or £17.45 per month including line rental. BT has introduced a new personal number charge band PN22 to which some personal numbers that used to be charged at 'national rate' are moving. 

The UK Telecom Tariff Cost Comparisons web site recently moved from Magenta Systems Ltd main site at http://www.magsys.co.uk to it's own http://www.telecom-tariffs.co.uk/ domain.  The new site uses a different back end server, which will ease many improvements planned for the next three months.  The only obvious difference at the moment is all pages with ASP URLs are now HTM instead.  For members, the login system has been improved so you will be remembered between visits and will only need to login once instead of separately for different parts of the site.  The main index pages now show if you are logged-in and allow log-off if the PC is shared. Logged-in members now have unrestricted access to Online CodeLook bypassing the daily usage restriction.

Numbering members should note that 03 calls are listed by BT as charge band G21 but are mostly charged as national calls so have been given a new charge band B4 to distinguish them. 0870 calls used to be national rate charge band B2 and while this band has been discontinued by BT it has been retained in the database since not all OLOs are charging 0870 the same as national calls.


Version 134 in late June 2009 updates BT, 05pence (residential), Abroadcall (residential), AbroadTel (residential), Clever Rates (residential), First:Telecom (residential), PhoneBird (residential), Pipex HomeCall (residential), Post Office (residential) and Simply-Fone (residential).

BT has increased the cost of calling it's own 118 directory enquiry services, and the operator service charge.

The UK Telecom Tariff Cost Comparisons web site is moving from the Magenta Systems Ltd domain, to it's own http://www.telecom-tariffs.co.uk/ domain.  Both sites are currently duplicated with the same content, the old site will be dropped in a couple of weeks.  The new site uses a different back end server, which will ease many improvements planned for the next three months.  The only obvious difference at the moment is all pages with ASP URLs are now HTM instead.  For members, the login system has been improved so you will be remembered between visits and will only need to login once instead of separately for different parts of the site.  The main index pages now show if you are logged-in and allow log-off if the PC is shared. Logged-in members now have unrestricted access to Online CodeLook bypassing the daily usage restriction.


Version 133 in late May 2009 updates BT, 0844 Calls (residential), 118185.co.uk (residential), 1899.com (residential), ACN (residential), Call 18866 (residential), Carphone Warehouse TalkTalk (residential), Easy-Dial (residential), Orange (residential), Post Office (residential), Telecom Plus (residential), Virgin Media (residential), VoIPCheap (residential)  and Work-Phones (business).  Residential operators that are now offering free 0845 and 0870 calls if 01/02/03 are free (and usually the same cost as 01/02/03 otherwise) include BT, ACN, Carphone Warehouse TalkTalk, Post Office.  Note free 0845 calls exclude dialup internet and indirect access numbers.

BT has increased the cost of most standard business calls, that is calls from lines not opted into a discount scheme such as BT Business Plan.  Call set-up charge is up 2p to 7p per call, local and national calls up to 1p/min more, UK mobile up 1.2p/min, and international calls from 5p to 25p/min more. A one minute business national call now costs 16.99p before VAT. Strangely, national calls now cost almost 50% more than 0870.

Ofcom is reviewing possible changes to premium rate services, such as requiring pre-call announcements, for advertisements to include not just the BT cost of calling a number but also the name and cost of the most expensive provider (which may be double than of BT), improving the PhonepayPlus number checker to more easily identify service providers and maintaining a better registration scheme for parties in the supply chain to ease reputation checks.


Version 132 in late April 2009 updates BT, Adept Telecom (business), Carphone Warehouse TalkTalk (residential), Cheapest Chat (residential), Direct Save Telecom (residential and business), Pipex HomeCall (residential), PlusNet Home Phone (residential), Primus (residential), Simply-Fone (residential), Tiscali (residential), Vonage (residential), XLN Telecom (business) and Yourcalls.net (residential).  Sainsbury's is no longer reselling TalkTalk and has been removed.  Carphone Warehouse TalkTalk, Orange and Post Office all have increases due 1st June which will be published next month. Virgin Media was supposed to be increasing prices on 1st May, but nothing has yet been published nor have customers been informed of any changes.

Ofcom has announced new 0870 regulations that come into effect from 1st August 2009, when revenue sharing should cease and all operators should charge 0870 at the same price as 01/02/03 calls.  This is just the latest date published in the three years Ofcom has been trying and failing to change 0870 regulation.

BT has added another directory enquiry band that costs £3.60 for the first minute and another WIFI band. Most other operators now charge more than BT for non-geographic numbers such as 118, 0844, 0871, 09, etc, sometimes double BT's price. The new directory enquiry band costs £6 for the first minute by Pipex Homecall for instance.


Version 131 in late March 2009 updates BT, AOL Talk (residential), Carphone Warehouse TalkTalk (residential), HIGHnet (business), Kingston Communications, Post Office (residential), Scottish & Southern Energy (residential), Sky Talk (residential), Solwise Telephony (business) and Tiscali (residential).

BT has changed most residential tariffs from 1st April 2009, rounding many prices up or down to cleaner price points after the forced VAT reduction last December. Residential line rental has increased by £1/month to £12.50/month, or £11.25/month with paperless billing. Day time inland calls are up just over half a penny to 4.5p/min.  Most international calls are rounded down to the nearest half penny.  BT has abandoned it's oldest discount scheme Friends & Family, that variously offered 5, 10 or 20% discount off one, five or 10 commonly called numbers. Instead, International Saver has been renamed Friends & Family International, and Mobile Saver to Friends & Family Mobile, both offer cheaper calls for a low monthly fee. Connection cost for a new residential line has increased to £122.50 and the cost of calling features (such as Caller Display and Call Waiting) is increasing by 79p/month to £2.50/month each.

BT has added two more directory enquiry bands, and BT Business One Plan Traditional, a scheme similar to BT Business One Plan but no requirement to take BT Broadband or BT Mobile. Has a lower £200 annual spend tier with local calls at 3.5p/min, £500 is 2.7p/min, inland calls price cap is 10p, UK mobile price cap is 25p.

A few operators have followed BT and increased rentals and UK call charges this month, others are following in May.


Version 130 in late February 2009 updates BT, Andrews & Arnold (business and residential), Continental Telecom (business), Liquid Telecom (residential and business), Localphone (residential), Lycatel (residential), Pipex HomeCall (residential), Tiscali (residential) and Virgin Media (residential).  Nildram Voice has been removed.  Toucan customers have been transferred to Pipex, so Toucan has been removed.

New indexes are now available for the main tariff comparison tables.  Each separate compared tariff is now indexed both alphabetically and by service type.  Calls to Pakistan are on the increase due to a tax increase by the Pakistan government. BT has added one more directory enquiry band, but otherwise it's quiet before many residential changes due from 1st April 2009.

From 1st August 2009, 0871, 0872 and 0873 numbers, and 09 numbers charged between 5p and 10p per minute, will all be regulated as premium rate services by PhonepayPlus (aka ICSTIS) so the cost of calling them should be identified in advertising, promotional literature and signage, and complaints about misuse may lead to refunds. 


Version 129 in late January 2009 adds Calls Discount (residential), Crazy Cheap Calls (residential), and updates BT, Adept Telecom (business), AOL Talk (residential), Callserve (residential), Cheapest Chat (residential), Coms.Com (business and residential), Direct Save Telecom (residential and business), Euphony (residential), First:Telecom (residential), Lycatel (residential), Orange (residential), Primus (residential), Simply-Fone (residential), Sipgate (residential), Sky Talk (residential), Skype (PC only residential), SuperLine (business and residential), Telecom Plus (residential), Tesco (residential), Virgin Media (residential), and Your Connection (business). 

From 16th January 2009, BT increased it's residential call set-up charge from 6.85p to 8p (inc VAT), so most chargeable calls increase in cost by over 1p per call. This is the second increase in four months.

At the same time, most 0845/0870 calls will now be free for the first 60 minutes if the residential package offers free 01/02/03 calls. Lower cost or free 0845/0870 calls are limited to 1,000 minutes or 150 calls per month, before higher pricing resumes. The 0870 price reduction was mandated by Ofcom over three years ago, but has been repeatedly delayed due to complaints by operators making massive profits from 0870 numbers.

From 1st April 2009, BT is making many more residential price changes.  Line rental increases by £1/month, the free Friends & Family discount scheme is being discontinued, day time inland calls increase to 4.5p/min, most call features increase in price and the Evening & Weekend Plan increases to £2.95/month.  Many other call costs are being reduced by a fraction of a penny down to 0.5p or 1p points, as a result of the VAT reduction in late 2008 that left many odd prices.


Version 128 in late December 2008 updates BT, 0844 Calls (residential), 118185.co.uk (residential), 1899.com (residential), ACN (residential), AOL Talk (residential), Axis Telecom (business and residential), Call 18866 (residential), Carphone Warehouse TalkTalk (residential), Direct Save Telecom (residential and business), Eclipse (residential), FreeCall (residential), ICUK (residential), Kingston Communications, Pipex HomeCall (residential), Phone Co-Op (residential), PlusNet Home Phone (residential), Post Office (residential), Sainsbury's (residential), Scottish & Southern Energy (residential), Sky Talk (residential), Telesavers (residential), Tiscali (residential), Virgin Media (residential), WebCall Direct (residential), Yourcalls.net (residential) and Your Connection (business).  Carphone Warehouse TalkTalk Business is now known as Opal.  Voice Trading has been removed because it no longer sterling prices, only Euros. 

The prices of all residential tariffs and call costs were initially automatically reduced to reflect the new 15% VAT level introduced from 1st December 2008, for the next 13 months only, and then adjusted for specific operators.  From January 2010, VAT will return to it's previous 17½% (or maybe even higher).  Operators vary about their approach to the lower VAT rate.  Many are passing the cut on in full (including BT, Pipex, PlusNet, Post Office, Tiscali, Scottish & Southern Energy), others are reducing call prices only to keep nicely rounded monthly package and rental prices (Virgin Media, TalkTalk), some are ignoring the VAT reduction and effectively increasing prices (AOL, Finarea).  None of the call though operators appear to have adjusted their published prices to reflect the lower prices being charged by BT, but may argue their pricing is simply rounded to the nearest whole penny.  But this comparison has always tried to show prices rounded to two decimal places, so the lack of accurate pricing may lead to changes been missed. 

Ofcom is planning to introduce new 116 pan-European helpline phone numbers, that will be free of charge.  116000 will be for missing children, 116111 children's helpline and 116123 emotional support helpline.  Ofcom, advised by the government, will choose suitable organisations for allocation of these numbers.

Paid site members should note the main tariff spreadsheet is now Excel 97-2003 format, and there are minor formatting differences needed for a new automated web site creation system used this month.  In coming months this new system will allow long overdue radical improvements in site design.


Version 127 in late October 2008 adds Continental Telecom (business), Gold Telecom (business), Phonestar (business) and updates BT, Demon (business), Kingston Communications, Pipex HomeCall (residential), Tiscali (residential), Skype (PC only residential), XLN Telecom (business) and Yourcalls.net (residential).  Equitalk, SchoolTel, Telstra and Your Connection have been removed for old tariffs, Your Communications was taken over by Thus a while ago and so has been removed.

BT has increased business line rental by about 3.5% to £14.87/month for analogue, £16.48/month per ISDN-30 channel and £33.63/month for ISDN-2e, all plus VAT, from 1st November 2008, Featureline rental has also increased. 

The Number 118118 directory enquiry service has raised it's cost again by moving to new band DQ105 costing 69p set-up and 29p/min by BT, but up to 35% more by some other operators, 95p set-up and 45p/min by Tiscali, and £1.17 set-up and 47.5p/min by Pipex Homecall, for instance. Most other directory enquiry services have also moved to more expensive bands in the past few months, BT 118500 is now DQ103 costing 23p set-up and 64p/min.

Ofcom has yet again deferred reducing the cost of calling 0870 numbers, and now aims to publish a further statement on implementing any changes to 0870 policy by the end of the year, almost three years after it's original decision to stop 0870 being used as premium numbers.


Version 126 in late September 2008 updates BT, 118185.co.uk (residential), 1899.com (residential), ACN (residential), AOL Talk (residential), Axis Telecom (business and residential), Call 18866 (residential), Carphone Warehouse TalkTalk (residential), Coms.Com (business and residential), Euphony (business and residential), First:Telecom (residential), Kingston Communications, Phone Co-Op (residential), Saga (residential), Sainsbury's (residential), Scottish & Southern Energy (residential), Sky Talk (residential), Telecom Plus (residential), Tesco (residential), Tiscali (residential), Toucan (residential), Virgin Media (residential), Vonage (residential) and Yourcalls.net (residential).  Auracall, Swiftnet, and XFone have been removed for old tariffs.  Telappliant VoIPTalk is no longer marketed directly to residential customers. Bulldog customers have been migrated to Tiscali or Pipex so it has been removed.

Virgin Media has increased standard international prices for the second time this year, so calls to the USA have now doubled in price to 20p/min, and most off-peak prices are now double or triple BT, being the least competitive in the comparison.  


Version 125 in late August 2008 adds Fused Webcalls (business) and updates BT, 05pence (residential), 0844 Calls (residential), Abroadcall (residential), AbroadTel (residential), Call Happy (residential), Call2Call (residential),  Carphone Warehouse TalkTalk (business), Cheapest Calls (residential), Cheapest Chat (residential), CherryCall (residential), CountryCall (residential), Dial Around (residential), DialWise (residential), Discount Dial (residential), Eclipse (residential), Kingston Communications, Liquid Telecom (residential and business), Localphone (residential), Lycatel (residential), My Mondo (residential), NetCalls4Less (residential), Nildram (residential), Pipex HomeCall (residential), Phone Cheap (residential), Phone Co-Op (residential), PhoneBird (residential), Post Office (residential), Qdial (residential), QX Telecom (residential), RateBuster (residential), Simply-Fone (residential), Sky Talk (residential), TeleTop (residential), Telesavers (residential), TopUpNow (residential), TopUp2Talk (residential), Vectone (residential) and WebCall Direct (residential).  Lansdowne Telecom (business), Lo-call Telecom (business), MCI (business), MegaCalls (residential), Nomi (residential), ntl:Telewest (business), OneBill Telecom (business), Opal (business), Primus (business), Qualicom Aspire (business), have been removed for old tariffs.

Many operators have been increasing costs to Pakistan recently due to the Pakistan raising the tax (Settlement Rate) on incoming calls from US$0.025 to US$0.10 per minute (about 1.25p to 5p/min).  Operators already charging 10p/min or more for Pakistan might be able to absorb the increased tax, but better value operators need to increase the call cost.  Historically, most countries taxed incoming international calls and this cost was one reason for the high cost of calling many countries.  In recent years such taxes have been reduced (India from US$0.10 to US$0.05) or removed, and with the use of the internet to deliver overseas calls, costs have fallen.  It's why you can call China or the USA for the same price (or less) as a UK call from better operators.  Cuba is a notable exception, being the most expensive country by several fold.

BT is increasing the residential call connection cost from 6p to 7p, from 16th September 2008, which is reflected in this update.  The domino effect means other operators that closely follow BT pricing will be following, Carphone Warehouse from 1st October, and Post Office from 7th September (but only to 6p, and making UK weekend calls free).  BT is reducing charging for the residential Mobile Saver scheme to 7.5p/min 24/7, which will be the cheapest way of calling a UK mobile peak time (but Carphone Warehouse is dropping to 7p/min in October).


Version 124 in late June 2008 adds Andrews & Arnold (business and residential), Maxtalk (business and residential), and Primus (residential) and updates BT, FreedomCall (residential), ICUK (business and residential), Jajah (residential), Jersey Telecom (residential), Just Phone (residential), Kent Telephones (business),Sainsbury's (residential) and Voipfone (residential). Gem Telecom has disappeared and been removed. Intelligent Networks (aka CPS Connections) has been removed for old tariffs.

BT has added another new WiFi band and two more directory enquiry bands, so there are now 104 different price bands.

BT is increasing the residential call connection cost from 6p to 7p, from 16th September 2008.


Version 123 in late May 2008 updates BT, 05pence (residential), 123 Call (residential), 4tel Communications (business), Abroadcall (residential), Band Telecom (business), CF1 Telecom (business), Clever Rates (residential),   CherryCall (residential), Coms.Com (business and residential), CountryCall (residential), Demon (business), Easy-Dial (residential), Kingston Communications, and Virgin Media (residential).  21st-Century Telecom has disappeared and been removed. BillSmart, Business Communications, BWN Telecom, Cheers International, Connaught Telecom, Daisy Communications and EW Communications have been removed for old tariffs.

BT has added a new WiFi band and another directory enquiry band.  BT has increased the minimum call charge for BT Commitment option 1 to 3.5p.


Version 122 in early May 2008 adds Call Happy (residential)  and updates BT, 0844 Calls (residential), 118185.co.uk (residential), AOL Talk (residential), Budgetcom (residential), Callserve (residential), Carphone Warehouse TalkTalk (residential), Cheapest Calls (residential), Dial Around (residential), DialWise (residential), Discount Dial (residential), First:Telecom (residential), FreeCall (residential), Jersey Telecom (residential), Phone Cheap (residential), Sainsbury's (residential), Sky Talk (residential), TeleTop (residential), Telesavers (residential), Telestunt (residential), TopUpNow (residential) and WebCall Direct (residential). Internet Telecommunications has been placed in administration and has been removed. eZe-Talk, Switch Telecom and Voicenet have been removed for old tariffs, Babble and Sip2Go seem to have disappeared and have been removed.

BT has added two more directory enquiry bands, so there are now over 100, one of which is free of charge. 

From 1st May 2008, is changing business international call prices.  Many countries have moved to new price bands, and nearly all price band numbers (or letters) have changed as well, but are still different for the three main tariff groups.  Costs for BT Standard Business international calls have increased by about 15% so the most expensive countries are now £2.50/min (and the cheapest 30p/min). BT Business Plan sees some call reductions (China down from 60p/min to 15p/min), while BT Customer Commitment sees minor increases (most of Europe up to 9p/min) and some reductions (China down to 15p/min). Strangely, many countries cost more under BT Customer Commitment than BT Business Plan, despite the former being aimed at substantial monthly spend levels.  Business satellite call costs have increased, some have doubled. 

Two years after it's proposal to reduce the cost of calling 0870 numbers from February 2008, Ofcom has issued yet another consultation document that now proposes the cost should drop to the same as geographic numbers by the autumn, subject to the resolution of a dispute over termination rates.  The only real difference with the new consultation is that Ofcom is no longer requiring a pricing pre-announcement by operators that choose to charge more than geographic cost. Ofcom is also extending premium rate service regulation by PhonepayPlus (aka ICSTIS) to 0871/0872/0872 numbers charged at more than 5p/min.  BT has agreed that once this regulation is place, it will allow international access to 0844 and 0871 numbers, which it currently blocks due to fraud and other scams.


Version 121 in late March 2008 updates BT, Carphone Warehouse TalkTalk (residential), Direct Save Telecom (residential and business), Pipex HomeCall (residential), Sainsbury's (residential), Sky Talk (residential), Telecom Plus (residential), Telesave (residential and business), Tesco Talk (residential), Tiscali (residential) and Virgin Media (residential).  Beaming and Call2Save have been removed for old tariffs.

The Residential Telephone Tariffs - Packages sorted comparison has been improved with new columns for call connection charge, call minimum charge, paper bill charge and non-direct debit payment charge.  Because some operators quote monthly line rental including a paper bill (BT and Virgin Media), and others without (TalkTalk), the table now allows direct comparison of monthly cost by direct debit without a paper bill, DD with a paper bill and non-DD with a paper bill. Some of these new costs are still missing, they've yet to be collected from some smaller operators.

From 1st April 2008, BT is increasing basic residential line rental by 75p/month to £11.75/month, but increasing the paper-free discount by the same amount to £1.25/month. But customers must apply for paper-free billing to avoid paying more each month. Those not paying by direct debit are charged an extra £1.50/month.

Residential day time calls are increasing from 3.25p/min to 4p/min (plus 6p connection charge, so 10p for the first minute) and evening calls to 1.5p/per minute instead of being fixed at 4.5p for one hour, while weekend calls are free for the first hour, then 4p/min.   BT is renaming most of the residential packages and reducing the monthly cost of BT Together 3 by £1.25/month. BT Together 1 is now Unlimited Weekend Plan at £11.75/month,  BT Together 2 is now Unlimited Evening and Weekend Plan at £14.45/month, while BT Together 3 is now Unlimited Anytime Plan at £17.70/month, all including line rental. 

BT residential international call costs are increasing by between 1.5p and 15p/min, France is now 11.5p/min off peak, 21p/min peak, USA 11.5p/min off-peak, 17.5p/min peak. Bizarrely, Japan and Hong Kong remain cheaper than any European countries or North America. International Option is now International Saver, still £1/month but now offers much cheaper international calls to all countries instead of just 35.  Since many countries are still charged at 60p/min or more by BT, adding International Saver may pay for itself with just a few minutes of calls each month, for instance Israel is 10 times more expensive without Saver. 

BT Business is increasing the daytime peak call period by two hours per day to 7am to 7pm (residential became 6am to 6pm a while ago), and increased local and national call costs for standard business lines so a national daytime 01/02 call now costs 9p/min (ex VAT), and increased the call set-up fee to 5p (ex VAT). Most business users should be using BT Business Plan or Customer Commitment where call costs are much lower.  The BT Advantage and Business Choices options were discontinued for new supply 12 months and have now been removed from the comparison.

Virgin Media has increased all standard international rates by 5p/min.  Other operators are following BT and increasing calling rates, including Carphone Warehouse TalkTalk, Direct Save Telecom and Tiscali. Calls to 0845 and 0870 number also seem to be generally increasing, despite 0870 numbers supposed to have been reduced in February.


Version 120 in late February 2008 adds Localphone (residential), Simply-Fone (business)  and updates BT, ACN (residential), Carphone Warehouse TalkTalk (residential), ICUK (business and residential), Orange (residential), PlusNet Home Phone (residential), Simply-Fone (residential),  Sky Talk (residential),   Britclick, Midas Telecom and Planet Talk have been removed for old tariffs.  Pipex Business is now called Vialtus Solutions, the Pipex brand and residential customers were taken over by Tiscali last year.

BT has added a 99th directory enquiry band, and 11th mobile band.

From 1st April 2008, BT is increasing basic residential line rental by 75p/month but increasing the paper-free discount by the same amount. BT is renaming most of the residential packages and reducing the monthly cost of BT Together 3 by £1.25/month. Evening calls will again be charged per minute instead of being fixed for one hour.  Full details next month.

Ofcom has proposed a new area code 01987 for Ebbsfleet in Kent, where up to 25,000 homes are being developed. 


Version 119 in late January 2008 adds 05pence (residential) and Abroadcall (residential)  and updates BT, AbroadTel (residential), Clever Rates (residential), Gradwell (business), Internet Telecommunications (business and residential),  PhoneBird (residential), Welcome Telecom (business) and XLN Telecom (business).

BT Together 1 residential customers now have free weekend calls (for the first hour), previously 4.5p for the hour.

BT has simplified the costing of international ISDN 64K data calls, so all schemes now use the same five country bands, down from 10 on some schemes, some prices will have gone up, some down. There are now 98 different directory enquiry tariff bands, the latest of which costs £3.68 for the first minute, then £1.99 each extra minute.  

From 20th February 2008, all BT business customers with a single telephone line will start a new 12 month contract on BT Business Line Divert at the same price as a normal business line but including call diversion feature.  The new contract means 12 months rental must be paid even if the line is cancelled or transferred to another provider.  Such customers should receive a letter in February allowing them to opt out of the new contract and call divert, which they may not need or want.

The planned reduction in cost of 0870 calls due on 1st February 2008 appears to have been delayed by Ofcom and BT due to disputes with various providers that are reluctant to forego the massive revenue such numbers generate, and which have not moved customers onto alternate numbers despite almost two year's notice of the changes.  Not a single operator has yet announced a reduction in the cost of calling 0870 numbers.


Version 118 in late December 2007 adds Care Telecom (business) and updates BT, Call2Call (residential), Callserve (residential), Carphone Warehouse TalkTalk (business and residential), Easy-Dial (residential), Kingston Communications, NetCalls4Less (residential) and Pipex HomeCall (residential).

BT has changed all business mobile costs, weekend all up, weekdays up and down, and simplified the cost for businesses without a discount plan by charging the same all week for all the main networks. There are now 96 different directory enquiry tariff bands. 


Version 117 in late October 2007 updates BT,  0844 Calls (residential), 18185.co.uk (residential), 1899.com (residential), Budgetcom (residential), Cheapest Calls (residential), Cheapest Chat (residential), Dial Around (residential), DialWise (residential), Discount Dial (residential), FreeCall (residential), Focus 4U (business), ICUK (business and residential), Kingston Communications, PlusNet Home Phone (residential), Phone Cheap (residential), Telesavers (residential), TeleTop (residential), TopUp2Talk (residential), TopUpNow (residential), Virgin Media (residential), Voice Trading (business), VoIP-4U (business and residential), WebCall Direct (residential). Ecomtel has ceased operation in the UK and has been removed. ICUK is now using it's own name instead of the Red Telecom brand.

BT has increased analogue and ISDN business line rentals from 1st November 2007. There are now 94 different directory enquiry tariff bands. 

Virgin Media has reduced it's unlimited packages (again) to the same price as BT, increased it's inland call cost to 3.25p/min the same as BT, removed weekend rate for mobile and 0845 calls, and increased it's call connection cost to 7p to keep it higher than BT.


Version 116 in late September 2007 updates CF1 Telecom (business), Liquid Telecom (residential), Orange (residential), Pipex HomeCall (residential), Post Office (residential), Tiscali (residential), Vectone (residential) and Yourcalls.net (residential).  Operators that have changed pricing strategy similarly to BT in August (6p connection, no weekend rate for mobiles, etc) include Pipex HomeCall and Tiscali.

Virgin Media is reducing some package prices and increasing some call prices in November, which will be included in the October comparison.


Version 115 in late August 2007 adds Coms.Com (business and residential), Zen Internet (business and residential), and updates BT, ACN (residential), Adept Telecom (residential), AOL Talk (residential), Axis Telecom (residential and business), DrayTEL (residential), Scottish & Southern Energy (residential), Sky Talk (residential), Story Telecom (residential), SuperLine (business and residential) and Tesco Talk (residential). ExchangeXT is now Coms.Net. Operators that have changed pricing strategy similarly to BT last month (6p connection, no weekend rate for mobiles, etc) include AOL Talk, Scottish & Southern Energy, Sky Talk and Tesco Talk. 

BT has added two more directory enquiry bands, so there are now a total of 93 tariff bands.  BT has extended the retirement date (when service ceases) for Business Highway to 31st March 2008, and improved it's free conversion offer to ISDN-2e to include a free terminal adaptor so basic voice equipment can still be used. 

From 1st February 2008, 0870 numbers will be charged by BT in band G21, the same as 03xx numbers, costing the same as 01/02 calls for BT Together and Business Plan.  Scottish & Southern Energy has become the first operator to publish a price list that clearly shows 01/02/03 numbers all charged at the same cost.

Ofcom's plan to increase consumer protection for 070 personal numbers this autumn takes effect from 1st September 2007 with BT now playing a free pre-call announcement for calls charged at more than 20p for the first minute warning of the likely call cost and allowing hang-up before charging starts.  Other operators are required to do the same. 


Version 114 in late July 2007 updates BT, 0844 Calls (residential), 18185.co.uk (residential), 1899.com (residential), Budgetcom (residential), Call 18866 (residential), Carphone Warehouse TalkTalk (residential), Cheapest Calls (residential), Cheapest Chat (residential), Dial Around (residential), DialWise (residential), Direct Save Telecom (residential and business), Phone Co-Op (residential), PlusNet Home Phone (residential), Red Telecom (business and residential), Resource Utilities (residential), Simply-Fone (residential), Telediscount (residential), Telesavers (residential), Telestunt (residential), Tesco Talk (residential), Tiscali (residential) and TopUpNow (residential).  Note the price of using all 08xx or 09xx call through services has increased by 3p/call due to the BT call connection charge increase, see below. TNBN (business) has been removed for old tariffs.  Tiscali has acquired Pipex residential voice and broadband customers, which includes Bulldog, HomeCall and Toucan.

From 1st August 2007, BT is making a radical billing change, abandoning weekend rate for mobile and 0845/0870 calls and instead charging weekday rates at the weekend. The connection charge for all timed calls doubles to 6p per call (the same as Virgin Media) with some rates dropping slightly to compensate.  Inland peak rate will increase from 3p/min to 3.25p/min, evening and weekend calls drop 1p to 4.5p/call.  Removing cheaper weekend calls leads to significant price increases, a three minute Saturday morning mobile call increases in price from 18p to 43.5p (up 142%) and Saturday evening to 28.5p (up 58%). Although peak mobile cost has dropped 0.5p/min, the new 6p connection means only calls longer than six minutes will be fractionally cheaper.  Peak 0845/0870 calls each drop 1p/min (but now apply at the weekends) and evening rate drops to the old weekend rate, but due to the higher connection charge only calls longer than thee minutes will be cheaper. Other operators are changing pricing strategy similarly, including Carphone Warehouse TalkTalk, Direct Save Telecom and Tesco.

BT has added new low cost premium bands at 6/7/8/9p/min and national rate, presumably so that services using 0870 and 0871 numbers can be migrated when they become regulated as premium numbers.

Finarea SA has started adding a web page SMS service for 1p/message worldwide to it's Call 18866, 18185 and 1899 account based services.

The main tariff tables have been updated to show the cost of fixed price calls in brackets, ie (4.50) means 4.5p/call, instead of just being shown in the Packages table. The Location Independent tariff band (G21) used for 03xx numbers has been moved up the tables to be near to National Rate which it is effectively replacing early next year. This band is blank for most operators since only a small number currently have specific G21 pricing, and only BT is currently charging G21 the same as inland calls. 


Version 113 in late June 2007 updates BT, 18185.co.uk (residential), Adept Telecom (residential), Carphone Warehouse TalkTalk (residential), First Number (residential), Phone Co-Op (residential), Post Office (residential), Simply-Fone (residential), Telecom Plus (residential), Tesco Talk (residential), Tiscali (residential), Unicom (business), Voipfone (residential) and XLN Telecom (business).  United Worldwide Telecom has disappeared and been removed.

BT has allocated the new 03xx number ranges to tariff band G21, for which the normal cost is 4p peak, 3p off peak and 1p weekends, but for residential BT Together users and for BT Business Plan, G21 is charged the same as national calls with free calls depending upon the package. Currently, no other operators appear to charge band G21 as national (many charge 5p or more) but this may change as 03xx becomes more widely available. BT is now penalising businesses that don't pay bills by direct debit by charging £1.50/month extra to pay by cheque (same as residential).  Telex lines are no longer available for new supply from BT, and service appears to have already withdrawn in many other countries, 75 bits/second really can not compete with email via broadband (or even a slow modem).  Corrected BT International Freedom which is a £5/month, not £15/month as initially shown last month.  BT has delayed the withdrawal of Business Highway ISDN from July 2007 to 31st March 2008.


Version 112 in late May 2007 adds Story Telecom (residential), and updates BT, Call2Call (residential), Carphone Warehouse TalkTalk (business and residential), ExchangeXT (business), Focus 4U (business), Kingston Communications, Pipex HomeCall (residential), QX Telecom (residential), Qudo (business), Saga (residential), Sky (residential), SuperLine (business and residential), Toucan (residential). TRA UK has been removed for old tariffs.

The BT Together Option 2 charge has been reduced by 50p to £3.45/month, and BT Together Option 3 by £2 to £7.95/month.  BT has increased the line rental discount for paper free billing to 50p, which effectively reduces line rental to £10.50/month when paying by direct debit (£1.50/month extra to pay by cheque).  BT International Freedom is a new £5/month addition for BT Together, that provides free calls (max 60 minutes) to 36 major countries and reduced rates to a further seven countries, but may withdraw the option if usage exceeds 600 minutes a month (effectively making calls 0.83p/min).  The call connection charge for BT Business Standard has increased to 4.5p/min. 

Connection and minimum charges have become more complicated in recent years, with many operators now having differing charging scenarios for different types of calls.  Ideally, the tariff tables would show the connection charge, minimum call cost and minimum call length for each separate tariff band (and the maximum duration for which the charge applies, and the cost beyond that time) but this is simply not feasible in the current spreadsheet table format.  So a compromise has been reached with the tariff tables now having eight separate rows for the connection and minimum call charges for inland, mobile, international and other (non-geographic) calls, and a new row with the minimum call charging length in seconds (defaulting to one second for per second billing).  Separating all this data into different rows also means the data is entirely numeric and much easier to import into databases than the previous mix of numeric and comments (like 2p/3p and 60 secs). 


Version 111 in late April 2007 adds CherryCall (residential) and updates 18185.co.uk (residential), Callserve (residential),  Eclipse (residential), eZe-Talk (residential), First:Telecom (residential), Gradwell (business), HIGHnet (business), Jajah (residential), Just Phone (residential), Kent Telephones (business), Kingston Communications, Lycatel (residential), My Mondo (residential), Qdial (residential) and Tiscali (residential). WightCable North (previously Omne Communications) has changed it's name to Smallworld Media. Video Networks (HomeChoice)  was taken over by Tiscali last year and it's customers are now being offered Tiscali Talk tariffs, so HomeChoice has been removed. Removed KDDI's indirect service, it is now offering Swiftcall (which it owns) accounts and phone cards. Removed Lloyds TSB Ideal since the service is now closed. NewTel was taken over by Carphone Warehouse last year and has now been removed. Legend (PipeCall) was taken over by Thus (Demon) last year and has now been removed.

BT has replaced the Light User Scheme with BT Basic.  LUS was based on low call usage while BT Basic is 'a social telephony scheme for customers who are in receipt of certain state benefits. Both exclude households with more than one telephone line, ADSL or a mobile phone (except BT Basic allows a low usage PAYG mobile).  BT Basic rental is £14.49/quarter when paying by direct debit including a £4.50 call allowance, but local and national calls are charged at 10p/min.


Version 110 in late March 2007 adds MegaCalls (residential), Scottish & Southern Energy (residential) and TNBN (business), and updates BT, AbroadTel (residential), Adept Telecom (residential), Clever Rates (residential), CountryCall (residential), Focus 4U (business), PhoneBird (residential), Phone Cheap (residential), Phone Co-Op (residential), Virgin Media (residential).  CPS Connections Ltd (business) has changed it's name to Intelligent Networks Ltd.

BT is withdrawing from new supply it's historic business discount packages, BT Business Choices and Advantage.  BT has also added three new mobile and personal number bands (FM10, PN19 and PN20). BT is ceasing Business Highway service in July and is now offering to convert the lines back to PSTN free of charge with a new two year rental contract. 

Ofcom has started the allocation of the new UK wide 03 telephone codes that it hopes will replace 0870 from next year. Due to demand for 0844 and 0871 numbers from businesses being forced off 0870 but still wanting to retain revenue for callers, Ofcom is planning to introduce the 0843 and 0872 ranges for expansion.

Ofcom is reducing the cost of calls from fixed lines to mobile telephone over the next four years, so calls to Orange and T-Mobile should reduce to the same as O2 and Vodafone (if currently charged higher), but the drop next month is a maximum of about 0.2p/min so retail prices may not change initially.  Calls to Hutchinson G3 mobiles should drop at a much higher rate (by about 2.5p/min next month), but will still be charged higher than the other four operators.

Virgin Media (NTL:Telewest) is reducing it's package rentals to the same as BT, but changing to per minute billing in addition to a call connection charge, so that a 10 second peak mobile call will now cost 21p against about 6p for BT, and a 10 second call to Pakistan will cost 65p against 7p for BT. 


Version 109 in late February 2007 updates BT, 123 Call (residential), 4tel Communications (business), ACN (business and residential), AOL Talk (residential), Babble (residential), Bulldog (business and residential LLU), Carphone Warehouse TalkTalk (residential) and Red Telecom (business and residential).

BT has added six new multimedia and internet bands (G26, G27, G28 I30, I31, I32), an 85p fixed call band, and two more directory enquiry bands (making a total of 87).

The latest Ofcom National Telephone Numbering Plan introduces UK wide 03x numbers that will be charged at the same price as 01/02 numbers with calls free for inclusive call packages.  030 is for use by public sector and not for profit bodies, 033 is for general use, 034 is for migration from 084 and 037 is for migration from 087. 


Version 108 in late January 2007 adds Voice Trading (business), and updates BT, 0844 Calls (residential), 18185.co.uk (residential), 1899.com (residential), Budgetcom (residential), Call 18866 (residential), DialWise (residential), Discount Dial (residential), Easy-Dial (residential), FreeCall (residential), Kingston Communications, Orange (aka Wanadoo, residential), Phone Cheap (residential), Phone Co-Op (residential), Sky (residential), Skype (PC only residential), Virgin Media (residential), VoIPCheap (residential), Vonage (residential and business), and WebCall Direct (residential).

From 1st February 2007 Telewest and NTL prices are converging under the temporary name ntl:Telewest, then changing again to Virgin Media.  The changes effect Telewest and NTL customers differently, but generally mobile calls are lowered, while international calls go up and down, many international calls are more than BT, some up to double BT.

BT has announced that revenue sharing for 0870 numbers will cease from 31st January 2008, 21 months after the Ofcom proposal was published requiring 0870 calls to be charged the same as 01x and 02x calls. It is yet to be seen whether existing 0870 users will migrate to 0871, 0844, 0845 or similar numbers with revenue sharing, or to the new 03x national number range.

BT is introducing VAT inclusive billing for residential customers with monthly rental.  Although BT publishes VAT inclusive prices, currently the bills show VAT exclusive rental and itemised call charges, and VAT is added to the bill total, which makes checking itemised bills against published prices very confusing.  There were also anomalies with published pricing when insufficient decimal places in the VAT exclusive prices meant odd prices appeared when VAT was added, such as premium calls at 149.99p instead of £1.50/minute, and BT has now published rounded VAT inclusive prices for residential customers. 


Version 107 in mid December 2006 adds Eclipse (residential), Jersey Telecom (residential), NetCalls4Less (residential) and Vodafone (residential), and updates BT, Call2Call (residential), Carphone Warehouse TalkTalk (business), Equitalk (residential), Simply-Fone (residential) and Sipgate (residential). SunDial service is discontinued and has been removed.

The BT Communicator Softphone (PC) VoIP service is being discontinuing at the end of 2006, with the existing BT Broadband Talk Softphone service replacing it.  BT has added two more mobile tariff bands (FM9 and FW6), four more multimedia and internet bands (G24, G25, I28, I29) which are charged as fixed fee for the first minute, then per minute, and seven more directory enquiry bands with assorted pricing. 

From 1st February 2007 Telewest and NTL prices are converging, details in the next update in January.


Version 106 in late October 2006 adds Tesco Internet Phone (residential), and updates BT, 0844 Calls (residential), 18185.co.uk (residential), 1899.com (residential), Alpha Telecom (residential), Call 18866 (residential), Budgetcom (residential), Cheapest Chat (residential), Dial Around (residential), DialWise (residential), Kingston Communications, Lycatel (residential), NTL (residential), Simply-Fone (residential) Telecom Plus (residential), Telediscount (residential), Telesavers (residential), Telewest (residential), Tesco Talk (residential), VoIPCheap (residential) and WebCall Direct (residential).

B4UDial has disappeared and been removed.  Alpha Telecom Smalltalk and Rhubarb, and Telecom Plus Business have been removed due to lack of new tariffs. While BT reduced the cost of 0845/0870 calls this month, NTL and Telewest have both increased them instead, up to four times higher than BT's prices.

Quiet month from BT, two new directory enquiry bands and various old business call plans discontinued, BT Together for Business, BT Key Numbers, Key Contact, Key Cities, Key Regions, Key Countries, Night Caller, Dual Discount, Commitment Option 2 and 4 and Business Plan (CR).  Also a new BT Business One Plan which offers national calls capped at 5p for an hour for those also using BT Broadband and/or BT Mobile.


Version 105 in late September 2006 adds CF1 Telecom (business) and Vectone (residential) and updates BT, AOL Talk (residential), Carphone Warehouse TalkTalk (residential), Direct Save Telecom (residential and business), GoTalk (residential), Legend Comms (aka Pipecall, business and residential), Orange (aka Wanadoo, residential), Pipex HomeCall (residential), QX Telecom (residential), RateBuster (residential), Sainsbury's (residential), Sky Talk (residential), SuperLine (business and residential), Telewest (residential), Tiscali (residential), VoIP-4U (business and residential), Voipfone (residential) and WightCable (residential). NewTel has been taken over by Carphone Warehouse. One.Tel and Tele2 have been removed since they have ceasing operation separately to Carphone Warehouse TalkTalk which took them over last year. Touch Telecom (E7even UK) has ceased operation and been removed. Argos Telecom, Cable Telecom, Gossiptel, Joentelecom, Splash Telecom and Telecubes have disappeared and been removed.  Tesco Talk and Telecom Plus have temporarily closed their web sites while reviewing their services.

From 1st October 2006, BT has replaced the 5.5p minimum residential call charge with a 3p call setup charge (similarly to NTL/Telewest, except they charge 6p) and changed to per minute billing (previously per second), with call duration rounded up to the next minute.  In most cases, this results in increased call costs. BT has simplified mobile call costs (except for 3G) to 13p/8p/5p, some prices up, some down, but the 3p connection charge and per minute billing means calls will nearly all cost more.  BT has made small reductions to 0870/0845 call costs, 0870 weekdays down 0.51p, and 0845 weekend down 0.5p, but again the 3p set-up fee means many calls will cost more.  Any operators using 08 or 09 for two stage or call through services will be effected by the BT call charge changes. 

Some operators are following BT's lead with similar price changes.  Carphone Warehouse TalkTalk and Sainsbury's have introduced the same 3p call set-up fee and simplified mobile tariffs, Sky Talk has simplified mobile tariffs alone.

BT has formally announced that Home Highway is being retired on 28th February 2007 when service will cease (Business Highway ceases 31st July 2007). Home Highway uses that can not get ADSL are being offered a free conversion to analogue PSTN with free installation of a second PSTN line if requested.  Business Highway and ISDN2 (DASS2) users are offered free conversion to ISDN2e. 


Version 104 in late August 2006 adds 4tel Communications (business), Barablu (residential), PlusNet Home Phone (residential), Qualicom Aspire (business), Qudo (business) and United Worldwide Telecom (business) and updates BT, Call2Call (residential), Euphony (business and residential), HomeChoice (residential), Just Phone (residential), Liquid Telecom (business and residential), Lycatel (residential), NTL (residential), Nomi (residential), Red Telecom (business and residential), Sky (residential), Telewest (residential) and VoIPCheap (residential). Removed Interhouse Telecom. Video Networks (HomeChoice) has been taken over by Tiscali. Freetalk (Dixons) is ceasing service in September and suggesting it's customers sign-up to Vonage instead.

From September, BT is offering reduced business line installation and rental for those taking out 24 months contracts, installation will be £99 ( the same as it was before May when the price was increased to £106), and rental drops from £13.70 per month to £13.00.  BT has also increased the rental cost of Business Highway and ISDN2, presumably to penalise customers that do not migrate from these now obsolete services onto ISDN2e. BT has added another WiFi band.  Now that Ofcom restrictions have been removed, BT has changed it's terms and conditions so that price changes that are beneficial or have no effect on the customer need only be announced the day before they take effect, while price increases will only have a minimum of two weeks notice. 

Telewest has introduced innovative simplified packages, Talk Anywhere 200/400/800, giving 200/400/800 free minutes for £9/£18/£29 in addition to £11 line rental, the free calls being landline and mobile anywhere in the world including UK non-geographic and personal numbers, but excluding satellite, operator and 09 premium calls. The call prices work out at 4.5p/4.25p/3.6p per minute for the three packages respectively.


Version 103 in late July 2006 adds 0844 Calls (residential), BT Broadband Voice, Carphone Warehouse TalkTalk Business, FreeCall (residential), Jajah (residential), Phone Cheap (residential), WebCall Direct (residential) and Yourcalls.net (residential), and updates BT, 18185.co.uk (residential), 1899.com (residential), Discount Dial (residential), Carphone Warehouse TalkTalk (residential), First:Telecom (residential), FreedomCall (residential), Gem Telecom (business and residential), Gossiptel (residential), Gradwell (business), HIGHnet (business), Pipex HomeCall (residential). Sainsbury's (residential), Sky (residential), Tesco (residential), Toucan (residential) and VoIPCheap (residential).  Removed Telco Global and it's Enable Comms and Just Dial brands, bought by One.Tel and then by Carphone Warehouse, the web sites have finally disappeared. EurExcel and Vartec are now also owned by Carphone Warehouse and have been removed for old tariffs. Happy Talk has disappeared and been removed.  Quip has been removed for old tariffs, and is believed to be ceasing service.

Web page operators: Added two operators, Jajah and WebCall Direct, that offer a new way of making telephone calls, using a web browser to set-up a call between two telephones (landline or mobile), causing both telephones to ring and be connected. Note calls are not made using the PC, but with normal telephones. Jajah offers add-on for Outlook and Firefox that simplify making calls, allowing any telephone number to be clicked.  Jajah offers free calls between registered users in most major countries, WebCall Direct free calls to any numbers in most major countries but limited to six hours per week. Talkety offers a similar service but does not publish call costs.

Ofcom has removed price controls on BT, and expected line rental to go up and call prices down.  BT first announcement is an immediate reduction in the price of the BT Together 2 and 3 inclusive call packages by £1.55 and £4.55 a month respectively, now £14.95 and £20.95 a month, cheaper than several competitors. The package prices separate to line rental are £3.95 a month for inclusive inland off-peak calls and £9.95 a month for all inclusive inland calls. The £11/month BT Together 1 line rental remains unchanged.  From October, BT is replacing the 5.5p minimum residential call charge with a 3p connection charge (similarly to NTL/Telewest) and changing to per minute billing (currently per second), with call duration rounded up to the next minute.  In most cases, this will result in increased call costs. From October, BT is also simplifying mobile call costs (except for 3G) to 13p/8p/5p, generally slightly less than now, some prices up, some down, but the 3p connection charge and per minute billing means calls will nearly all cost more.  From October, BT is making small reductions to 0870/0845 call costs, 0870 weekdays down 0.51p, and 0845 weekend down 0.5p, but again the 3p set-up fee means many calls will cost more. 

From 31st July 2007, perhaps earlier in parts of the country, BT is ceasing service for Business Highway, ISDN2 (DASS2) and ISDN30 I431 (and presumably Home Highway).  Such customers needing to keep service, will have to pay to upgrade to ISDN2e or ISDN30e, £49.50 for the former, £10 per channel for the latter. Business Highway customers wanting to keep their two virtual analogue lines will need to install two new lines as well at almost £300 including keeping the telephone numbers. BT is offering free upgrades to ISDN2e  (new 12 month contract) and waiving contract early termination charges. This change is presumably because the Multi Service Access Nodes (MSANs) from Huawei and Fujitsu that BT is using to replace System X and AXE10 local telephone exchanges are incapable of supporting these ISDN services.

Ofcom has announced new telephone numbering plans.  A new 03 UK wide number range will be introduced, probably from October 2006, charged at no more than 01/02 numbers and included in inclusive call schemes.  0300 will be reserved for the public sector and non-profit organisations, anyone can use 0303, and 034 and 037 will be used for migration of 084 and 087 numbers. 070 personal numbers will either be discontinued or moved to 060 in late 2007 if there is a proven demand for such numbers, with call cost capping and pre-call price announcement to reduce scams.  075 will be used for mobile numbers.  08 call pricing may be made clearer.  Adult premium services to move to 098 in 2008, with other premium services moved to similar cost related numbers, subject to further consultation.  Ofcom plans no changes to 01/02 numbers.


Version 102 in late June 2006 adds BillSmart (business), Interhouse Telecom (residential) and Tiscali Netphone (residential), and updates BT, Call 18866 (residential), Easy-Dial (business and residential), EW Communications (residential), Focus 4U (business), Kingston Communications, NTL (residential), and Tiscali (residential). Dial00 has been removed.

BT has added four more personal numbering tariff bands and two more directory enquiries bands.  BT Broadband Talk Softphone is PC software that allows free VoIP calls to other Softphone users, or calls to normal numbers charged either to a BT Broadband Talk account or PAYG with a prepaid Top Up Service.


Version 101 in late May 2006 adds Demon (business), and updates BT, 18185.co.uk (residential), Call 18866 (residential), Cheapest Chat (residential), CountryCall (residential), Kingston Communications, NTL (residential), Telewest (residential), VoIPCheap (PC only residential)

BT has added another WiFi band, and set a price for of 50p/min for 00878 international universal personal telecomms numbers.  BT continues to change line rental and installation on an almost monthly basis, residential installation that last increased in February has gone up again from £99 to £125 (including VAT), business installation from £99 to £106 (plus VAT), discounts for multiple business line installations has been removed (making an increase of 50%), and a new business line takeover charge of £10 added.


Version 100 in late April 2006 adds Band Telecom (business), PlusNet (residential) and Work-Phones (business), and updates BT, 123 Call (residential), AbroadTel (residential), Bulldog (business and residential LLU), Business Communications (business), Carphone Warehouse TalkTalk (residential), Cheapest Chat (residential), Kingston Communications, PhoneBird (residential), Post Office (residential), Simply-Fone (residential) and Telewest (residential).  Ifinity Telephone seems to have disappeared and has been removed. British Gas (Centrica) has been removed since it's no longer selling it's own telecoms service, which was sold to The Carphone Warehouse. Telewest has been merged into NTL, and NTL has acquired Virgin Mobile, currently Telewest is still operating separately to NTL, but within a year both businesses will be rebranded as Virgin. 

A much quieter month from BT, another mobile WiFi band, two more directory enquiry bands and fixed fee band 31 charged at 9.99p for the government's new non-emergency 101 service.

Ofcom has finally published proposals that should see the price of 0870 calls drop to be similar to that of geographic national calls, but under pressure from the industry (that makes large profits from these numbers) has delayed the reduction for up to another two years.  Ofcom is proposing new 03 numbers to replace or supplement 0870 for nationwide companies.   There will be no change for 0844 or 0845 numbers, so many companies may simply move their numbers to these ranges, which are never included in free call packages and may be charged at up to 5p/minute at all times.  0871 will be regulated as premium numbers, and adult services on 08 ranges moved to 09 so they can be blocked. 


Version 99 in late March 2006 adds ACN (business) and FreedomCall (residential), and updates BT, 1899.com (residential), ACN (residential), Adept Telecom (business and residential), Budgetcom (residential), Cheapest Calls (residential), Cheapest Chat (residential), Dial Around (residential), DialWise (residential), Direct Save Telecom (residential and business), Discount Dial (residential), EW Communications (residential), HomeCall (residential), Lycatel (residential), One.Tel (business and residential), Telecom Plus (residential), Telediscount (residential), Telesavers (residential), Telestunt (residential), Vonage (residential and business). Homecall (Caudwell Communications) has been taken over by Pipex Communications.  Lo-Rate Telecom (business) has been removed for breaching Ofcom obligations issued due to over 800 customer complaints.

BT has made a lot of changes this month.  The minimum call charge for most residential calls has increased from 4.94p to 5.41p (including VAT), which also effects all those operators with call through or two stage dialling 08/09 numbers.  For business users still on the original BT Business tariff (and related tariffs that are percentage discounted such as BT Corporate Choices, Business Choice, Business Advantage, etc), the minimum cost increases from 4.2p to 5p (excluding VAT), local call cost up to 4p/min peak and 1p/min off-peak, and national call cost increases to 8p/min peak, 4p/min evening and 1.5p/min weekend.  Note these business increases do not effect most calls on BT Customer Commitment and BT Business Plans, nor has the cost of local NTS (0845) and national NTS (0870) calls been increased.  

BT has increased the cost of many off-peak international calls for the residential BT Together packages (evening and weekend calls now cost the same), so most major countries have increased from 9p/min to 10p/min off-peak. Japan and Hong Kong remain cheaper than Europe and the USA for some bizarre reason.  But BT has reduced call costs for the BT Together International Options (which costs £1/month extra), from 5p/min to 3p/min, and added more countries at this price, a total of 30 now.   

Call costs for BT's two residential VoIP services, BT Communicator (PC only) and BT Broadband Talk have been standardised and new countries added, with most major countries now 1.25p/min.  The package prices for BT Broadband Talk have been significantly reduced to £2.99/month for unlimited inland off-peak calls and £7.99/month including unlimited peak calls.

BT has added several new charge bands, FM8 for it's own mobile phones, FW1 and FW2 for calls to WiFi services, G23 and I27 charged at the old national rate, and another directory enquiries band, DQ72.  The cost of sending SMS text messages from fixed lines has been added to the comparison. 

BT has withdrawn from new supply Business Highway (Home Highway went last year), ISDN2 DASS2 and ISDN30 I421. 


Version 98 in late February 2006 adds ExchangeXP (business) and Focus 4U (business), and updates BT, 18185.co.uk (residential), AbroadTel (residential), Callserve (PC only residential), First Number (residential), QX Telecom (residential), RateBuster (residential), Resource Utilities (residential and business), Skype (PC only residential), SuperLine (business and residential), Swiftcall (business and residential), Telappliant VoIPTalk (residential), Tele2 (residential), Telesave (residential and business), Telewest (residential), TopUp2Talk (residential), Touch Telecom (business and residential), Toucan (residential) and Yellow Telecoms (business). Savant Sage Telecom, SmartCall and SpaceTel have been removed due to old tariffs. Severn Trent Telecoms is no longer offering business and residential services and has been removed. Thus (aka Demon) has announced the acquisition of Your Communications from United Utilities. Tspeak (previously Totalise) has been taken over by The Phone Co-Op and has been removed. United Resource Management seems to have disappeared and has been removed.

BT has reduced the cost of T-Mobile calls by a faction of a penny, increased residential new line installation from £77.99 to £99.99, and changed the residential line rental for extra lines again, for the third month running, now £144 a year.

Ofcom has reviewed the UK Telephone Numbering Plan and made a number proposals for changes, which are open for consultation. The proposals include 03 national numbers charged at the same cost as 01/02 (and included in unlimited plans) to replace 0845 and 0870, move 070 personal numbers to 06 to separate them mobile, and simplifying the 08 and 09 numbers are grouped so call cost and services are more easily identifiable.


Version 97 in late January 2006 adds Cheapest Chat (residential), Clever Rates (residential), CytaUK (residential), Discount Dial (residential), Ecomtel (residential), Joentelecom (business and residential), Lansdowne Telecom (business), Lo-Rate Telecom (business), Pipecall (business), Pipex (residential), VoIP-4U (business and residential), and updates BT, Axis Telecom (business and residential), Carphone Warehouse TalkTalk (residential), Joy Telecom (residential), Just Phone (residential), Kent Telephones (business),  Kingston Communications, Liquid Telecom (business and residential), Lloyds TSB Ideal (residential), My Mondo (residential), Nildram (residential), Nomi (residential), One.Tel (business and residential), Pipecall (residential), Sky Talk (residential) and Tesco (residential).  Mainstream Tele.Com appears to have disappeared and has been removed. Broadsystem Ventures 1602 is no longer marketed and has been removed. 3U Telecom has withdrawn from the UK and has been removed.

From 1st January 2006, BT increased BT Together Option 1 residential line rental by 50p a month, from £125.96 to £131.96 a year (when paid by direct debit or monthly payment plan) or £11 a month, business line rental remains unchanged, as do the BT Together Option 2 and 3 packages with free calls. The cost of renting additional residential lines came down in price by £12 a year during January, until BT corrected the price back to the original £138 a year in February.

The Carphone Warehouse has announced the acquisition of One.Tel (including Telco Global) from Centrica, and of Tele2.


Version 96 in mid December 2005 adds Call Union (residential), First:Telecom (business), Sip2Go (residential), TeleTop (residential), VoIPCheap (PC only residential) and updates BT, 123 Call (residential), 1899.com (residential), B4UDial (residential), British Gas (residential), Call 18866 (residential), Cheapest Calls (residential), CountryCall (residential), Dial Around (residential), Direct Save Telecom (residential and business), DrayTEL (residential), Easy-Dial (business and residential), EW Communications (business), First:Telecom (residential), Gem Telecom (business and residential), Happy Talk (residential), HIGHnet (business), HomeChoice (residential), HomeCall (residential), Kingston Communications, NTL (residential), Telediscount (residential), Telestunt (residential), TopUpNow (residential) .  RabbitRabbitRabbit (residential) has been renamed Red Talk, and CPS Unlimited (business) renamed Red Talk, all being brands of ICUK. UK Call has disappeared and has been removed. 123 Telecom has been removed to tariffs being too old. Crystal Telecom is no longer offering fixed line services, and has been removed.

BT has increased the cost of calling Timeline (aka speaking clock) to 30p per call, so don't use it as a test number.  BT has also added a new mobile telephone band with the same charges as T-Mobile and adjusted the cost of calling other mobiles, 02 and Orange very minor decreases, T-Mobile and Vodafone very minor increases.

To improve readability, the tariff band order in all the main comparison tables has been changed, so that most non-geographic bands now follow the international calls bands, rather then preceding them. Due to BT continually adding more directory enquiry, personal number, premium and other bands, the international bands had been dropping further and further down the tables.  Line rental, minimum and connection charges now follow the international bands. 


Version 95 in late October 2005 adds TopUpNow (residential) and Welcome Telecom (business), and updates BT, Bulldog (business and residential LLU), Call2Call (residential), Euphony (business and residential), One.Tel (business and residential), Telestunt (residential) and Tiscali (residential).  Renamed C2000 to the correct company name of TRA UK. 

BT has added three new premium tariff bands that each have a minimum charge of one minute rather than 5p, band P34 at 60p/min, P35 at 50p/min and P36 at 45p/min.  Also a new directory enquiry band DQ71 at 34p fixed fee and 14p/min, all including VAT. 

BT has increased the cost of business international calls for anyone that has not moved to BT Business Plan, BT Together or one of the large user discount schemes.  This has been done by allocating countries into one of 10 new business charge bands, and then rounding up the existing high prices to the same cost at all times in simple round figures, 20p, 25p, 30p, etc, up to £2 per minute, excluding VAT.  So calls to Europe that varied between 19.67p and 30.24p now all cost 30p/min (but only 5p/min on Business Plan).   BT has similarly increased the cost of Inmarsat and other satellite calls, for all business users, A is up from £5.05 to £6, Mini-M from £2.20 to £2.50 and Iridium £3 to £3.50. 


Version 94 in late September 2005 adds BT Communicator (PC only residential), Daisy Communications (business), EW Communications (business and residential), Freetalk (residential), PhoneBird (residential) and Skype (PC only residential) and updates BT, 18185.co.uk (residential), 1899.com (residential), AbroadTel (residential), Adept Telecom (residential), Budgetcom (residential), Business Communications (business), Call 18866 (residential), Call2Call (residential), Carphone Warehouse TalkTalk (residential), Gradwell (business), Just-Dial (residential), Kingston Communications, Post Office (residential), Simply-Fone (residential), Sky Talk (residential), Voicenet (residential)   E-shop Telecom seems to have been taken over by Daisy Communications, so has been removed. The Seven Telecom domain seems to have been hijacked and the web site lost, so it's business tariff has been removed.

Two VoIP services have been added this month that can only be used with PC software, not normal telephones, BT Communicator and Skype.

BT has withdrawn from new supply ISDN Home Highway lines, although in practice this means anyone wanting ISDN at home will need Business Highway instead for about £10 extra per month.  BT has introduced free Friends & Family Auto Update for BT Together which optimises the discount for the top called numbers for each bill, the top five for BT Together 1, top 10 for Together 2, top 15 for Together 3.  The Best Friend number is still nominated.  BT Together off-peak inland calls longer than an hour are now charged 3p/min rather than 1p/min.

BT offers two residential VoIP services for use with broadband internet: BT Communicator is PC software only with no monthly charge but no incoming telephone number either, that allows free PC-PC calls or chargeable PC-telephone calls, incoming PC calls need the PC to be left powered on; BT Broadband Voice costs from £4 a month with an 056 incoming telephone number and free telephone adaptor allowing a normal telephone to be used, off-peak inland calls are free up to one hour, peak calls are charged unless you pay from £10 a month for the Anytime plan.  Both VoIP services offer international calls at lower cost than BT Together, with Communicator much cheaper than Broadband Voice.   

Added new pages with much more detail on monthly changes, for members only. 

Ofcom has just published proposals that, if implemented, will mean 0870 calls are charged at the same cost as 020 national calls for any particular call package, ie free if national calls are free, and for 0871 numbers to become premium numbers regulated by ICSTIS. So companies wishing to make revenue from their incoming telephone calls will finally have to admit they are using premium telephone numbers.  Ofcom proposes no changes to 0845, to allow pay as you go internet services to prosper.  


Version 93 in late August 2005 adds 18185.co.uk (residential), Call2Save (business and residential), Dial Around (residential) and Happy Talk (residential), and updates BT, 123Call (residential), 3U Telecom (residential), CountryCall (residential), Gem Telecom (business and residential), Internet Telecommunications (business and residential), Lycatel (residential).  24Talk was taken over by OneBill Telecom so has been removed. Your Telecom has disappeared and been removed.

BT has increased the quarterly plan costs of it's historic business customer options, Business Choices, Complete Savings Plan, Key Discounts, and Corporate Choices, and added a new fixed charge cost band.  Call cost to the Channel Islands is now shown specifically, since BT charges more than national cost in the BT Together schemes. 3U Telecom has increased the cost of calling 0845 and 0870 numbers from 1p or 2p/min to 33p/min.


Version 92 in late July 2005 adds Axis Telecom (business and residential), Cheers International (residential), Midas Telecom (residential) and Telesavers (residential), and updates BT, Callserve (residential), DialWise (residential), One.Tel (business and residential), Phone Co-Op ( business and residential), Toucan (residential) and XFone (business and residential).  Apple Telecom seems to have disappeared and has been removed. British Gas (Centrica) is no longer offering business tariffs and has been removed. Comet has been removed, it now resells One.Tel.

From 1st August 2005, the residential BT Together peak cost of calling most countries increases by up to 2p/min, with increases for off-peak calls to a smaller number of countries.  These prices had mostly remained unchanged for the last six years, although it was only a year ago that most residential users saw the cost of international calls drop when they were moved onto BT Together - but now they go up. 


Version 91 in late June 2005 adds AbroadTel (residential), Babble (residential), Cheaper Call Rate (residential), DialWise (residential), Lycatel (residential), My Mondo (residential), Qdial (residential), Pipecall (residential) and Voipfone (residential), and updates BT, BT Business Plan, Easy-Dial (residential), First:Telecom (residential), Kingston Communications, One.Tel (business), SchoolTel (business), Sky Talk (residential), Solwise Telephony (business), Swiftcall (business and residential), Telappliant VoIPTalk (residential), Tele2 (residential), Telewest (residential), Tesco (residential), Telestunt (residential) and Touch Telecom (residential).

Another new directory enquiry band has been added costing £2.25 for the first minute of the call.  BT has reduced Vodafone peak cost slightly, but increased off-peak. BT has introduced a free service 'BT Privacy At Home' that includes free caller display (previously £21/year) and Telephone Preference Service (TPS) registration, as an opt in service for those making some calls with BT.


Version 90 in late May 2005 adds AOL Talk (residential), Beaming (residential), Britclick (residential), Direct Save Telecom (residential and business), First Number (residential), NewTel (residential), Nomi Dial (residential), Red Telecom (residential), Sainsbury's Telecom (residential), Splash Telecom (business), Switch Call (business), Telecubes (residential), Vonage (business), XLN Telecom (business) and Your Telecom (residential), and updates Carphone Warehouse TalkTalk (residential), GoTalk (residential), Just Phone (residential), Kingston Communications, Liquid Telecom (residential), Lloyds TSB Ideal (residential), QX Call (residential), SuperLine (business and residential), Tiscali (residential), Vartec (residential), and Vonage (residential).  No-Bill is now called eZe-Talk and has been updated.

Ofcom starts allocating new London exchange codes beginning with 3 in June, instead of new 7 or 8 codes (there are also a few 0 and 1 codes), but it will be a couple of months before they get allocated to end users. 


Version 89 in late April 2005 adds Unicom (business) and updates 123Call, 1899.com (residential), 21st-Century Telecom (business), Apple Telecom (residential), Argos Telecom (residential), Auracall (residential), B4UDial (residential), British Gas (residential), BT Broadband Voice, Bulldog (business and residential LLU), Business Communications (business), Call2Call (residential), Cheapest Calls (residential), CPS Connections (business), Easy-Dial (business and residential), Euphony (business and residential), Gem Telecom (business and residential), Gradwell (business), HomeChoice (residential), Equitalk (residential), Gossiptel (residential), Internet Telecommunications (business and residential), Kingston Communications, NTL (residential), One.Tel (residential), Post Office (residential), Simply-Fone (residential), Tele2 (residential), Telediscount (residential) and Toucan (residential).

Bandwidth Networks is now called BWN Telecom. Cable & Wireless has been removed due to lack of up to date information, but is still represented by it's resellers. Click Telecom seems to have disappeared. OC Communications and World Telecom have been removed due to lack of up to date information. Eden Communications is now reselling Alpha Telecom. Vartec Telecom Europe and EurExcel are now part of The Carphone Warehouse Group.


Version 88 in late March 2005 adds Ifinity Telephone (business and residential) and Wanadoo UK (residential), and updates BT, Call 18866 (residential), Budgetcom (residential), Callserve (residential), Carphone Warehouse TalkTalk (residential), C2000 (residential), Crystal Telecom (business), Easy-Dial (residential), Nildram (residential), Simply-Fone (residential), Sipgate (residential), Telco Global (residential and business) and Your Connection (business). Broadsystem Ventures Ltd is now called News Optimus Ltd. Noodle seems to have disappeared and has been removed.

BT has added new tariff bands for ISDN 64K data calls to UK mobile telephones, costing 32p to 50p per minute. 


Version 87 in late February 2005 adds Opal (business),  and updates Alpha Telecom (residential), BT, Call 18866 (residential), Callserve (residential), Carphone Warehouse TalkTalk (residential), Kalnet4u (residential), Kingston Communications, Telewest (residential) and Toucan (residential).

BT has added a new tariff band G21 for 'new voice' calls for 056 VoIP calls, which unusually is charged at the same price as inland calls for the BT Together and Business Plan packages, with the same capped call cost.  Telewest increased it's charges in January so a short peak call now costs double BT, and monthly rental is the same as BT. TalkTalk has joined the increasing list of companies charging extra for premium calls, 10% above the normal advertised price. 


Version 86 in late January 2005 adds Lo-Call (business), Post Office HomePhone (residential) and Vonage (residential), and updates BT, 1899.com (residential), 24 Talk (business), Auracall (residential), Bandwidth Networks (business), First National Telecom (residential), Gotalk (residential), NTL (residential) and Phone Co-Op (residential).

For residential users, from 16th February 2005, BT has extended the daytime peak period two hours, so it now starts at 6am rather than 8am, reducing the value of off-peak only inclusive call packages.  It's uncertain yet how many other operators will follow BT's lead with this effective price increase.


Version 85 in late December 2004 adds 123Call (residential), HomeChoice (residential), Kent Telephones (business), Liquid Telecom (business and residential), Nildram (residential), Sipgate (residential) and Telstra (business), and updates BT, Call 18866 (residential), Callserve (residential), Internet Telecom (business and residential), MCI (business), Sky Talk (residential), SunDial (residential), Voicenet (business and residential) and Your Communications (business).

BT is adding two more personal number charge bands next month, the first new bands in five months. There's a growing trend for broadband internet suppliers to be offering bundled telephone services, both VoIP and CPS, and vice versa. 

A new table has been added this month comparing 102 different business monthly packages, including line rental and unlimited calls, similar in format to the residential package table added last month.  But there are only five business operators offering unlimited calls. 

Due to ever increasing size, the printed Acrobat (PDF) document has been split into two parts, with tariffs and dialling codes. 


Version 84 in early November 2004 adds ACN (residential), B4UDial (residential), British Gas Business, Cheapest Calls (residential), Severn Trent Telecom (business and residential) and Telecom Plus (business), and updates 24Talk (business and residential), 3U Telecom (residential), British Gas (residential), Carphone Warehouse TalkTalk (residential), CPS Unlimited (residential), Crystal Telecom (business), Euphony (residential), First:Telecom (residential), Homecall (residential), Internet Telecommunications (residential and business), Lloyds TSB Ideal (residential), MCI (business), One Bill Telecom (business), One.Tel (residential), Rabbit Rabbit Rabbit (residential), Saga Telephone Service (residential), SuperLine (business and residential), Telecom Plus (residential), UK Call (residential), Universal Telecom (residential), Yellow Telecoms (business).  Affinity 247 seems to have disappeared. 

Blueridge Telecom (business) has been removed because it's policy of changing the cost per minute depending upon the length of each call makes cost comparison with other operators meaningless, with short calls costing several times the published tariff.

A new table has been added this month comparing 142 different residential monthly packages, including line rental and unlimited calls, with up to 10 different packages compared for some operators.  The package table shows the total monthly cost, including BT line rental where appropriate, for each package and the cost of local and national calls.  It excludes prepaid and two stage dialling (call through) operators. A similar table comparing business line rental and packages will be added shortly.

Magenta Systems is raising the annual membership cost for the UK Telecom Tariff Cost Comparisons this month for the first time in six years, during which time the number of operators covered has tripled, with more updates this year than previously.


Version 83 in early October 2004 adds Blueridge Telecom (business), Bulldog (business and residential LLU), DrayTEL (VoIP), Gem Telecom (business and residential), Just-Dial Saver (residential CPS), Kingston Communications Talkmore (residential CPS), Primus (business) and RateBuster (residential), and updates BT Together, 24Talk (business and residential), Call 18866 (residential), Comet (residential), Kingston Communications, Telco Global (business and residential), Telediscount (residential), Telesave (business and residential), Telestunt (residential) and Toucan (residential).

BT has increased the cost of calling Cyprus, Greece, Hong Kong, Singapore and Turkey for residential users. Some of the very low cost operators such as Call 18866, Telediscount and Telestunt are starting to increase their prices.


Version 82 in early September 2004 adds BT Business Plan Lite, and updates BT Basic, BT Customer Commitment, BT Business Plan, BT Together, 1899.com (residential), Call 18866 (residential), Carphone Warehouse TalkTalk (residential), First National Telecom (residential), HIGHnet (business), HomeCall (residential), Just Phone (residential), Kingston Communications, NTL (residential), One.Tel (business and residential), Phone Co-Op (residential), QX Telecom (residential), Saga (residential), SuperLine (business and residential), Talkcheaper.net (business), Tele2 (residential), Telecom Plus (residential), Telediscount (residential), Telesave (business and residential), Telestunt (residential), Telewest (residential), Tesco Talks (residential), Wight Cable (residential) and XFone (residential).  Total Communications Solutions has gone.

BT has reduced mobile call costs this month (except O2 and T-Mobile weekend cost which go up), due to the Competition Commission's 2002 enquiry into excessive cost. BT has also added capped mobile calls for business users (spending more than £500 per year) with a 7p connection charge then 10p/min up to a maximum of 30p (ex VAT), so a 30 second call will cost 12p (double non-capped cost) but calls more than about 2 minutes are cheaper and capped. For residential users, BT Together Call Mobile option for £18/year gives a 33% discount on mobile rates.

The new BT Business Plan Lite has 10p (ex VAT) capped local and national calls (connection cost 2p then 3.5p/minute to a maximum of 10p) and reduced international call costs, 3p to the USA and 5p to much of Europe. About half of BT competitors now charge more than BT.  Unlike existing BT Business Plans, there is no minimum commitment call spend with Business Plan Lite, so it effectively replaces BT Standard and the Choices discount schemes for businesses, in the same way BT Together replaced BT Standard in July for residential users.  Only if all national calls are currently costing less than 5.5p, will BT Standard still be cheaper than BT Business Plan Lite. 

1899.com is now charging only 0.5p/min (plus 3p connection) to some countries, and only the 3p connection for untimed local and national calls, while Call18866 only 1p connection and the Phone-Cop only 1.18p connection.  Unlike the 5p and 6p per call off-peak tariffs offered by many operators, these low prices are 24/7. 


Version 81 in late July 2004 adds BT Business Plan (CR) and updates BT Together and Broadband Voice, 1899.com (residential), 24Talk (business and residential), Budgetcom (residential), Call 18866 (residential), Comet (residential), Connaught Telecom (business and residential), Just Dial (residential), NTL (residential), Post Office (residential), Sky Talk (residential), Swiftcall (business and residential), Telediscount (residential), Telestunt (residential), Tiscali (residential), Toucan (residential) and VarTec (residential). International Telecom PLC has been renamed to Internet Telecom PLC. Telediscount and Telestunt have increased many peak prices.

The Post Office Pay as You Go tariff is being replaced by HomePhone later this year. Swiftcall offers pre-paid unlimited calls to 19 countries and the UK for a £19.99/month.  E-Telecom (Glow Telecom) has been removed due to lack of current tariffs.  IDD band 12 for Sri Lanka has been added.


Version 80 in late June 2004 adds Noodle (residential) and Telappliant (residential), and updates BT Together, BT Broadband Voice, British Gas (residential), Business Communications (business), Call 18866 (residential), Carphone Warehouse TalkTalk (residential), Equitalk (residential), First:Telecom (residential), Gossiptel (residential), International Telecom (residential and business), Kalnet4u (residential), Kingston Communications, Sky Talk (residential), Telecom Plus (residential), Tele2 (residential), Telco Global (business and residential), Telediscount (residential), Telewest (residential), Toucan (residential), Voicenet (residential and business),

While most operators now offer schemes for unlimited inland calls, Telco Global is the first to offer unlimited international calls to 40 countries for £29.99 a month as an extra for it's Freetalk accounts. The Dolphin Tetra network is closing in July so call tariffs to it have been removed. GKC, SevernTrent and Talk-UK seem to have disappeared. Powergen and United Utilities no longer offer telecoms. Unitel's tariffs are too old and have been removed.

From 1st July 2004, BT is migrating all residential customers on the BT Standard tariff to BT Together Option 1, with the benefit of lower calls costs. The rental cost of BT Together Option 1 is reducing by £1 a month, but will still mean an effective rental increase of £1 per month, or £3.15 increase if the inclusive call allowance is used.  Reduced call costs should offset this rental increase, except for the 30% of customers that use other licensed operators for their calls.  This change will also prevent other operators continuing to make claims about massive call cost reductions against BT Basic, and some may even have to admit their calls cost more than BT.  Later in the year, BT Wholesale Access Phase 2 will be allow more operators to charge line rental as well as calls, so the BT bill disappears. The BT Standard tariff and related option schemes have been removed from the residential tables since they are now only applicable to the small number of subscribers without a mobile telephone on the Light User Scheme and for some ISDN inclusive call allowances.  BT Standard remains in the business tables.

To ease comparison between operators, four new tables have been added to the tariff comparison this month, sorted by increasing price for selected inland and international tariffs, for business and residential operators.  National and two mobile call costs are compared in the inland table, and France, USA and Pakistan in the international table, resulting in much easier to view tables of two pages each.   


 

Version 79 in late May 2004 adds Crystal Telecom (business), Gossiptel (residential), OneBill Telecom (business) and Your Connection (business), and updates Connaught Telecom (business), Easy-Dial (business and residential), Euphony Communications (residential), HIGHnet (business), HomeCall (residential), One.Tel (residential), Telediscount (residential), Tesco Talk (residential), Telestunt (residential), Tiscali (residential), TSpeak (residential) and VarTec (residential). Pathfinder Telecom and Quick2Call have been removed. No BT tariff changes this month.


Version 78 in late April 2004 adds 1899.com (residential), 24Talk (business and residential), Business Communications (business), Gradwell Virtual PBX (business), HIGHnet (business), Joy Telecom (residential) and United Resource Management (business), and updates Apple Telecom (residential), Call 18866 (residential), CPS Connections (business), EurExcel (residential), First:Telecom (residential), Kingston Communications, NTL (residential), Planet Talk (residential), Toucan (residential), VarTec (residential) and Yellow Telecoms (residential). Certa Telecom/MyMinutes appears to have gone and has been removed. Citrus Telecom is no longer offering end user services.

No BT tariff changes this month, calm before the storm, although a lot of new countries have been added to international mobile number list for which higher call charges apply.


Version 77 in late March 2004 adds 3U Telecom (residential), Lloyds TSB Ideal (residential), Seven Telecom (business), Yellow Telecoms (residential), Your Communications (business) and updates BT, Carphone Warehouse TalkTalk (residential), e-Shop Telecom (business), NTL (residential), Simply-Fone (residential), SuperLine (business and residential), Swiftnet (business and residential), Telesave (business and residential), Toucan (residential), and United Utilities (residential). Servista has closed it's retail division and transferred customers to OneBill Telecom, but still manages services for Tesco and Lloyds TSB.

BT has introduced BT Call Centre Option for ISDN30 at £25 per month per channel (minimum eight channels) for unlimited inland calls up to 90 seconds long each, then charged at 2.4p for extra time.

From 1st April 2004, BT has reduced the PSTN monthly cost of BT Together 2 (untimed off-peak inland calls) by £1 a month to £16.50/month, and BT Together 3 (untimed inland calls) by £3 a month to £25.50/month.  These reductions close the gap on competitive untimed packages, with T3 now being just £16 more than standard line rental (but only £15 from 1st July).  Home Highway rental has not changed.


Version 76 in late February 2004 adds 123 Telecom (business) and Toucan (residential), and updates Alpha Telecom (residential), Call 18866 (residential), Callserve (residential), Carphone Warehouse TalkTalk (residential), CPS Unlimited (business), Homecall (residential), Kingston Communications, One.Tel (residential), Rabbit Rabbit Rabbit (residential), Sky Talk (residential), Telediscount (residential), Telesave (business and residential), Telestunt (residential, now 1p 24/7 to much of the world) and VarTec (residential).

BT has been very quiet this month. Reach Telecom has been renamed Caudwell Communications but is trading as Homecall.


Version 75 in mid January 2004 adds Adept Telecom (business and residential), BT Broadband Voice (VoIP), One-Tel UK Talk (residential), Rabbit Rabbit Rabbit (residential) and Voicenet (business and residential), and updates Argos Telecom (residential), BT, British Gas (residential), Cable Direct (business), Call 18866 (residential), Equitalk (residential), GoTalk! (residential), Kingston Communications, Just Phone (residential),  One.Tel (business and residential), Phonecard Services (residential), The Phone Co-Op (business and residential),  QX Telecom (residential), Saga (residential) and Simply-Fone (residential) .  Omne Communications is now WightCable. Evoxus (Commensus), Interglobe and Say Telecom have been removed.

BT has increased the extra cost of many international mobile calls from 20p to 25p a minute over the normal international call charge, so the basic price to France is now about 53p/min and Spain 60p/min.  BT has added two more 118 directory price bands making a total of 64. 

BT Broadband Voice uses Voice over IP with an ADSL line (for a second telephone 'line') or with a cable modem, the service includes an 05511 prefix number for incoming calls (band G6 5p/min), monthly rental £7,50, calls must be pre-paid but off-peak inland calls free for first hour. Requires a £60 Cisco telephone adaptor that allows a normal telephone to be connected to an LAN router or switch, but there is an offer so the adaptor is free until the end March 2004 and BT is also offering a maximum £100 call account with the offer.


Version 74 in late November 2003 adds Budgetcom (residential), ICUK (business), International Telecom (business and residential), SuperLine (business), Tele2 (residential) and updates BT, Affinity 247 (residential), Auracall (residential), Carphone Warehouse TalkTalk (residential), First:Telecom (residential). Kalnet4u (residential), Post Office (residential), Telco (business and residential), Telediscount (residential) and Telewest (residential).

BT increased the cost of calling 45 countries from 4th November 2003, by moving them into different charge bands.  The following table shows the changes. Band 18 is new, costing between £1.65 and £1.75 a minute on the BT basic tariff.   BT also added four price bands (G16 to G20) with various local rate costs but without discounts, and four more 118 directory bands making a total of 62.

ISO Country New Band Old Band
American Samoa 18 13
Andorra 3 1
Antarctica 18 13
Belize 9 8
Chad 18 13
Comoros 18 10
Cook Islands 18 13
Cuba 18 13
Diego Garcia 17 13
Faroe Islands 2 1
French Polynesia 17 13
Guam 18 13
Guinea-Bissau 18 13
Guyana 13 8
Haiti 13  
Kiribati 18 13
Korea, Democratic People's Republic of 18 13
Malta 2 2
Marshall Islands 17 13
Micronesia, Federated States of 17 13
Myanmar 18 13
Nauru 18 13
New Caledonia 17 13
Northern Mariana Islands 18 13
Palau 18 13
Rodriguez Islands 18  
Ross Island, Antartica 13  
Samoa 17 13
San Marino 3 1
Sao Tome and Principe 18 13
Solomon Islands 17 13
Somalia 18 10
Tajikistan 13 8a
Tokelau 17 13
Tristan da Cunha 17 13
Turkmenistan 12 8a
Tuvalu 18 13
Vanuatu 18 13
 
Russian Federation regions
 
 
Khabarovsk 8 8a
Nakhodka 8 8a
Sakhalin 8 8a
Tartarstan 8 8a

 


Version 73 in mid October 2003 adds CPS Connections (business), Easy-Dial (business), No Bill (residential), Solwise (business) and Topup2Talk (residential), and updates BT, Broadsystem Ventures 1602 (residential), C2000 Ltd (residential), Call2Call (residential), Easy-Dial (residential), Euphony (residential), First National GoTalk! and Calling Card (residential), First:Telecom (residential). Just-Dial (residential), Kingston Communications, One.Tel (business and residential), Reach Telecom (residential), Savant Sage Telecom (business), Simply-Fone (residential), Sky Talk (residential), SunDial (residential), Telco (business and residential), Telecom Plus (residential), Telediscount  (residential), Telewest (business), and Tiscali (residential).  Breathe has returned to it's original name of First:Telecom. N-Power has apparently sold it's telephony customers to Tiscali, it's web site no longer mentions telephony so it has been removed. Tra UK has been removed due to massive price increases. Two interesting new service concepts are added this month: 

Topup2Talk (from Telco/Just Dial) is a pre-paid service offering calls at 1p/min to much of the world via an 020 number (0800 for 3p/min extra), with account top-up using a fixed fee £1 premium number, that adds £1 for each call.  Topup2Talk accounts may be associated with fixed line or mobile numbers, the latter may also be topped-up via a £3 SMS.  Access to 020 numbers is then free for all those on the increasingly common 'call options' packages.  

Happy Talk Direct from Seven Telecom allows anyone to set-up a UK number (typically 0844) from a web page that is redirected to a fixed international  number, with calls to much of the world charged at 5p/min.  Once set-up (for free), only the UK number needs to be dialled, rather than two numbers with normal call through operators, making it easier to use for many people. Also ideal for overseas businesses wanting to promote a number that's cheaper for most people to call.   


Version 72 in mid September 2003 adds Call 18866 (1p/min to much of the world), Tesco Talk (residential) and Telestunt (residential), and updates BT, Euphony (residential), Callserve (residential), Kingston Communications, Simply-Fone (residential), Sky Talk (residential), Telco (business and residential), Telediscount (residential) and UK Call (residential).

The list of 118 Directory Enquiry Codes is now available to non-members, but beware this large includes a large number of companies that don't appear to have yet launched services.

We apologise for the various server problems accessing Online CodeLook in the past few months.  Although these problems now appear to have disappeared on their own (probably a Microsoft critical server update), there is now also Alternate CodeLook on a different server and location in case of future problems.

BT has reduced some mobile telephone call charges in belated response to the Competition Commission’s report several months ago, and introduced more personal numbering and directory enquiry tariff bands. The following comment the from BT Business International Price Changes FAQ relating to call charge increases to some minor countries (including Andorra) in November provides an insight into the widely differing costs between countries.

Q8. Why are calls to the USA and Australia cheaper than to Andorra for example?
A8. BT believes that the price to a particular country should reflect the cost of sending a call there. The majority of BT's costs are known as the accounting rate - this is the payment we have to make to the foreign telephone company for delivering the call. In the case of Andorra, the rate is still very high, especially when compared with the USA and Australia. The payment BT has to make to deliver a call to Andorra is over 10 times that for the USA, and over 6 times that for Australia. Surprisingly distance has very little to do with the cost to BT of sending a call, which means that it is quite reasonable for us to set a price - to the USA and Australia, for example - which is lower than the price for Andorra, because it costs us less to send a call to the USA and Australia. Where BT has been able to negotiate lower accounting rates with foreign telephone companies (the USA and Australia are good example); it has been able to pass these cost savings on to customers in the form of lower prices. Where call volumes are very high the economies of scale also helps reduce the cost to BT of sending a call to a particular country. For example, BT sends around 920 times as much telephone traffic to the USA as it does to Andorra, and 247 times as much to Australia..


Version 71 in early August 2003 returns MCI WorldCom (business) and Breathe Talk (residential), and updates BT, Euphony (residential), First National (residential), Kalnet4u (residential), Kingston Communications, NTL (residential), Simply-Fone (residential), Sky Talk (residential), and Telesave (business and residential). TalkUK Plc (ex EcosseTel and UKBell) has withdrawn from indirect telephony and so has been removed.  Eurobell (Sussex) indirect customers have moved to Adept Telecom.

BT has added a new mobile phone band for Hutchinson 3G, also new personal numbering and directory enquiry tariff bands.

Added the BT Together International Option that reduces to 5p the cost to many countries for £12 per year.  BT Business Plan has added capped international calls, for a spend over £750, USA calls cost a maximum of 13p for the first hour, while Europe, Japan and Australia similarly cost 23p.

More companies are reacting to the recent BT Together untimed packages, including Euphony and Sky Talk this month, adding to One.Tel and Carphone Warehouse.  BT followed Telewest and NTL.

The old 192/153 BT directory enquires numbers cease on 24th August, look at UK New Directory Enquires for some of the choices or this site's Directory Enquiry Codes - 118 (members only).


Version 70 in late June 2003 adds new operators Alpha Easy (residential), Comet (residential), Simply-Fone (residential) and Talk - Pathfinder (business) and updates BT, Broadsystem Ventures 1602 (residential), One.Tel (residential), QX Telecom (residential), Sky Talk (residential), SunDial (residential), SuperLine (residential), Talk - Pathfinder (residential), Telco (business and residential), Universal Telecom (residential), UK Call  (residential) and United Utilities (residential).  Callfox is closing at the end of June and has been removed. WorldCom/MCI and Thus have been removed due to lack of current information. Eurobell no longer publishes tariffs separately to Telewest.  Cause Call seems to have disappeared.   

BT has added a few more multi-media, premium and directory enquiry tariff bands.  One.Tel has added a Total UK Calls option giving unlimited peak and off-peak inland calls for £13.99 per month with no call length restrictions.


Version 69 in late May 2003 adds new operators Auracall (residential), Bandwidth Networks (business), Certa Telecom (residential), Eden Communications (business), Mainstream Tele.Com (business and residential),  XFone (business and residential), and updates BT, Affinity247 (residential). Broadsystem Ventures 1602 (residential), Carphone Warehouse (residential), Enable Communications (business), Kingston Communications, PowerGen (residential), Quick2Call (residential), QX Call (residential), Sky Talk (residential), SwiftNet, SunDial (residential), Tra UK (residential), and Telediscount (residential).  Breathe (previously called ACC, NETnet, WorldxChange, Atlantic, First Telecom, Eurocall, etc) has been removed due to Affinity Wireless being in administration, the client base has apparently now been taken over by Impello. 

From 1st June 2003, BT is making it's first cut in standard local call rates for five years, reducing evening cost from 1.5p to 1p (inc VAT), weekend national rate (and 0870) also reduces from 2p to 1.5p.  The tariffs for various operators using 0845 and 0870 numbers have been reduced to the new BT prices, although the reduced income may cause these numbers to be replaced. 

The BT Together discount schemes are being restructured, with cheaper inland calls, while the BT Working Together (for residential lines) discount scheme is being discontinued and has been removed.   

BT Together Option 1 - rental cost £34.50 per quarter (inc VAT), charges inland geographic evening and weekend calls at a fixed cost of 6p for the first 60 minutes, then charged per minute.  No special exclusions.  This replaces the existing BT Together tariff, but the previous call allowance of £28.80 per year has disappeared effectively increasing the cost for those who make few chargeable calls.  Short off-peak calls effectively have a minimum cost of 6p instead of 5p although national day time calls are reduced from 4p to 3p.  Carphone Warehouse has introduced a competitive tariff called Talk70 with maximum 70 minute long calls for 5.5p, and no extra rental.  Including the BT basic £25.80 call allowance, BT Together rental is now almost £44 higher per year.

BT Together Option 2 - rental cost £52.50 per quarter (inc VAT), makes inland geographic evening and weekend calls free for the first 60 minutes, then charged per minute. Excludes calls to internet providers. Service may be withdrawn if used for telemarketing calls or if use degrades the quality of service for other users. This replaces the existing BT Together Local Calls Option that costs £43.50 per quarter so is also a cost increase.

BT Together Option 3 - rental cost £85.50 per quarter (inc VAT), makes all inland geographic calls free for the first 60 minutes (including day time), then charged per minute. Same exclusions as Option 2.

This is the first time BT has offered untimed peak rate calls. Option 2 competes with Telewest Talk Evenings and Weekends that costs £51.50 per quarter (or £61.50 including comparable priced international calls). Option 3 competes with Telewest Talk Unlimited that costs £78 per quarter (or £87 including comparable priced international calls).


Version 68 in late April 2003 adds new operators Call2Call (residential), Callthrough.co.uk (residential), Quick2Call (residential) and United Utilities (residential), and updates 21st Century Telecom (business), BT basic, Connaught Communications (business), First National GoTalk!  (residential), SchoolTel Pathfinder (business), SuperLine (residential), Tiscali (business and residential), UKCall (last month VAT exclusive prices were accidentally shown) and Vartec (residential).

BT has added several new fixed fee call bands, and two more directory enquiry bands. The Option 15 discount scheme is not available for new supply from 7th April 2003.


Version 67 in late March 2003 adds new operators TalkUK Plc (residential), Tiscali SimplyDial (residential), SchoolTel Uniworld (business), SchoolTel Pathfinder Telecom (business) and SchoolTel Ventelo (business), UKCall (business and residential),  Universal Telecom (Timepiece Lda) (residential), and updates BT basic, C2000 Ltd (residential), Carphone Warehouse (residential), Certa Telecom (business), e-Shop Telecom (business), One.Tel (business and residential), Powergen, Telco (residential), Telediscount and Telewest.  Nevada Tele.Com has been removed (taken over by Energis).

Telediscount now offers a flat 2p to many countries which is better than the previous local peak rate and probably more realistic than cheap local. SchoolTel has three introduced special CPS packages aimed at educational users.



Version 66 in mid February 2003 adds new operators Carphone Warehouse (residential), Savant Sage Telecom (residential), and updates BT basic, Affinity 247 (residential), Just-Dial, KDDI Europe, Kingston Communications, QX Telecom (residential), SuperLine, Telediscount and Telewest. Callmonitor has been removed.

BT has added yet more directory enquiry bands. Telewest residential phone charges are increasing at a time when most operators are reducing charges, but an international call plan has been added with very low prices for many countries. Telewest to Telewest free off peak calls have ceased, now the 6p minimum call charge applies. 



Version 65 in mid January 2003 adds new operators Cable Direct (business) and Saga Telephone Service (residential), and updates BT basic, BT Together, BT Commitment, BT Business Plan, Alpha Telecom Rhubarb, Argos Telecom, breathe (previously called Atlantic Telecom and First Telecom), Cable & Wireless (business), Callserve, Citrus Telecom (residential), Easy-Dial (new access numbers), Kalnet4u (new access numbers), Kingston Communications, NTL (residential), One-Tel,  (new access numbers), The Phone Co-Op, Phonecard Services, Powergen, Quip (residential), SuperLine, Talk (Pathfinder), Telediscount (new access numbers), Telesave, Telewest and Tspeak. ASDA Calltime, Callsave UK, PD Together and Pre-dial have been removed.

BT marketing has been busy in the past month, adding two new personal numbers tariff bands, two more premium bands, eight more directory enquiry bands and a new 'BT Business Plan' tariff that has local and national calls capped at 10p cost (max one hour) for a minimum annual call spend of £500 per site or £5,000 per customer (multiple sites).

BT has roughly halved the cost of calling India, Pakistan and Bangladesh, and it's BT Together rate for those countries is now lower than many competitors. 


Version 64 in late November 2002 adds new operator Talkcheaper.net (business and residential) and updates Alpha Telecom (residential), BT basic, BT Commitment Reward, Cable & Wireless (business), Certa Telecom (business),  Easy-Dial, Kingston Communications, NTL (residential), Planet Talk (residential), Talk (Pathfinder), Telco (residential), Telediscount, Telesave and Vartec.

36 new tariff bands have been added for the new 118xxx directory enquiry numbers that are expected to start on 9th December 2002.  These bands cover a wide range of costs with some services charged per minute, others a fixed cost per call, more at a fixed cost on answer and then charged per minute as well, and finally a new BT charging concept of a fixed cost for the first minute, and then a per minute cost  subsequently (charged per second).  The Directory Enquiry Codes table (members only) shows the charges for each different service, but only 52 (out of 308) services have been allocated a charge band with many other services presumably not yet ready to launch. CodeLook has been improved to display details of the new directory enquiry codes.  The old mobile and premium codes obsoleted in April 2001 have now been removed from the Special Services tables.   

The cost of delivering calls to China increased for all operators in November, some have announced price increases, a few may absorb the extra cost, others may just charge more without announcing it.


Version 63 in late October 2002 adds new operators Dial00 (residential), Kalnet4u Country Call (residential), Reach Telecom (residential), Tiscali (business) and updates  Broadsystem Ventures 1602 (residential), BT, Cable & Wireless (business), Euphony (business), PowerGen (residential), QX Telecom (residential),  SunDial (residential), SuperLine (residential), Telco (residential), Telecom Plus (residential), Telewest (residential) and Tiscali (residential). Angel Network (a Unitel reseller) has been removed.

BT has added two more personal numbering charge bands.  BT now has literally hundreds of different business tariffs, for varying spend levels, contract terms and tariff period variations.  Five recent BT business tariffs have been added, BT Commitment Reward for spending up to £500 per year, and BT Customer Commitment for up to £5,000 per year (four variations).

The new 118xxx directory enquiry numbers are expected to start on 9th December 2002 (with existing 192/153 numbers ceasing in August 2003), prices should be in the next update.


Version 62 in mid September 2002 adds new operators Certa Telecom (business), KDDI Europe (residential), SunDial (residential) and Tra UK (residential), and updates 21st-Century Telecom (business), Affinity 247 (residential), Broadsystem Ventures 1602 (residential), BT, E-Shop Telecom (business), Equitalk (residential) NTL (residential), QX Telecom (residential), Sky Dial (residential), SuperLINE (residential),  Swiftcall (business), Swiftnet (residential), Telediscount (residential) and Tspeak UK (previously Totalise Telecom). Eurocall has been removed because the company does not publish tariffs.

BT has adjusted mobile call charges, yet again, with business users on 'Together' tariffs now expected to pay slightly more for calls to mobiles than residential users, the reverse of most business tariffs.


Version 61 in mid August 2002 adds new operators Argos Telecom (residential). Talk-UK (residential), and PD Together (residential) and  updates Affinity 247 (residential), BT, GoTalk! (residential) Kingston Communications, NTL (residential),  One.Tel. The Phone Co-Op (business and residential), Quip (residential), QX Telecom (residential), Resource Utilities (business and residential), Savant Sage Telecom (business), Sky Talk (residential), Telecom Plus (residential), Telediscount (residential), Telesave (residential), and World Telecom (business). 

The Cable & Wireless residential services sold to NTL and then on to N-Power have finally been removed. Eurobell residential customers have now been transferred to Telewest tariffs. Jippii! SuperLINE seems to have been closed down or sold by it Finnish owner, but has not been removed yet. Our mobile tariff comparisons have been discontinued. 

BT has increased business line rentals, introduced yet more premium bands, and adjusted mobile call charges, again.  BT is introducing wholesale access for analogue exchange lines in September which will allow other licensed operators with CPS to offer a single bill combining line rental and calls.   


 

Version 60 in late June 2002 adds new operators E-Telecom (Glow Telecom) residential and Pre-Dial.Com (Lexgreen Services Ltd) residential, and updates Alpha Telecom, C2000 Ltd, Callfox, Citrus, Euphony business, GoTalk!, Just Dial, Phonecard Services, QX Telecom, Swiftcall, Telco GC and Telesave. Out of date tariffs removed this month are London Digital and Share-Dial. 

No BT changes this month except increases in BT Together Surftime rentals.

N-Power is this month ceasing the original 131 indirect service started by Mercury in the eighties that used an account number and optional account code.  There are still many loyal users that found the account code useful to split the telephone bill between house mates, clients, etc, and are all now looking for such a service.  Swiftcall and Telesave offer prepayment accounts with a PIN, allowing more than one account on the same telephone number.  The Phone Co-Op, QX Telecom offer account code for business users.  If any other operators have account code capability, please let us know.  

To ease printing the UK Telecom Tariff Comparisons, a new 248 page Acrobat (PDF) file has been added for business members which contains 11 sections of tariff, numbering and operator information.  The Acrobat file is the same as the printed version received by Comprehensive Members.   


 

Version 59 in late May 2002 adds new operators Callmonitor (business) and updates 21st-Century-Telecom (business), BT, Enable Communications business, First National Telecom residential, Go Talk! residential, Kingston Comms, Npower residential,  Telco GC business and residential, Telecom Plus, Telesave, Telewest business, Unitel residential and World Telecom. Out of date tariffs removed this month are COLT, Discount Telecom, Energis, Inclarity, Interoute, M-Line, Redstone, Solar, Telecommunications 2000 and UKBell.

BT has changed mobile call costs for the second time in the same month. Operators are beginning to introduce specific tariffs for use with carrier pre-selection (CPS), with better value than normal indirect tariffs.

A new Directory Enquiry Code table has been added for the 118xxx services due to start later this year, but no price bands yet (members only). Note there are some issues displaying the new codes in CodeLook, which will be resolved before they actually come into use.

Earlier versions included international mobile dialling code consolidated from a number of different sources since BT only listed a few. From 1st May 2002 BT Retail has added a vast number of new international mobile codes that are applicable to all BT customers (not just BT Together), so the tables have been changed to use only the BT retail codes and ignore those from other operators (including BT wholesale that publishes a different list). This means that many new international mobile countries have been added (like Saudi Arabia) but others removed since BT has not listed them (such as Argentina and Philippines) - these last two countries have different mobile codes for each geographic code (thousands for Argentina) which may be why BT has decided to ignore them. So this older information is not lost, a spreadsheet mobile-extra.xls has been added to the zips.  In the future we plan to list international mobile codes for specific operators as part of the Numbering services.


Version 58 in late April 2002 adds new operators e-Shop Telecom (business), EurExcel (residential), The Phone Co-Op (business), QX Telecom (business and residential) and Total Communication Solutions (business), and updates BT, Apple Telecom, Easy-Dial (UK mobile for 10p), Kingston Comms, Smartcall and Vartec. Amerada Telecom tariffs have been removed due to the service being withdrawn.

BT has substantially increased the number of countries surcharged for international mobile calls under the existing BT Together discount schemes and extending the surcharge to standard international charges.  The previous special mobile charges are being replaced by a straight 20p (incl VAT) surcharge per minute in addition to the international call cost.  Currently, our list of international mobile numbers available to paid members and in CodeLook is compiled by combining BT retail and wholesale lists with those of several other operators and so does not reflect the charging for any specific operator - most operators have compiled subtly different lists of international mobile codes (even BT has three different lists).   From the next version, the main international mobile number list will reflect BT retail only, with a separate mobile list of countries for which BT is not (yet) charging a surcharge.  Note that none of this effects the USA where calls to mobiles cost no more than normal calls.

It's interesting to see some business operators offering Telephone Preferential Service barring for outgoing calls, saving the TPS licensing cost, the administrative hassle of using the list and wasted calls. 


Version 57 in late March 2002 adds new operators Click Telecom (residential) and OC Communications (business), and updates breathe (previously called Atlantic Telecom and First Telecom), Callfox, Easy-Dial, Enable Communications, Equitalk, Interglobe, Kingston Comms, One.Tel, Phonecard Services, Smartcall and Telco GC.  Atlantic Telecom direct tariffs have been removed.

The Operators and Notes table now shows when tariffs were last checked if the tariffs are older than three months, in addition to when the tariffs became effective. This typically means the operator has emailed stating there are no changes this month, or the web page is unchanged.  Note that some operators may not keep their web site up to date, and worse, don't date their tariffs either.


Version 56 in late February 2002 adds new operators OC Communications (residential),  (residential), Omne Communications (residential) and Severn Trent Talk (residential), Talk (Pathfinder Telecommunications) residential, and updates Alpha Telecom (again), British Gas Communications (Centrica), Callfox, Euphony, Swiftcall, Telediscount, Telewest (business and residential) and Tiscali (previously Liberty Surf). Removed SpaceTel residential tariff.

An extra 50 North American area codes have been added to the country list. Telewest is increasing all residential international tariffs from 1st April 2002, so most European off peak calls cost will be well over double that of BT Together (25p against 8.99p) and higher than BT undiscounted weekend (23.11p) even before the 5p extra connection charge is considered.  There has been an general trend of increasing tariffs in the past few weeks.

Oftel has just completed an open consultation about tariff comparison web sites, Magenta System's response to the consultation is available here, and recommends a more standardised means of operators publishing tariffs to allow improved comparisons.


Version 55 in late January 2002 adds new operators Affinity 247 (residential),  Amerada (residential), and Evoxus - Commensus (residential), and updates Alpha Telecom, Angel Network, BT, Cable & Wireless business, Callfox, Easy-Dial, Kingston Comms, NTL residential, One.Tel business and residential, Telecom Plus, Telewest and Vartec.

Removed old tariffs for ACN, Cable & Wireless, Primus, RSL COM, Telephone Network, Telia, Thus residential, Torch (now Kingston inbusiness) and Universal Comms. Atlantic Telecom will be removed or renamed next month once it becomes clear which services have survived, if any.

BT has added five new price bands, personal numbering PN2 at 50p at all times, premium P28 37.5/25/12.5p per min and MM1/MM2/MM3 which combine a fixed fee (15p to 50p) and a per minute cost.  No idea what services are planned for these numbers. BT has also rationalised the confusing BT Together names, so that BT Talk Together becomes BT Together - Local Calls Option (UK Calls Option was added last month), and BT Surf Together is now BT Together - Surf Calls Option.

Further to the comments about Carrier Pre-Selection last month, it should be noted these comments were primarily aimed at residential users, for business use CPS is probably too inflexible.   Even for residential users, some BT network services are not available with CPS. With the 'all calls' option, NTS (0845/0870), mobile and premium calls will be handled by the indirect operator (unless the BT access code is dialled), in many cases at higher cost than with BT.  It's also worth noting that few indirect operators publish pricing details of such non-geographic calls, so the higher cost may come as a surprise.


Version 54 in mid December 2001 adds new operators Angel Network (residential), Post Office (Consignia, residential) and Telediscount (residential) and updates Alpha Telecom Rhubarb, BT, British Gas (Centrica), Callserve, Euphony, Just-Dial, Kingston Comms, Phonecard Services and Servista.

Atlantic Telecom has collapsed, but has not yet been removed from the comparison since parts are being sold off. The old Cable & Wireless Comms indirect business bought by NTL has now been sold on to Npower, but the old tariffs likewise remain for the moment. RSL COM has been taken over by Eurocall.  Thus has stopped offering residential telephone service. The State of the Industry page attempts to keep up with these continual changes and is updated weekly as required.   Many thanks to those end users and staff being made redundant from businesses, for keeping us informed about all these changes.

BT has added the Iridium satellite system (again) and BT Together UK Calls Option which gives the first hour of local and national non-internet off-peak calls free (Telewest provides peak calls free for about the same price).   Telediscount is effectively offering local call access to most of Europe, North America and Australia using two stage dialling via 0845 055 6363 (including weekends).   In the numbering tables, the Wellington area in Shropshire (01952) has been renamed Telford to reflect modern usage.

Permanent Carrier Pre-Selection is now available from BT (and Kingston Telecom), which means that smartboxes and indirect access codes are effectively obsolete because Other Licensed Operator can now arrange with BT for all local, national, international NTS, mobile, page and personal calls to be 'diverted' without needing to dial any extra codes (different types of call may be routed to different OLOs) . If CPS is set-up, indirect codes may still be dialled to use alternate operators or to use BT (code 1280).  CPS can be supplied on single or multiline PSTN or ISDN lines. In order for BT to set-up CPS, a document signed by the customer must be supplied to BT, so it should not be possible for salesmen to 'slam' customers without their knowledge, there is also a 14 day cooling off period. A CPS guide is available from Oftel.  A new Operator Carrier Preselection List has been added to the comparison, showing which operators and resellers are licensed to offer CPS.


Version 53 in late October 2001 adds new operators Callsave UK residential and Vartec business and updates BT, 21st-Century-Telecom, Broadsystem Ventures 1602 and PowerGen business and residential.   ABS Telecom has been renamed Inclarity PLC, ETI UK (Excel) closes on 31st October and has been removed, Free Chariot no longer offers telephony and has been removed (internet is now FRIACO). 

BT business rental has gone up, residential rental effectively down, making business lines now double the cost (for no significant extra service level).  BT Together rentals are reduced, significantly for Highway with call allowances reduced or removed.


Version 52 in late September 2001 adds new operators Npower, (residential) and Resource Utilities (business and residential), and updates BT, British Gas, Broadsystem Ventures Dial 1602, C2000, Kingston Comms, NTL residential, Planet Talk, Quip business and residential, and Swiftcall business and residential. Callmate has ceased it's retail division and has been removed.  The Primus Goldfish tariff has been removed. Unfortunately old details remain for several operators recently taken over, due to the lack of interest in the new owners in promoting their acquisitions.

BT has changed Cellnet and Vodafone prices, some up, some down, the recent Oftel announcement means Orange and One2One should be lowering prices real soon. Added a new premium call band at 5p/minute (hopefully to stop 0870/0871 being abused as premium).  BT is changing some residential rentals from 1st November by increasing the basic call allowance by about £10 a year, and decreasing BT Together rental by about £5 a year, this changes will be in the next update. It is also increasing the international call cost to Cambodia and East Timor to £2 per minute which are record call prices (excluding satellite).


Version 51 in late August 2001 adds new operators Cause Call,  Euphony business, First National Telecom, One.Tel business, and updates Citrus Telecom, GoTalk!, NTL, One.Tel, Quip, Savant Sage, Sky Talk, Telecom Plus, Telewest and Vartec.

Norweb Telecom is now called Your Communications. First National has taken over the Interoute GoTalk! service and raised the prices. The Telewest Talk Unlimited package that provides untimed local and national calls (including peak) for about £16 extra per month is now available to all customers (but the call connect charge has gone up to 5p making short calls up to double the price of BT).  NETnet (previously ACC and WorldxChange) is now Eurocall. No BT changes.


Version 50 in early July 2001 adds new operator Say Telecom (business and residential), and updates Connaught Communications, Equitalk, ETI, Euphony, M-Line, One.Tel, One2One, Planet Talk, Powergen, Swiftcall, Telesave and Vodafone. M-Line has taken over Unicall so the latter has been removed. Viatel is now Telco GC (again) with corporate branding Enable Communications. Callmate has suspended it's service, but may return when new credit card facilities are arranged so has not been removed. World Online (aka LocalTel or Tiscali) has been removed since the service is discontinued this month. No BT changes again.

A new State of the Industry page was added last month, which attempts to give an overview of recent changes, which operators are being taken over, which have ceased offering services and those in financial difficulty. It will be updated as changes are notified, not just when the tariffs are updated.


Version 49 in late May 2001 adds Callfox and updates Alpha Telecom, C2000 Ltd, Connaught Communications, ETI, Eurobell, Kingston Communications, NTL (ex C&WC), Phonecard Services, Planet Talk, Servista, Share-Dial, Telewest. Mobile tariffs have also been updated this month, for BT Cellnet, One2One, Orange, Virgin and Vodafone.

No BT changes this month in the comparison, although several new countries have been added to the list with higher charges to mobiles (but these prices are not yet in the comparison).  Whereas most operators regularly drop prices to remain competitive, ETI and Planet Talk have raised their prices, a few operators have increased call cost to Pakistan and India. Tiscali is transferring telephone customers (including those from LocalTel and World Online) to Servista, to concentrate on being an internet provider.  Telewest has introduced an innovative Talk Unlimited package which for £25 a month includes line rental and unlimited local and national geographic calls at all times, available in Scotland, North East and South West only at present.

A new numbering table has been added, showing how many lines each operator has allocated for each national code. Note that all allocations are in 10,000s, so the totals do not mean actual lines in use. Total lines in the UK are 147,027,100, with those operators with more than 100,000 being: British Telecom 106,017,100, Telewest 5,110,000, ntl Group 10,060,000, Cable & Wireless Comms 9,110,000, Atlantic Telecom 1,140,000, Eurobell 300,000, Kingston Communications 510,000, Thus 2,670,000, Atlas Communications 340,000, Guernsey Telecoms 150,000, Jersey Telecoms 490,000, Manx Telecom 200,000, COLT 530,000, Energis 2,220,000, Global Crossing (UK) 950,000, MCI Worldcom 640,000, Norweb 1,150,000, Redstone 650,000, Torch 1,650,000, Viatel 800,000, 186k 180,000, Rateflame 170,000, Starcomm 260,000, OnCue Telecommunications 130,000 and Telia 130,000.


Version 48 in late April 2001 adds Share-Dial, and updates Callmate, Euphony, Kingston Communications, MCI WorldCom, Phonecard Services, Telco GC, Telecom Plus and Viatel.  AXS Telecom is now called Liberty Surf and will become Tiscali.  LocalTel became World Online, and will also become Tiscali. Ecossel Telecom is now UKBell, WorldxChange and ACC are now NETnet. A number of operators have been removed this month: Long Distance International (gone), ScottishPower (service withdrawn), Telinco (taken over), TransNet (service withdrawn).   There's also a report Free Chariot has withdrawn it's service.

No BT changes this month.  Further reconciliations would appear imminent in this industry, with several USA owned carriers in financial difficulties.


Version 47 in mid March 2001 adds new business operators 21st-Century-Telecom and World Telecom, and residential operators Apple Telecom, British Gas Communications (Centrica), Interoute GoTalk!, Unitel CallSave and World Telecom, and updates BT, AXS Telecom, Kingston Communications and One.Tel. Access Telecom has been renamed Citrus Telecom, and SuperLine is now Jippii! SuperLine.

BT has reduced rates for calling Orange and One2One mobiles. and increased international directory enquiries (to £1.50/minute).  BT Premier Line and Country Calling Plans have been removed since they were discontinued last year.

Note that 28th April 2001 is when old mobile, service and premium numbers cease, including 0345, 0645 and 0990 (codes which are still being advertised). Only 0500 remains as a 'non-standard' code. 

All the numbering products and tables have been updated, despite Oftel changing the format of the premium numbers table on a weekly basis, anyone else that uses the Oftel data is advised to do so carefully!


Version 46 in mid February 2001 adds new business operators PowerGen, Redstone, Spacetel and residential operators ABS Telecom,   Easy-Dial, Spacetel, and updates Access Telecom Just Dial, Atlantic Telecom Ring:It, BT, C2000 Ltd, Cable & Wireless business, Callserve, Connaught Communications, EcosseTel, Eurobell Business, Just Dial, NTL residential, One-Tel, PowerGen, Scottish Power, Telco GC, Telecom Plus, Telewest, Vartec and Viatel. 

CallNet Call 145 and Nextcall have both ceased operating and have been removed.

All the numbering products and tables have been updated.


Version 45 in early January 2001 adds new business operators Quip, and updates BT, Kingston Communications, and adds new residential operators Equitalk, ETI UK (Excel), Scottish Power, and updates BT, Callserve,GKC, Kingston Communications, NextCall, One.Tel, Superline, Telecom Plus, Telewest, Vartec.

BT has gone wild this month and added 30 new charge bands for internet, multimedia and premium calls, effective from 1st February 2001.  At the time of publication, no telephone number ranges have been allocated for these 30 new bands, and I suspect many will never be used. BT Cellnet and Vodafone call charges have changed by fractions of a pence. 

From 1st January 2001, carrier preselection has been available from BT lines.  This means that national and international calls may be 'diverted' to an indirect operator without needing to dial a three or four digit access code.  An access code may still be used, for different indirect operators or for BT (when the indirect operator is overloaded). CPS should be extended to local calls in 2002. 

All the numbering products and tables have been updated.


Version 44 in early November 2000 adds new business operators M-Line, Solar Communications, Swiftnet, Telecommunications 2000 Ltd, Unicom, WorldxChange, and updates Atlantic Telecom, Cable & Wireless, Callmate, MCI Worldcom, NTL (indirect), Thus, and adds new residential operators Callserve (internet telephony), Swiftnet, Universal Communications, and updates BT, Alpha Telecom Communications, ASDA, Atlantic Telecom, C2000 Ltd, Callmate, Eurobell, Euphony, GKC, One.Tel, Swiftcall, Thus, Totalise Telecom.

Alpha Telecom post paid tariffs have been removed, Communications 2000 is now correctly named C2000 Ltd to avoid confusion with Communications 2000 Group PLC that trades as Telecommunications 2000 Ltd, First Telecom is now owned by Atlantic Telecom and has been renamed in the tables. WorldxChange (aka ACC or World Access) is probably now called NETnet but there is no link from the old web site to the new one so it's not been changed here yet either.

All the dialling code files, pages and spreadsheets are now created automatically from the Magenta UK Numbering Database, so the presentation has been improved in various ways, such as including a tariff band description against special service codes (ie premium £1.50 instead of P0).  A new International Mobile code table has been added, since many operators are now charging 10 to 25p more per minute to such destinations.

BT is making a lot of changes from 1st December 2000, that are included in this comparison. 

BT residential rental increases to £119.88 per year (including VAT), but inclusive call time also increases to £21.60, meaning an actual rental reduction per year of £3.18 (unless you don't use BT for any paid calls). Business Highway and ISDN2e 'low start' (ie no bundled calls) rental increases by £8 per year to £360 (excluding VAT).

There are five new tariff bands, g6 and g7 (0871 2) at 5 and 10p per minute at all times, and i1, i2 and i3 (0844 0912) internet bands at 5, 10 and 1p per minute at all times.

The BT Together residential bundled call allowance increases by £4.80 to £28.80 per year (including VAT). There are three new varieties of BT Together with the same call prices as the 'base' version (total £143.88 per year), with untimed elements. BT Talk Together is £30 per year (including VAT) more than 'base' (total £179.88), but gives the first one hour of non-internet local off-peak calls free. £30 is worth 50 hours of off-peak calls, or 10 minutes per day. There are severe exclusions to 'free' calls (see below) which basically means BT is attempting to build a list of geographic internet access numbers and charge them at normal local rates, much as Telewest does. But this would appear to be a major undertaking so some people may still get off-peak untimed internet access for £2.50 per month.

BT Surf Together is also £30 per year more than base (total £179.88), and includes free off-peak calls to Surftime numbers, so £2.50 per month against the current £5.99. BT Talk and Surf Together for £96 per year more than base (total £239.88), combines the previous two offerings. This combined price seems wrong (and is higher than the original press release), since £30 plus £30 should be £60 not £96. But BT has since reissued the press release for the 'wrong' figure.

On the business side, the free Business Advantage scheme which offered 16% discount (for low usage business lines) has been replaced by Business Advantage Plus only offering 10% but adding a call allowance of £5.06 (excluding VAT). No changes to Business Choices. But there is a new Corporate Business Advantage that seems to be the same as Business Advantage (16% discount).

Exclusions for 'free' local off peak calls (from BT price list):

Calls to identified Internet Service Providers using geographic numbers will be charged at the rates shown in Table 1b, if a national call. If the local call rate applies, these calls will be charged at 2.55p ex VAT (2.997p inc VAT) during the daytime and 0.85p ex VAT (1.00p inc VAT) at evenings & night-time and weekends. (Effective date 01.01.2001) A list of these numbers is available on bt.com.

The zero pence per minute Local rates available within the BT Talk Together option are intended for voice calls only and apply to the first hour of the call (after which time standard BT Together call charges apply). BT reserves the right to charge standard BT Together rates for the full duration of the call where the call has been made for the purpose of accessing the Internet.

BT reserves the right to withdraw the BT Talk Together option from a customer where use of this service, in BT's option, risks degradation of service levels to other customers and/or puts BT's network at risk.

BT reserves the right to withdraw the BT Talk Together option from a customer where this service is being used for purposes that, in BT's opinion, are not in keeping with those reasonably expected of a Residential customer. e.g. Telemarketing.


Version 43 in mid September 2000 adds Nevada Tele.Com (business Northern Ireland), Thus (residential) and RSL Com (residential), and updates BT, Callmate, Euphony, OneTel, RSL COM (business), Savant Sage, Smartcall, Telesave and World Online.

BT has reduced many BT Together international charges. Unfortunately, because BT's share of the international call market is reducing, it no longer has to give Oftel 30 days notice of such changes, so they were effective with one day's notice on 1st September. This comparison has always been published before new BT prices became effective, but this will now become much more difficult.


Version 42 in mid August 2000 adds Discount Telecom, Freechariot, GKC Communications and Just-Dial, and updates BT (mobile), Callmate, Dial 1602, EcosseTel, Kingston Communications, Quip, Sky, Smartcall and Swiftcall.

BT has now followed the industry trend by charging a premium cost for calls to international mobiles (but without reducing any other charges). The tariff comparison is not currently covering international mobile costs, but they will be added within a few weeks when the site is generated from a database. The Quip/Line One Internet tariff has been discontinued. Alpha Telecom went into receivership and was bought by a new owner, but the tariffs remain temporarily. CallNet no longer offer free internet access.

Good progress has been made toward the new site design, with the dialling code database completed. This will be used for a windows application (free to paid site members) for code and cost lookups, and also for new call logging and CLI lookup applications.


Version 41 in late June 2000 adds London Digital, PowerGen, Quip/LineOne, Servista.com, SuperLINE and Virgin Mobile, and updates Alpha Telecom, AXS Telecom, BT Cellnet, Eurobell, First Telecom, Interglobe, One2One, Orange, SwiftCall, Telesave, TransNet and Vodafone.

No BT changes this month. Lots of operators have been getting new 0844, 0808 and 0871 codes allocated ready to offer Surftime and FRIACO internet services. Currently the format of this comparison limits the ability to show fixed price services (apart from comments in the Operator Notes), but this will all be changing over the next few weeks as a new site design is introduced.


Version 40 in mid May 2000 adds Access Telecom, Alpha Home Connect, ASDA Calltime and NTL BusinessLine, and updates BT, Callmate, EcosseTel, Eurobell business and residential, Kingston Comms, One.Tel, Planet Talk, Vartec and World Online (previously called LocalTel).

Two new BT charge bands have been added for internet services, G4 (Pay As You Go) and G5 (Surftime). Services using these chargebands have yet to be officially launched, but there will almost certainly be an ISP subscription required on top of the timed or untimed cost.


Version 39 at the beginning of April 2000 adds Alpha Telecom business, BT Together for Business and BT Working Together, and updates Alpha Telecom residential, Atlantic Telecom, BT, Communications 2000, Connaught Communications, Dial 1602, Euphony, Eurobell, Kingston Comms, MCI WorldCom, Quip, Sky, Telco GC, Telecom Plus, Viatel and WorldxChange.

BT is changing it's discount schemes by obsoleting some and creating new ones. Premiere Line, Country Calling Plans and Daytime Caller are being obsoleted and are not available for new supply from 1st April 2000, but existing customers can continue to use the schemes. BT Together for Business and BT Working Together have lower basic call costs but bundled allowances.

It is also worth noting that an increasing number of operators are surcharging 15 to 25p per minute for mobile networks outside the UK. How you are suppose to know the number is a mobile network is never explained.


Version 38 in late February 2000 adds Callmate Business, Phonecard Services, Primus Goldfish, Quip and Totalise Telecom, and updates Atlantic Telecom, AXS, BT, Callmate, COLT (now business only), Euphony, Eurobell, Kingston Comms, One.Tel, Telecom Plus, Vartec, Viatel (previously called Telco GC).

Separate tariffs for Cable London have been removed since they are now standardised with Telewest. ACC has been taken over by WorldxChange (which was then taken over by World Access) but tariffs have not yet been rationalised.

Magenta Systems has also introduced ComCap, a free application designed to capture any ASCII data received on a PC serial communications port to a text file. ComCap is primarily designed to capture telephone call logging data from the serial port provided on most telephone switching systems (PABXs). The saved data may then be used as input to telephone call management applications that will cost calls and produce reports on telephone usage.


Version 37 in mid January 2000 adds Planet Talk and Savant Sage Telecom and updates BT, Cable & Wireless Comms, Cable London, Connaught, First Telecom, Interoute, Swiftcall, Telecom Plus, Telco GC and Telewest.

Separate tariffs for Birmingham Cable and General Cable (Cable Corp and Yorkshire Cable) have been removed since they are now standardised with Telewest. Telewest prices are now almost the same as NTL, as presumably will be Cable & Wireless Comms when NTL takes it over, which seems to suggest some common cable marketing forthcoming.

No major changes over the past six weeks, although BT has reduced One2One/Virgin weekend calls by almost half, and Cable & Wireless Comms has reduced GlobalCall Plus international tariffs dramatically (5p to most major countries including Japan).


Version 36 in late November 1999 adds CallNet Call 145, Sky Talk and WorldxChange Communications, and updates BT (mobile has increased), Alpha Telecom, Cable & Wireless Comms, Dial 1602, First Telecom business, LocalTel, Norweb, Prestophone, Sky Dial, Telecom Plus, Telinco and Torch.

Dial 1602 has been removed from the Business comparison at the request of Broadsystem, but it's four residential tariffs are now up to date.

In addition, a major change has been made to the comparison of international tariffs. Until now, the comparison has only covered the 19 different IDD chargebands defined by BT. An increasing number of operators have differential tariffs within the same BT band, such as to the USA and Canada. Even BT now has specific country tariffs for BT Together.

There is a long term plan to cover all 200 countries individually in the comparison, but that will stretch the current spreadsheet and web pages too much. Instead 17 new specific countries have been added, so the comparison now covers all the major international traffic routes, in addition the original IDD chargebands. In many cases the new countries are charged at higher prices (some more than double) than the single country shown before, so this comparison will now be rather more useful.

Operators with specific country tariffs that means extra information has been added to this version of the comparison are BT Together, ACC Residential, ACN, Alpha Telecom, AXS Telecom, Cable & Wireless Comms, CallMate, Communications 2000, Connaught Communications, Euphony Comms, Eurobell, First Telecom, Interglobe, Norweb, One.Tel, Telco GC, Presophone, Swiftcall, Telecom Plus, Telinco, Torch, TransNet, World Direct, WorldxChange Communications.

Please note that some operators have three different tariffs to the same country, with a cheaper rate for some cities and more expensive for mobiles. This comparison always shows the most general cost but adds in the notes if lower city pricing is available.


Version 35 in late October 1999 adds TransNet (previously LocalNet) and Vartec, and updates ACC residential, Alpha Telecom, AXS Telecom, Energis, Euphony, Eurobell residential, Kingston Comms, LocalTel, NTL residential, Telco GC and Telewest. BT is unchanged.

AT&T has been removed due to age, Cambridge Cable residential and Comtel because they are now NTL.

A new mobile table has been added comparing packages and tariffs from BT Cellnet, Dolphin, One2One, Orange and Vodafone. Please note this is a prelimiary version that will be expanded over the coming months.

Indirect access codes have been added (where known) to the tables, to help distinguish operators reselling other people's capacity.


Version 34 in early September 1999 adds NextCall (business) and Norweb and updates AXS Telecom, Birmingham Cable, BT, Connaught, Euphony, General Cable (Cable Corp, Yorkshire Cable), NextCall, One.Tel, Swiftcall and Telco GC.

BT has been messing heavily with tariffs, increasing line rentals and introducing bundled residential calls (which balance out the rental increase, unless you use an indirect operator). There are new paging and premium bands. Off-peak long distance call cost is reduced, with the regional and national bands now identically priced. No reductions for business or internet users.

BT has introduced (from November) a new residential scheme called BT Together, which for the first time introduces specifically priced tariffs, rather than a discount from 'basic' with the prices being mostly cheaper than any current BT discount scheme, most cable company calls and many indirect operators. BT has also made a nightmare come true for the compiler of these tables, by pricing countries individually, so the country comparisons become even less useful than before. Plans are in hand to list over 200 countries separately, which involves a major redesign of the tables and web site.

The tables now have two extra rows in the totals section, showing the value of bundled calls, and calculating the annual cost with customer options but less calls.


Version 33 in late July 1999 adds ACN and World Direct and updates Atlantic Telecom, Cable & Wireless, Connaught, Eurobell, Kingston Comms, One.Tel, Swiftcall, Telecom Plus, Telewest and Telinco.

There have been no BT changes and only a few code changes, the summer is quiet.


Version 32 in mid June 1999 adds Alpha Telecom and updates BT, Cable & Wireless, Callmate, Connaught, EcosseTel, First Telecom, Interglobe, Kingston Comms, One.Tel, SmartCall, Telewest and Telco GC.

BT has introduced further a business discount scheme for some international destinations that offers around 50% reduction over basic, and is very competitive against most other operators.


Version 31 in early May 1999 adds Communications 2000 and Interglobe, and updates BT, EcosseTel, Euphony, LocalTel, Kingston Comms and Telco GC.

From 1st June, BT is reducing the cost of calling pagers, unfortunately by creating yet further tariffs bands and further increasing the size of the comparison tables.


Version 30 in mid April 1999 adds Localtel and updates BT, Callmate, One.Tel, Telewest and WorldCom. First Choice has been removed.

BT has moved Hong Kong and Malaysia into new tariff bands, thus reducing call cost. From 30th April, BT reduces mobile call costs with different rates to each of the four main operators. The most expensive becomes One2One, then Orange, Vodafone and the cheapest is Cellnet (the opposite of two years ago). The Code Change tables have also been improved with more codes and dates for old codes ceasing.

Migration of all data into the database is progressing, slowly. The next update will be at the end of April or early May, when other operators have reacted to BT's reduced mobile rates.


Version 29 in March 1999 adds The Cable Corporation, Connaught Telecommunications, NextCall, Telia and The Telephone Network, and updates tariffs from Atlantic Telecom, AXS Telecom, Euphony, First Telecom and Telinco.

The International Codes tables has been rewritten, and now uses ISO approved country names (and ISO codes), includes ISDN charge bands, some new countries, and all the North American area codes so that calls to the USA and Canada can be separated for different charging.

All the dialling code data has now been migrated to a database, and will shortly be made available to Tariff Comparison Members as a Windows application providing name and code look-up, including localities down to the last three or four number digits and accurate inland charging bands between localities. Subsequently, all the tariff information will be similarly migrated to a database allowing greater flexibility for web page creation and comparisons between operators.


Version 28 in February 1999 adds First Choice Telephone and Long Distance International, and updates tariffs from Cable & Wireless, ACC, Telcom Global Comms, First Telecom, Euphony, NTL Cabletel and One.Tel. Ionica and Textnet have been removed.

A few more service and indirect access codes have been added, but it's been relatively quiet.


Version 27 in late December 1998 adds new tariffs from Kingston Communications (Hull), One.Tel, Euphony, AXS Telecom, SmartCall, Torch, Primus and Callmate and updates tariffs from BT, Cable & Wireless Comms, Telecom Plus, EcosseTel, Cable London. More discounted tariffs have been added to ease comparisons.

More service and indirect codes have been added. To ease updating and avoid duplication, the indirect and direct tables have been combined. Tariff codes have been added to allow calculation of discounts. The four mobile networks are now identified separately since calls to them may differ. While they may be easily printed, comparisons between tariffs are now hard to see due to the vast number of operators now covered in the comparison. All the tariffs are currently being migrated from the master spreadsheet into a database, which will then be used to create much more manageable web pages and allow comparisons between specific tariffs.

The HTML versions of the tariff tables have also been re-arranged to reduce the width and make printing the pages more realistic (landscape). So there are now nine separate tables instead of four before.


Version 26 at the beginning of December 1998 adds new tariffs from LocalNet and Scottish Telecom, and updates tariffs from Cambridge Cable, COLT, First Telecom and EcosseTel. More service and indirect codes have been added, and the service table rationalised so the code format is now in familiar three or four digit groupings.

BT residential rental rose in November, but are not yet included here yet, but will be changed later this month when BT reduces the Option 15 discounts (ie increases the cost) for mobile and premium rate calls and band E comes back again.


Version 25 in early October 1998 adds new tariffs from Eurobell (Sussex), Telinco and Interoute. Tariffs have been updated for Cable & Wireless Comms, Telewest, Cable London, Cambridge Cable, ACC and CableTel. A new premium band g2 has been added for internet services such as BT Click. The Code Changes table has been updated with more dates. More service and indirect codes have been added.

BT residential rental rises in November, but is not yet included here.


Version 24 in late July 1998 does not include any major tariff changes. Calls to Cellnet and Vodaphone mobiles now cost the same as Orange and One2One, with the relevant services codes changed from rate k to f in the Service Codes table. Tariff changes include: band e has gone, premium band 8 (75p/min) has been added, and Swiftcall Residential prices have been updated. BT business line rental has gone up. The Code Changes table has again been updated.

Please note that most operators have country specific tariffs while BT still bands countries together. Until this Tariff Comparison is updated to show rates to specific countries, there will be a large number of anomolies in these tables. For instance BT now bands Japan and Turkey together, while the prices are widely different from most other operators.


The main changes with Version 23 in early July 1998 are new tariffs from Telecom Plus (currently the best value in the comparison), Cambridge Cable and RSL Communications. In addition, tariffs for Cable & Wireless, Ionica, First Telecom, ACC, Dial 1602, Sky 1602 and WorldCom have been updated (many are totally new).

Note there have been no BT changes since April, however BT has announced that from August the cost of calling Cellnet and Vodaphone mobiles will drop to the same as calls to Orange and One2One, presumably by moving the relevant services codes from rate k to f.

Numerous extra service codes have been added, start dates added to the Code Changes table, and various Caribbean country codes changed.


The main changes with Version 22 in late April 1998 are new tariffs from General Telecom, ComTel and EcosseTel. In addition, tariffs for BT, COLT, Telewest, ACC, First Telecom and Telco have been updated. More service codes have been added and minor changes made to the Code Changes table.

Due to the difficulty of printing the spreadsheets (which were now too wide for landscape A4), the tables have now been split into separate Direct and Indirect tariffs. BT appears in both tables since a BT line is necessary to use Indirect tariffs, and some others appear twice where they offer both services.


With Version 21 in mid March 1998,  a new Code Changes table has been added, making a first attempt to list the new codes for 10 million (or more) phone numbers that will be changing in the next two years. These include London, Northern Ireland, various other cities, and all mobile, paging and premium numbers. The new table does not yet include premium numbers, and has quite a few question marks. Any assistance in filling in details would be much appreciated.

BT has increased Business Advantage and Option 15 discounts from 10 to 11% and further complicated any attempt to compare prices with Key Cities and Key Regions discount schemes for an extra 15%. Updated tariffs for C&WC, Dial 1602 and Energis, and added a yet more Service Codes. WorldCom was contracted several times and finally declined to supply new tariffs, but has promised its next major revision next month.


The main change in version 20 in mid January 1998  is the addition of BT's Key Country schemes that increase business discounts for a fee per country. There were no other BT tariff changes except a correction to national services prices that should have been the same as national calls. Also updated tariffs for ACC and Birmingham Cable, and added a few more Service Codes.


The main change in version 19 in late December 1997  are the addition of BT's Country Calling Plans that substantially increase discounts to specific countries, and the addition of a new National Codes table. Also updated tariffs for Telewest Business, First Telecom. Cable London, Dial 1602, Telco and TExNET Telecom. The Service Code and Access Code tables have also been updated.  

Note that BT has moved Japan from IDD 11 to IDD 3, however the tariffs for other providers will still be IDD 11. Many providers have separate tariffs for each country rather than using BT IDD bands, and ideally these comparisons need to done country by country - a change planned for the near future.

In the ZIP files, there are now separate spreadsheets for tariffs and dialling codes, since they are not necessarily updated at the same time.


The main change in interim version 19 in mid October 1997  are changes to the Service Code and Access Code tables.   There may be some tariff changes shortly, but things are currently very quiet. Note that only the Excel spreadsheet contains interim version 19.


The main change in version 18 in late September 1997 is the addition of Cable London business, and minor changes for BT, C&WC, ACC, First Telecom, Energis, Ionica and Telco. A few more service codes have been added. Note that BT is reducing the Friends & Family discount for mobile calls when used with PremierLine and Option 15.


The main change in version 17 in mid August 1997 is the addition of six new tariffs from Cable & Wireless Communications and the removal of the Mercury, Nynex and Videotron tariffs which they replace. Other changes include lower tariffs from BT, Telewest, Telco, First Telecom, Dial 1602, Energis, Cable London and AT&T.

Tariffs which are now probably wildly out of date due to lack of current information include WorldCom, Birmingham CablePhone, COLT, CableTel and Atlantic Telecom.

Oftel has been busy issuing new service codes, so there are numerous changes in that table. A synopsis of the code changes planned for London, mobile, premium and special services will appear on this site real soon.

Finally, the spreadsheets now included separate tables for residential non-VAT and with-VAT prices. This was primarily done to allow entry of VAT inclusive prices in the spreadsheet with the non-VAT price then calculated automatically. The web site pages only show VAT inclusive price so you'll need to download and print a spreadsheet to see the VAT exclusive prices. .


Main changes in version 16 in early June 1997 are the addition of First Telecom and Swiftcall, lower national tariffs from BT, ACC, Energis, and Ionica, and a new residential tariff from ACC.

It may be noted that the day after reducing the standard national call rate, BT announced increased line rentals from July that will claw back the saving.


Main changes in version 15 in mid May 1997 are the addition of Atlantic Telecom (Scotland), and price reductions from TExNET and Colt.

A new row has been added for 'Local - same operator' calls where a different tariff (often free) is provided for calls between cable customers.

Also, the Country Code, Service Code and Access Code tables have been fully updated.


Main changes in version 14 in mid April 1997 are price reductions from Mercury, Energis, Nynex and Ionica. Ionica and Nynex Business now have calculated discount tariffs.

The rows in the spreadsheet have been re-arranged, so inland and overseas tariffs are together, similarly to the web version.


Main change in version 13 in early April 1997 was price reductions from Dial 1602.


Main changes in version 12 in mid March 1997 are price reductions from Mercury, Telewest, Nynex, Videotron, ACC and AT&T. Note that not all the different tariffs have been updated due to lack of up to date information.

The main tariff tables in the spreadsheet have been reformatted to print landscape on two sheets of A4, or a single A3 sheet. The web versions have been split into inland and overseas tables, to make them smaller.


Main changes in version 11 in February 1997 are lower BT international prices and higher PCN prices. Note that many of the international changes involved moving countries into different charge bands. Likewise PCN calls have been moved to a different tariff band, as have some premium numbers. So there were major updates to the Service and International Code tables. A new Access Codes table has been added showing the indirect code dialled to access other operators.


Main changes in version 10 in late December 1996 are the addition of Telco Global Communications indirect (lowest USA prices on offer), CableTel (UK), and ACCess Direct tariffs. Some Ionica international prices have been added.


Main changes in version 9 in early December 1996 are lower Mercury UKLink and GlobalLink tariffs, and changes for AT&T 143.


Main changes in version 8 in early November 1996 are the addition of Cable London residential tariffs, and reductions for some Telewest business and Dial 1602 residential tariffs. In addition, a new International Telephone Codes table has been added, showing charge band and international dialling codes for all the countries of the world.


Main changes in version 7 in late October 1996 are the addition of COLT indirect tariffs, Nynex business tariffs, and reductions for some Nynex residential tariffs.


Main changes in version 6 in mid October 1996 are further long distance and international tariff reductions from Mercury, ACC, Energis and Ionica. Dial 1602 Business tariffs have been added (residential prices will be updated shortly). Birmingham CablePhone Residential prices have been added. The Mercury 2300 Standard tariff has been re-instated in the tables, since many early users are still using it (and it is now cheaper than Smartcall). The Energis Direct Access tariff has been added.


Main changes in version 5 in early October 1996 are various BT national and international tariff reductions and premium call increases and new bands. Some other figures have been corrected. Other operators may be expected to react to the BT reductions, but such changes are not available for the tables. Additional special services codes have been included.


Main changes in version 4 in August 1996 are new BT international weekend prices, the addition of AT&T 143, new prices from Mercury and WorldCom, and extra discounts from Telewest. All BT residential discounts are now shown separately. In addition, a new worksheet has been added with all the special tariff codes. The main worksheets how includes all fixed fee and rarer mobile tariffs that were previously missing.


Main changes in version 3 in July 1996 are tariff reductions or increased discount levels for most carriers, and the introduction of Videotron, Ionica and TExNET. United Artists has been renamed Telewest.


The tables now use magenta coloured text to show calculated discounted tariffs, and coloured columns for different operators to make identification easier once the headings have scrolled off the screen. The HTML version now uses font tags to make it easier to read, converted with a new Excel macro that produces smaller files with better formatting than the MS Excel Internet Assistant.