This isn't the best of articles, but...
This isn't the best of articles, but it's not all that clear in the press release either.
It's not mentioned at all in the article, but aiui the "reduce prices by 12% a year, less inflation" only applies to a subset of BT's wholesale services. As far as I can tell it's applicable only to BT Wholesale's legacy IPstream services and variants thereof, which are the old as the hills, up to 8Mbit, ones using DSL technology that has been around for ten years or so (probably using exchange kit which in broadband terms is long obsolete, and which has probably been financially written off several years ago).
BT Wholesale's current preferred wholesale services, which offer ADSL2+ at nominally up to 20+ Mbit, or VDSL, or in a few places actual fibre, are based on newer kit and are not covered by this ruling.
So this ruling is imo more likely to motivate BT Wholesale to upgrade existing but obsolescent kit in already-served exchanges to provide faster services to those who can already get 8Mb or so. It will not motivate BT Wholesale to provide better service to poorly served areas. Nor will it motivate other ISPs with their own infrastructure (the 'LLU' ISPs) to start to serve areas they're not already serving.
As far as I know there is only one ISP who has taken the opportunity to pass on BTwholesale's geographic discount to end users on the relevant exchanges. That ISP? BT Sheffield, formerly Plusnet.
"The impact on BT wholesale will be non-material"
Kelly, you seem to be struggling with the concept that BT is supposed to be split into a number of separate groups, with chinese walls between them. One of those groups is BT Wholesale, capital W (or maybe BTwholesale, no space), who are supposed to provide customer-independent wholesale services to any ISP who wants to use them, with BT Retail (capital R) as just one customer of many. OK everybody knows that in reality BT Wholesale do what BT Retail want (BT Retail are, after all, BTw's biggest customer), but it would be nice to at least acknowledge the theory.
@AndueC: "It just has to look like they are doing something."
That's about the size of it.