back to article Vodafone bins line rental charges as it moves onto TalkTalk's turf

Vodafone has scrapped line rental charges as it tries to muscle into TalkTalk's lower-end market – and comply with imminent regulatory changes for an all-in-one price for broadband and phone services. Under the move, rental charges will no longer apply for new and upgrading fibre optic home broadband customers, which means …

  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    and don't forget the interest on the principle Mr TaxMan

    hast Vodafone payeth the sixt billion pounds it doth oweth to HMRC?

  2. Simon Rockman

    Not the first though..

    For people living on the Isle of Wight, there has been a proper, fast fibre service withough having line rental for a while:

    1. annodomini2

      Re: Not the first though..

      Also Virgin have been offering pure BB with no phone line for quite some time.

      1. FrogsAndChips Silver badge

        Re: Virgin, no phone line

        Last time I subscribed with them, about 1 year ago, it was still cheaper to take a line rental and not use it, than to take their "no line" package (BB only, no TV, 12 months). Even cheaper if you paid 12 months of line rental upfront.

        Hopefully Vodafone's move will put an end to these stupid pricings. About time.

        1. Danny 14 Silver badge

          Re: Virgin, no phone line

          My virgin bb is an old 'no line rental' package. It is £25 for 60mb. I also pay 8 for a 2gb data 2000 min sim card added onto it.

          Virgin took over our old fibre provider and kept the contracts rolling (was originally 20mb line back in the day, then 50 now 60 soon to be 80 i think)

    2. David 164

      Re: Not the first though..

      Subsidise by the EU.

      Virgin still do it, you just get pressurise by there sale team to get add tv and phone line, which comes with line rental.

      Only after you get through all the sales crap can you finally get to just give you plane and simple BB.

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    And the race continues

    Talk Talk well in the lead but Vodafone trying to do their best to catch up, Its an exciting race for sure and we look forward to the next installment of Shittest Broadband provider in weeks coming.

    1. Danny 14 Silver badge

      Re: And the race continues

      Vodaphone do have a backbone though. A couple of local providers in cumbria buy data from them. They seem to be ok for the business side. No idea on domestic though.

      1. choleric

        Re: And the race continues

        The same could be said of TalkTalk. Even Andrews & Arnold use the TalkTalk backbone for some of their products.

        It's a shame the retail products are so poor.

    2. ad47uk

      Re: And the race continues

      How do you mean Talk Talk is in the lead? If you mean by the number of users then yes, but then they have been around a long time, still useless but been around a long time. vodafone have not that long started doing home broadband.

      Talk Talk is not cheap, £35 a month, that is for fibre up to 38Mb/s or to the proper term, fibre to the cabinet, and line rental, Vodafone was cheaper even before they changed the prices.

      I have no idea what Vodafone broadband is like, but if it was a choice between Talk Talk and vodafone then I would take vodafone.

      The problem these days are the stupid 18 months contract, far too long and also the connection fees, while Talk Talk do not do that for existing fibre users, other providers do.

      With Plusnet at the moment, and i am now out of contract as from yesterday so I can move when ever I want, but staying put until I see something that suits me, so far nothing does, even the service i am on now is really what I want.

  4. annodomini2

    About 10 years too late...

    See above

  5. buserror

    Now, what about BT?

    This is really a racket on the BT side; they keep telling you how WONDERFUL the FREE features you get with your landline package are, knowing perfectly well nobody use them. There isn't even a phone plugged in the socket anymore at my place, hadn't had one for years.

    This is literally a racket, and they know it perfectly well.

    1. Anonymous Coward

      Re: Now, what about BT?

      It's already in hand (there is even a clue in the article)

      It makes no difference, you'll still pay for it, it'll just be a different name / pricing structure.

      Bit like gyms that have no joining fee but charge a £50 admin fee.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Only Virgin for me

    on cheapest VM package (true fibre) - 50Mb/s

    No one else can get within 10% of that (after a very long call with BT, they confirmed I would be lucky with 3 Mb/s from them).

    In general your BB supplier is a function of geography - much like your water supplier. Not sure how national reporting helps ?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Only Virgin for me

      I agree, I can get 70mb with BT or 2mb with Virgin (at twice the price)

  7. joewilliamsebs

    No story - it just gets bundled in elsewhere in the charging structure.

    Vodafone will still be paying Openreach £9.50 or whatever the wholesale line price is. It's not suddenly becoming free.

    1. paulf Silver badge

      Abolished or just a combined price

      Exactly. All they've done is combine the line rental aspect with the rest of the charges into a single monthly price, and they'll be obliged to this soon anyway. Also they haven't suddenly decided to provide Naked DSL.

      Come on El Reg - even Auntie Beeb was brazen enough to call them on this rather than regurgitate the Voda press release verbatim: "However, some experts said the charge is being merged, rather than abolished. "To be clear, Vodafone isn't really abolishing line rental charges, it's simply combining the charge into its fibre pricing," said broadband expert Ewan Taylor-Gibson from uSwitch."

  8. Cynical Shopper

    Vodafone should get a pat on the back?

    Because they did it just before they were forced to?

  9. djstardust

    BBC Quote

    "The move means customers will not be billed the current £18 ($23) monthly charge but only if they commit to an 18-month contract."

    I know the BBC are blatantly behind Hilary Clinton but why quote the price in dollars for a UK product?

    Maybe the BBC will bugger off to their favourite country after Brexit .......

    1. David 164

      Re: BBC Quote

      Because substantial number of Americans use the site and their ad supported version must be making some money.

    2. ad47uk

      Re: BBC Quote

      "Maybe the BBC will bugger off to their favourite country after Brexit ......."

      Hope so, then get rid of the out dated TV licence.

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Vodafone TV Services

    They will probably offer it. I may or may not have seen one of their streaming boxes in action / crashing / generally not working.

    It may or may not be utter garbage. It may or may not be a generic lower end box of tat.

    The network capabilities and reliability may or may not be shit.

    Obscure because. Corporate bullshit.

  11. lukewarmdog


    "Ewan is the newest addition to the uSwitch team, and is a whiz-kid analyst able to demystify the communications market with his encyclopedic knowledge of tariffs, price plans and all the latest handsets."

    How does he qualify as a broadband expert? He has some price plans on his computer that he can easily compare.

    “Compared to other fibre deals on the market, Unlimited Fibre Broadband 38 is competitive,"

    And this is the summary of an expert in the field of broadband? A sentence that says pretty much nothing but takes up a whole line of an article.

    And Vodafone, a pat on the back, really? Pointy sticks in orifices would be more appropriate.

    Aiming to be slightly better than Talk Talk is a really low bar.

  12. mike white 1

    But TalkTalk uses Vodafone

    as a provider for their mobile service based on the rror pages I get trying to access pr0n sites ;)

    So if they take customers away from TalkTalk other than a direct higher customer count what do they actually gain?

    Confused ???

  13. ad47uk

    So not really binned then

    If the price is all in one then the line rental which is total rip off as it keeps going up in price and we get less, then it it is not really getting binned, anyone who gets fooled with that deserves all they get.

    I have looked at Vodafone but they offer nothing more than what I am getting Plusnet and they are more expensive. As for not having TV content or the lack of it, it is not that important, plusnet offers TV, i do not want it or need it, all I want is an internet connection at a decent price and get rid of the rip off line rental.

    1. King Jack

      Re: So not really binned then

      The Plusnet 76Mb costs £36.98 per month inc line rental. £37.98 after sept 1.

      The Vodaphone 76Mb costs £28 per month inc line rental (there is no line rental).

      Looks like they really have binned line rental unless they overcharge on modem delivery and 'activation'. Site says its £49 one off.

      1. ad47uk

        Re: So not really binned then

        I meant Plusnet was more expensive now, I can only get up to 38 anyway.

        Binned the line rental? not really, they may have reduced it a bit and stuck it under a all in one price, but it is still there and that will not change until Bloated Toad closed reach (BTOR) reduce their line rental prices for broadband only.

        The £49 payment would reduce the savings a fair bit, what they do not make clear is if that £49 is also for consumers who are already on fibre.

        Their router is a big problem for me, I prefer to use my own, but Vodafone will not give any usename and password details to do that.

  14. RegGuy1

    Vodafone bins line rental charges

    Hey, you mean it's getting £15 - £20 cheaper per month.


    What? It's not? WTF?

  15. Peter Gathercole Silver badge

    Line rental

    I've never understood why there is such a huge complaint about paying line rental.

    The cost of the copper/fibre infrastructure, and the ISP end equipment has to be paid for somehow, whether it be by a broken out line rental, or by having it wrapped into the monthly package.

    The cost of the voice component of the phone line is minimal in this day and age, and probably most data only lines still have the hardware to do analogue calls anyway. Just think, I can buy outright a whole mobile phone, with radios, batteries, displays and everything for £10. How much does the A-D and D-A converters cost at the exchange? And the amount of digital information generated by an analogue voice call is trivial.

    This means that it is extremely unlikely that a data only line with the infrastructure costs wrapped into the costs will work out any cheaper.

    I'm all for making the eventual costs more transparent, however.

    1. ENS

      Re: Line rental

      ""I've never understood why there is such a huge complaint about paying line rental:""

      The issue is both the size of the charge, and the fact that you have to pay £17.99 in the small-print after you have been told that you are getting a FREE introductory offer. Instead you are paying a fee designed to move BT profits to OpenReach (ubiquitous charge for DSL consumers) from Retail (significant market share but not ubiquitous).

      . The cost of the copper infrastructure has been paid for a long time ago.

      . The cost of the voice component of the phone line has been paid for a long time ago.

      All that remains is the cost of the FTTC (which you are paying the Broadband Fee for) and OpEx.

  16. This post has been deleted by its author

  17. krisleeds

    I had 200MB Virgin fibre (and GOT 200MB) - but it was the best part of £40 a month.

    Not have 40MB SKY Fibre AND SKY-Q Multi-Room for £39 a month.

    Exactly how fast do people need Facebook to refresh??

POST COMMENT House rules

Not a member of The Register? Create a new account here.

  • Enter your comment

  • Add an icon

Anonymous cowards cannot choose their icon

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2020