Re: If BT can lower their prices........
Australia is in the process of this single nationalized network folly with their NBN.
One result is that a private company TPG, who were rolling out fibre infrastructure, were prevented from expanding their reach because the NBN' "equal for all" aspirations may be "threatened" by TPG's "cherry picking" of "areas of high return".
NBN was a political solution based on "high speed connections for all" but it's not turning out that way and is horrendously over budget and behind time (and over regulated). Many communities who were expecting fibre connections are ending up with under performing fixed wireless and satellite connections.
NBN legislation dictates that ADSL has to be switched off once NBN is in an area - and as NBN is only a wholesaler the retailers then have to sell new NBN connections at, surprisingly, higher cost than your old ADSl. While the connection speed may be higher the actual thru put is in many cases lower because of the complicated deals and contention issues at peak times. There is no point in having a 100Mbit connection to a network if the network can only serve you dribs and drabs while it also serves your neighbors (just like VirginMedia??).
I don't know what business model would deliver fair affordable high speed services for all but having another nationalized industry may not be the way to go - and anyway once all our tax pounds were sunk in it the government would no doubt sell it and we would be back to where were are.
It seems however that a modified quote, attributed to Churchill, " “Democracy is the worst form of government, except for all the others.” applies along the lines of " A nationalized backbone solution is the worst method for delivering equal Internet access for all, except for all the others.”