TalkTalk Business Leased Line Facts

hSo is able to provide your office with Internet connectivity using TalkTalk Business leased line circuits.

We're a carrier-independent ISP, and TalkTalk Business is one of our suppliers. We're also able to provide services using the networks of BT (Openreach and BT Wholesale), Virgin Media, Colt, Vodafone, KCOM as well - cherry-picking the best options available at each location.

A Brief History of TalkTalk's Business

TalkTalk was spun-off from mobile phone retailer Carphone Warehouse, which had built up a customer base by merging AOL, Tiscali's UK subsidary (which included Pipex and Video Networks t/a Homechoice) and Opal Telecom.

Many years ago, BT had appeared to be reluctant to roll out ADSL widely and to allow rival firms to install their own ADSL equipment in BT's telephone exchange buildings. However, seeing the regulatory writing on the wall, BT agreed to allow rivals - known as Local Loop Unbundlers - to install their equipment in rented space within its exchanges. Among those renting space from BT were AOL, Tiscali UK and Video Networks, which traded as HomeChoice.

There are just under 5600 BT exchanges across the UK, so installing equipment in all of them was going to be prohibitively expensive to everyone except BT. TalkTalk - which has always been great at strategy and positioning - saw an opportunity to buy market share and create decent economies of scale by merging together several LLU providers.

TalkTalk decided to go for a 'value' position, relative to the existing market leader BT. TalkTalk's consumer division (the main bit) offered cheap broadband/line rental/telephony bundles, while the TalkTalk business division sought to monetise the LLU infrastructure by offering wholesale services to ISPs (such as ourselves) that undercut those offered by BT Wholesale, the dominant wholesale ADSL provider.

At that time, most broadband in the UK was delivered using ADSL - Asymmetric digital subscriber line. There's a symmetric alternative known as SDSL, and a bonded version that's its successor - known as Ethernet in the First Mile over copper (EFM for short).

TalkTalk decided to deployed Ethernet First Mile far more widely than had BT Wholesale. BT offered EFM at around 800 exchanges. TalkTalk offered it at more than double that number. This meant that low-bandwidth leased lines (typically offering around 10Mbps) could be provided over copper wiring comparatively cheaply, if you were served by a telephone exchange into which TalkTalk had installed their equipment, and you didn't live too far away from your local exchange. Since then, the number of EFM exchanges has grown, for TalkTalk to around 3000, and for BT to around 1800.

The residential division continued to grow its customer base, raising its profile by sponsoring popular TV shows Big Brother and The X Factor. For customers served by some telephone exchanges, it would resell BT ADSL services. At other exchanges, where it had enough customers (or AOL/Tiscali/HomeChoice had installed equipment already) it would unbundle the local exchange, installing its own DSL equipment, rather than use BT's. The growing residential customer base underwrote the expansion of the network underpinning TalkTalk Business's services.

Being a value brand isn't without its difficulties. Ofcom's surveys of ISP customer satisfaction shows that TalkTalk hasn't been particularly successful at keeping its customers happy, and this dissatisfaction isn't just a recent matter.

TalkTalk Business Leased Lines

TalkTalk isn't just a broadband supplier. It's also a fibre leased line supplier, as a result of combining its own network with local circuits from Openreach, BT's highly regulated infrastructure subsidiary.

ISPs such as ourselves are able to order TalkTalk Business leased lines at wholesale prices, leasing connections at speeds of 10/100 (10Mbps of throughput over a bearer circuit that's capable of supporting 100Mbps), 20/100, 30/100, 40/100, 50/100, 100/100, 100/1000, 200/1000, 300/1000, 500/1000 and 1000/1000.

The 'missing' speeds (e.g. 60/100) aren't mentioned as there's often not much difference in price between certain bandwidth options. For example 30/100 and 40/100 will typically cost similar amounts. That's why our leased line pricing tool at the top of this page just lists six speed options.


Carrier-independent ISPs such as ourselves are free to compare wholesale leased line quotes to find the best option for any given location. We can go with the cheapest option if you'd like the best price, or can take your preferences for using (or not using) particular underlying suppliers into account. If you'd like us to use TalkTalk Business circuits, and their services are available at your location, we can do that. Alternatively, if you'd like a cheap leased line but would prefer to avoid TalkTalk, we can help with that too.

Give us a call on 020 7847 4510 and we'll help you examine your options.

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