Business Leased Lines - Key Facts You Need To Know

Before you buy, there are a few things you should know about getting a business leased line.

Prices for Business Leased Lines Keep Falling

If you're out of contract on your current leased line, it's time to cut your costs or increase your connection speed at no extra charge. In the medium-to-long term, leased line prices only go one way - down.

In order to benefit from these falls, you will need to sign a new contract.

To find out how much you should be paying, use the pricing tool at the top of this page, entering your postcode and select the exact address.

These price cuts are driven by the falling cost of optical equipment, regulatory-driven price reductions and increases in wholesale competition resulting from BT being required to provide services to its rivals and to allow them access to its ducts, poles and telephone exchanges.

There Isn't Much Difference In Price Between The Various Bandwidth Options As You'd Expect

Pricing isn't proportional at all. 40Mbps doesn't cost a third more than 30Mbps. In broad terms, getting 10x the bandwidth costs 2x as much.

There's often not much difference in price between 10 Mbps and 20 Mbps, or between 30 Mbps and 50 Mbps.

So it's worth getting quotes for the amount of bandwidth you anticipate needing, and in addition, for much faster speeds. You may be pleasantly surprised at just how little this changes the pricing.

We believe the market is heading towards 100Mbps as a minimum, and 100Mbps, 300Mbps, 500Mbps and 1Gbps as the standard speed options, with various lower-bandwidth options based on EFM and EoFTTC dying away.

Business Leased Lines Differ From Broadband In Several Significant Ways

The upload speed is likely to be far faster than you get from broadband.

Your company's leased line will tend to be unmetered and not subject to a 'fair usage' limit.

24/7 Support is common. And fault fix times are far faster. You're also likely to get a Service Level Agreement.

The service is dedicated, meaning that unlike with broadband, bandwidth is reserved for you all the way from your site to your ISP's core network. There's no contention.

You Have More Choice of Supplier Than You'd Expect

BT inherited an unrivalled network of telecoms ducts, poles, chambers and telephone exchanges that used to belong to the General Post Office. Lucky BT.

But UK telecoms regulator OFCOM is wise to this and won't let BT abuse that monopoly. It forces BT to allow rivals to access to that infrastructure at regulated prices and forces BT to provide certain circuits. It also ensures BT allows rivals with smaller networks to compete with BT's wholesale and retail divisions.

Business Leased Lines have a fairly long installation lead time

They often take three to four calendar months to install.

That's because most of them are based on fibre-optic cabling and require civil engineering work to be undertaken to join your site to a nearby fibre-optic network.

Although they are sometimes installed faster (in as little as 6 weeks - 30 working days) - you shouldn't bet on being that lucky.

We recommend you order your leased line at least 90 working days (i.e. 4 months) before you need it.

Bear in mind that quoted installation times are mere estimates, based on lots of orders, and tend to be quoted in working days, not calendar days.