Digital Exchange first with ADSL

ISP pips rivals with June rollout of nationwide ADSL service

Business ISP Digital Exchange became the first to announce nationwide rollout of an ADSL service Thursday.

The service, available from 1 June, will cost £50 for speeds of 2Mb/s upstream and 256K downstream and will be offered via BT's ADSL service.

Other ISPs, including Demon and Freeserve, have been running ADSL trials but none have so far announced dates and prices for national rollout. Cable company ntl and rival Telewest have already rolled out high-speed cable modem access -- both for about £50 per month.

Internet development manager for Digital Exchange, Sean McAvan, admits BT has been dragging its heels with the rollout. "We were slightly frustrated at not being able to offer it sooner," he says.

He believes broadband services will transform the way people do business. "It opens up the possibility of virtual businesses. People will be able to work from home and go into the office for just an hour each week," he says.

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