Expatica news

Low-cost ‘broadband’ bound for Belgium

13 May 2004

BRUSSELS – Belgian web surfers could soon be paying considerably less for relatively high speed internet access, it was announced on Thursday.

Belgium already has one of the highest levels of high-speed or ADSL internet use in the European Union.

But paradoxically the service is also comparatively expensive here compared to other EU countries.

At present an ADSL connection costs between EUR 35 and EUR 40 a month in Belgium.

By comparison, web surfers in France or The Netherlands can pay as little as EUR 14 or 15 for a high-speed connection.

But all that is about to change – at least in part.

The two largest ADSL providers in Belgium, state-backed telecoms operator Belgacom and its competitor Telnet, have announced that they are to launch ‘high-speed’ offers costing just under EUR 30.

Internet service provider Chello is also planning a new service that will cost EUR 24.95 while Dutch company Versatel has already been offering so-called high-speed internet access costing EUR 19.90 for several weeks.

The drawback with all of these new services is that they do not offer ADSL access at the highest possible speeds available.

They are all so-called ‘lite’ services that will give surfers web access at around half the speed of the highest performing ADSL services available today.

That said, say analysts, the new services offer connection speeds far in excess of anything offered by traditional modem connections and may well be more than adequate for many web surfers’ needs.

[Copyright Expatica 2004]

Subject: Belgian news