Since deregulation, phone companies have been vying for new customers with traditional BT services. Although BT is still the main provider of fixed phone lines, you can also switch to an 'indirect access' supplier, who will redirect your calls across their own network. Or you may choose to buy a ‘bundle’ of broadband with your phone package, with or without a shiny-new Voice over IP service on top.
Our much loved analogue TV network that has been in place since the 1920s is going to be switched off by 2012. This isn’t a mean or cost saving gesture by the government: it’s only by switching off analogue transmission that the government can increase the availability of digital services to everyone – which promises many more channels, better picture quality, and a whole host of other optional extras. So you’ll need to be prepared. As a result, all televisions will have to be enabled to receive digital TV. This can be done either by buying a digital TV set top box (stb or digibox), or buying an integrated digital television that has a digital tuner built in (DTV). You’ll also need to choose your reception method – aerial, cable, telephone/ASDL or satellite, and get connected. Depending on the provider you choose, they may do this for you.