Belgacom, the incumbent telecom operator in Belgium, says it will stop delivering dial-up service to customers. The company says it does not make any sense to continue delivering dial-up service, which very few use.
Belgacom estimates that it has very few dial-up customers left and most of them live in rural areas where there is no ADSL. Fortunately, ADSL now reaches 99.7% of the population so there are hardly any places left in Belgium where one can’t get ADSL service.
And where there is no ADSL, people should just use Belgacom’s 3G wireless service, the company says. This is more expensive and does not address the affordability problem (i.e. dial-up is much cheaper than ADSL, which is why some people are still on dial-up).
Some politicians have expressed concern that those who are still using dial-up do so because they can’t afford ADSL service. Belgians still pay a relatively high price for ADSL service compared to other EU member states, according to EU commissioner, Viviane Reding. The Belgian ISP association says that other ISPs such as Scarlet and Tele2 are willing to step in to offer dial-up service to former Belgacom customers who do not move up to ADSL.