What doesn’t seem to be appreciated, is that the nature of the relationship between broadband and calls has reversed, originally a ‘line’ was primarily for ‘calls’ , broadband being a service ‘on top’ of that , now broadband is the reason for the line and calls are the optional service ‘on top’ of the primary function of the line, basically falling call volumes etc mean hardly anyone uses the phone line for calls anymore, added to the old fashioned 20th century technology behind PSTN , and the fact it’s increasing problematic reliability/ maintenance etc ( they don’t manufacture it anymore ) a 21st Century solution was needed.
No consumer one needs to use BT , if BT want to make the telephony offer via a proprietary system , DV , than that’s entirely up to BT ,all options are covered, don’t want telephony you don’t need to take it , don’t want DV , don’t take BT telephony, want telephony but not with BT , but want BT broadband, that can be done use a third party VoIP provider, the only option not on the table is to stay on PSTN.
Personally I cannot understand what the fuss is about , some may have concerns about not having ‘telephony’ during a power outage , but the legacy PSTN network having this ‘facility’ was never a design imperative, it was an unintended consequence of the technology at the time , yet some people seem to think the primary function of telephony ( it’s ‘raison d'être’) is to be available when there is no power at the customer end , but it never was the case , it’s and certainly isn’t now.
There are options that couldn’t have been dreamed of when telephony was introduced ( over a hundred years ago ) , like mobiles and UPS ( uninterruptible power supply ) that can keep people contactable during power outages, so retiring the PSTN shouldn’t be a ‘worry’ to 99.9% of consumers.
Anyway the original post was about DV potentially reducing choice , it doesn’t , you can port a DV number to another provider , same as existing PSTN numbers, it down to the ‘new’ provider if they want to import , BT don’t block exports of PSTN or DV numbers , if a potential new provider refuses to import due to DV , that’s their choice, it’s only really reducing choice in the same way company’s going bust reduce choice, but you cannot blame company’s that don’t go bust for reducing choice, companies pick and chose what they want to do , and stand or fall on those decisions