I think what BT is doing is morally reprehensible. Having to make a phone call just to maintain your contract length and price is disgusting.
You should bear in mind that a customer can have multiple contracts with BT for different services, such as Line Rental, Broadband and Calls, BT TV, BT Sport. These contracts can have different start dates and minimum terms. They can also be cancelled independently though some require others to be in place.
The price of the BT Sport pack is going up in Aug. For BT broadband customers that increase is from £0 to £5. So there was never going to be an option to just keep everything exactly the same. (There was also no such option for millions of customers when Line Rental and Broadband & Calls prices went up last Dec.) This type of change doesn't require customer authorisation, just advance notification and the option to cancel. This change will have no effect on broadband contracts.
Anticipating that some customers would not be happy paying the £5, BT have introduced a new product called BT Sport Lite. Customers moving to that will I suspect offically be cancelling their BT Sport pack contract and starting a new BT Sport Lite contract. As has been pointed out you also need a minimum term of at least 12 months in place on a BT broadband contract in order to subscribe to BT Sport Lite. Often this will mean also having to start a new broadband contract. Obviously such contract changes require customer authorisation. It would be unaccetable for BT to do it without requiring a customer phone call or online form submission.
I think an option to select which single channel they want through BT Sport Lite would have been better for many customers. I guess it would have been more complicated for BT administration though.
I agree that the BT sales and advertising blurb can be pretty misleading at times, but I always take it for what it is, sales speak!
Definitely mixed messages regarding provision of BT Sport Europe via copper broadband to non-Infinity areas. I received a text response to a request I sent yesterday saying the following:
"At present we are waiting information regarding the availability of BT Sport Europe to customers who are not in a BT Infinity area".
I suppose we'll just have to wait until the letters come out to know for sure.
Anyone downgrading to sport lite WILL be put on a new 12 month contract. Watch out if you are currently on an offer!
I would just add that if you currently still have at least 12 months of a broadband minimum term remaining you probably won't have to re-contract.
The advice about any current broadband offer is a very good point. The way BT played it with discounted BT Sport in previous years was to say that your broadband would normally be re-contracted on the same terms as your current contract. By that they meant that any broadband discount you were on would still end on the originally planned date and not last for the full new 12 months minimum term. Some customers found that out the hard way.
I can confirm that there is no problem if you want to CANCEL the sports. Any Broadband &/or Calls offers will remain. They even gave me a date to ring again re future offers towards end of my current term. Hope this can be of help to clarify things for others who wish to REMOVE ALL sport.
I have just had the same experience - BT sport cancelled with no impact on broadband contract and some advise to ring back in a few months for a better broadband deal.
I suspect getting through to BT cancellations dept is going to get harder and harder. The option to cancel ought to have been explained in the blurb and the option also should have been made available online.
BT have blundered and overpaid for football which is only of real interest to fans of Chelsea or Manchester City. They know that there is insufficient interest from football fans to recoup the money wasted on their folly, so they have to make sure that fans of other sports, including legacy ESPN subscribers, foot the bill. Sky did something similar when they funded football by raising the price of non-football packages. BT Sports Lite is a joke because the non-football content that people are interested in is spread and moveable between BT Sports 1, BT Sports 2, and BT Sports ESPN.
BT have been badgering me to recontract to keep BT Sport free ( + £3/month for HD of course ).