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Openreach has refuted suggestions that BT is losing the argument over a possible legal separation.

Ofcom has ordered BT to give more independence and investment powers to Openreach, with the broadband subsidiary being run as a distinct and legally separate company with its own board.

The watchdog believes its proposals will provide Openreach with the greatest possible degree of independence without separating the companies entirely, and lead to decisions being taken for the good of its customers and the wider telecoms industry.

Fix Britain's Internet - an industry coalition consisting of Sky, TalkTalk, Vodafone and the Federation of Communication Services - has since urged internet users who are unhappy with the service they receive to air their views to Ofcom in its consultation on the proposed reforms to Openreach.

In response, BT and Virgin Media published a joint advertisement in national newspapers this week, stressing that £15 billion has been invested in broadband technology over the last five years and that Britain boasts faster average download speeds than France, Germany, Spain and Italy.

However, this latest move has prompted suggestions that BT is losing the ongoing argument over Openreach's future.

Head of Openreach Clive Selley has insisted this is not the case, telling Ars: "We need to get the facts out there and the facts are that between ourselves in Openreach and Virgin Media, we actually have a Europe-leading broadband infrastructure.

"We are able to deliver superfast speeds to a larger proportion of the UK population than the infrastructure providers of Germany can do in Germany, or Spain can do in Spain, or Italy can do in Italy."

Mr Selley acknowledged that there is much more to be done until everyone can get access to superfast broadband and to drive a faster transition from superfast to ultrafast connectivity. However, he said the UK is currently "in a decent position" for this to happen.

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