BT Wholesale has announced plans to trial a 1Mbps consumer ADSL service this autumn.

The announcement was part of BT's presentation to ISPs at its broadband customer forum in London, where it announced an array of pilots and trial schemes.

Telewest already offers a residential 1Mbps service. It announced its plans to launch a 2Mbps consumer service this year.

Its premium 1Mbps service will be joined by a slower 256Kbps (kilobits per second) entry-level package ? prices and other details of which will be announced this summer.

BT also announced plans to extend the geographical coverage of its ADSL services to cater for an extra 600,000 households. Its current ADSL service reaches 5.5km, after which signal reduction occurs. BT believes this can extend to 6km.

BT is also considering a "simple fix" that would use copper cables so that people who are connected to their local exchanges via optical fibre, which does not support ADSL, could get broadband.

The company took time to give itself a pat on the back for its broadband-registration scheme, which has attracted interest from 300,000 people so far. The latest trigger figures, due for release on March 31, will show a further 102 exchanges (on top of the current 35) have been upgraded.

Finally, BT announced an extension to its current SDSL (symmetric digital subscriber line) trials, bringing the number of test exchanges from 22 to 100 by May.

BT now has around 750,000 broadband subscribers, leaving it on target for its deadline of 1 million this summer.