Can I really have telephone service from one provider and ADSL (or ADSL 2+) service from another – both using the same line?

The simple answer is ‘yes’ – however this depends upon the country you are located in, the current telecommunications laws and regulations of your country, and upon the commercial conditions of the available telephone line and ADSL service providers in your country/region.


In most ‘deregulated’ countries, it is possible (using a single shared 2-wire telephone line) to receive telephone or ISDN service from one operator (typically the old phone company – the ex-monopoly operator (also called the ‘incumbent operator’) and an ADSL service from another operator (typically a newer, start-up – an Internet service provider or ISP)). Put simply, the telecommunications regulators in the affected countries have decreed that the incumbent operators must be willing to operate ‘line sharing’ and/or line ‘unbundling’ with their competitors.


Currently only very few operators are willing to provide an ADSL service only line (without an associated telephone line). This is because of the regulatory situation governing line sharing and unbundling.