In a significant departure from the company line on how much it spends on upgrades and maintenance, Mike McTighe said BT should have put more money into its network.
Mr McTighe, a telecoms industry veteran appointed as Openreach’s first chairman in November under reforms of the unit by BT, said he would seek to invest more “in the ground” to improve Britain’s connectivity.
He added: “Should that have been done a few years ago? Of course. But we are where we are.”
The admission is likely to add to City speculation that BT will unveil an increase in network spending and the number of homes that will be fitted with a full fibre-optic connection. Such links are capable of ultrafast speeds and more reliable than existing copper telephone lines.