A wide range of companies now have licences allowing them to act as public telephone operators. However, the General Authorisation (under the Telecommunications Act 1984) is subject to the General Conditions of Entitlement (GCs): these conditions apply to all persons providing electronic communications networks and services. The GCs replaced the former licensing regime which applied under the Telecommunications Act 1984 until 25 July 2003, when the new EU communications regulatory framework was implemented in the UK through the Communications Act 2003.

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