BT is testing what it has coined 'Midband'. It's primarily for homes in the UK that cannot at present receive BT Broadband. BT broadband currently covers 77% of BT's network, other areas are currently being upgraded where there is demand.
Midband will feature an always-on connection, and run at 128kbps.
Experts think they will probably use ISDN for this service, using ISDN's 16kbps D-Channel for the always-on connection, which can be used for receiving emails, and the 2 B-Channels (64kbps each) for simultaneous data and voice.
If this is the case then dialling up will be necessary, although ISDN dial-up is significantly faster than a traditional modem.