I know people will not like what I have to say. I worked for BT for many years(and I am a strong critic). BT and its predecessors were expected to provide service to all locations, regardless of cost. Since privatisation BT has still been expected to do this, something that its competitors have not been required to do. The reason that there is no competition in those remote places is that the competitors think that it is not commercially viable to provide the service.
Yes, BT does make a huge GROSS profit, but what is the NET profit? I know that a few years ago the Net profit was not brilliant when seen as a percentage, and the Return on Capital was also not too clever. I'm not too sure what the current situation is. I would guess that the media only shows the figure that look sensational and make good headlines.