Broadband Coverage in UK

Basic info

Wouldn't you be amazed if I tell that the number of broadband subscribers in UK has already crossed 20 million mark? This indicates how well broadband technology has influenced lives of people. This has taken its effect not only in UK but also all over the world. What factors really makes this possible? Cheaper prices, variety of packages, best technical and customer support, tight competition among the providers, mobility, easy access and easy communication are some of the factors leading to the growth of broadband network.

But what does a broadband connection really mean? A broadband connection, in general means high speed internet connection over different mediums such as telephone lines, fibre optic cables, mobile and satellite. It also means high speed internet access along with telephone connection all just in one phone line. Broadband coverage is another broad term that refers to the distance covered by a broadband signal in a particular area. Coverage is also a term that is often used by both mobile as well as broadband users.

It is important for users to understand about coverage details before actually talking about broadband providers. This article provides you with the details of different broadband providers and also their coverage details.

All about UK broadband coverage

Reports say that there are about 98% of broadband subscribers in UK who get online with mobile broadband, copper wire ADSL network or a local loop unbundled. Although huge number of people have taken up some broadband provider or the other, it is important to note that broadband speeds and prices may vary depending upon the locality, technology used and the distance between the local exchange and premises. Reports also say that the average speed of the broadband coverage is 4.1Mb. but it is surprising to note that about 15% of the homes are still are not getting broadband speed of at least 2Mb.

According to, UK has secured the 15th position among 22 European countries for high speed broadband access and 25th in the whole world. Nearly 91 percent of broadband users in the UK are getting broadband speed of more then 2Mbps.

However, before getting in to the details one must know that the different types of broadband are ADSL broadband, LLU broadband, fibre optic broadband, mobile broadband, cable broadband and satellite broadband.

Types of broadband

ADSL broadband

ADSL broadband uses copper wire to transmit signals directly from BT or its providers to customer's premises. However, the speed varies widely. Few providers provide consumers with 20Mb and 24Mb broadband while others provide upto 8Mb broadband packages. The expense incurred upon non-LLU customers is expensive than the others because LLU providers have installed their equipment right in BT exchange itself so that it can provide broadband directly to consumers from BT. Some broadband providers like AOL broadband charge an additional charge for all those who live outside the LLU network.

LLU broadband coverage

In the year 2009, UK had more than 6.2 million LLU broadband consumers to its credit. Consumers get cheaper broadband bundles and packages while enjoying free broadband packages or free line rental from broadband providers. Hence, consumers were able to save hundreds of pounds on their broadband bill.

Fibre optic broadband coverage

Virgin Media provides consumers with super fast broadband networks built with the latest fibre technology that comes with speeds of upto 100Mb. BT has promised that it will bring fibre broadband to about 40% of the UK by 2012. Consumers living in the area of Virgin Media can enjoy UK's fastest broadband package with speeds of upto 50Mb.

Mobile broadband coverage

Mobile broadband network covers more than 95% of UK population. It is always a good idea to run post code checker before buying a mobile broadband package because mobile broadband coverage varies according to the place you reside in or any other place you would like to move to.

Cable broadband coverage

Get the fastest broadband coverage from another fixed line broadband, the cable broadband. The main supplier of cable broadband in UK is Virgin Media. Also, it is the only cable broadband provider to provide the fastest broadband connection. Ofcom has recognised Virgin Media as the fastest broadband provider. They supply broadband internet, digital TV and telephone all in one line. Although cable broadband has been covered almost in every part of UK, its availability is limited still in some parts of the country. Hence, it is advised that consumers check for the availability before purchasing a cable broadband package. Virgin Media covers nearly 48% of the UK homes mostly in the urban areas. Although the advertised speeds are 50Mbps and 100Mbps, it delivers actual speed of 90 to 96% of the advertised speeds.

Now talking about the coverage of cable broadband network, the speed is slowly increasing. Virgin Media currently supplies to more than 65% of UK homes. The speed provided by this company has ranged from 2Mbps to 10Mbps. Also, the fastest cable broadband connection currently offered by Virgin Media is 50Mbps although 100Mbps has also been laid and supplied to various parts of UK.

Cable broadband allows customers to buy broadband packages in the form of bundles that includes services such as phone and TV from the same provider. According to a customer statistics report from Virgin Media, customers prefer to get all services from one company rather than getting services from different companies. It is also easy to maintain the charge incurred for the usage.

Good news for the cable broadband consumers! Virgin Media is already in the trial process off extending upto 200Mbps service in UK. Consumers have to check for cable broadband availability in their area before going for one. Virgin Media offers various broadband packages such as 30Mb, 50Mb and 100Mb. The download speed offered by Virgin Media is closure to its advertised speeds and hence consumers can very well opt for Virgin Media in case they need a fast broadband connection.

Satellite broadband coverage

Not accessible to broadband utilities. Don't worry! Satellite broadband will come to your rescue. Satellite broadband is the only option available for all those consumers who are unable to enjoy other types of broadband connections. This is mainly because consumers might be staying in remote areas where signals might not reach or there might not be any other broadband providers in that area.

Tooway satellite broadband services launched by Eutelsat offers download speed of upto 10Mbps and upload speed of 4Mbps. Eutel's satellite broadband services for business offers download speed of 50Mbps and upload speed of 20Mbps. KA-SAT, launched in the year 2010, provides coverage to as much as 82 spots at a diameter of 250Kms. Services such as Tooway can help all those consumers such as millions of households that are out of reach of other broadband services and also to those who are accessible to broadband speed as low as 2Mbps. KA-SAT offers speed of upto 70Mbps. Single satellite broadband is capable of controlling between one million and 1.5 million consumers. Although, satellite broadband has lot of advantages to its credit, one of the major disadvantage is that it has high latency. Other features such as video-on-demand and video streaming are in the process of implementation for consumers. Too way satellite broadband connection through KA-SAT reaches those places that are 'not-spots' and also a major part of the population get speeds less than 2Mbps.

Broadband providers in UK

Broadband providers of UK offer different types of broadband services for its customers. Most important broadband providers in UK are AOL, BT, O2, Orange, Plusnet, Sky, Three, TalkTalk, Virgin Media and Vodafone. Other existing broadband providers in UK are Be, KCOM, Primus, Tesco, T-Mobile and Zen.

1. AOL broadband

AOL (American Online) broadband is the one of the first providers to introduce wireless router in almost all of its packages. It has also won numerous awards for its excellent service. Start up packs come with several included features such as spam filters, firewall software, anti-virus, parental controls and pop-up blockers. Consumers require BT landline and Apple Mac OSX 10.3 or above or Windows XP/ Vista in order to install the AOL's software.

Check for the availability of AOL's broadband in your area by simply entering your post code and phone number in the box.

For customer support, call 0800 954 0306 to get their free service.

2. BT broadband

BT provides global services in more than 170 countries and is also a leading provider in the United Kingdom. BT delivers service in three ways such as making customers happy, making people more productive and making the organisation more efficient. This is the only broadband provider in UK providing all broadband customers with free unlimited Wi-fi.

Check for the availability if BT's broadband just by entering the phone number.

You can call 0800 707 6315 for any help required.

3. Orange broadband

Orange being the fourth company to emerge in to the market of broadband suppliers is the fastest growing mobile communications company in the United Kingdom. Orange communication is spread to over five continents and is also serving more than 175 million customers. It is the number one provider of broadband internet services and number three mobile operator in Europe.

Check for the availability and coverage details of Orange broadband by entering the place name or post code of your area.

Get guidance regarding any query related to broadband from Orange help and support.

4. O2 broadband

O2 broadband, one of the most important providers of broadband and mobile in the United Kingdom is also a leader in non-voice services. O2 has been listed as the three star company denoting its extraordinary working atmosphere. Currently, O2 broadband has about 18.4 million customers to its credit.

You can get to know of mobile broadband coverage of O2 broadband by entering the post code of their area.

You can also call on 0800 380 0402 for any support.

5. Plusnet

Plusnet is a provider of phone, broadband and super fast fibre broadband with speeds ranging upto 40Mb. This company has won various number of awards including the Best Overall Customer Satisfaction and Best Customer Service. Customer support service is free of cost from landlines and is open 24/7. If a customer finds a new deal then, Plusnet gives price promise to its customers by proving their service to equal to others and even above itself.

You can check for the Plusnet broadband availability checker in your area by entering your postcode and phone number.

You can also call on 0800 073 1120 for more information.

6. Sky

Sky offers great variety of extras along with their packages. This company offers Sky TV, Sky Broadband and Talk, Sky Bundles and variety of offers. Sky TV brings you wide range HD channels including Sky 3D right in to your drawing room. Sky Broadband and Talk offers unlimited broadband when customers take line rental and calls packages. Sky Broadband Everyday Lite is another package for those customers who use internet on a daily basis for either online shopping or for daily browsing activities.

You can check for Sky Broadband and Sky Talk availability in your area by just entering the house number or house name and the post code.

You can call on 08442 411 818 for more details.

7. Three

Three, one of the largest growing mobile network in UK works on data network that is built for 4G technologies. It has various services to its credit including the mobile broadband, phones, laptops and tablets. Three is always on its move to improve the internet speed to make customers more comfortable and live. This is also one of those companies focused on bringing the goods of internet right on to mobile phone.

Check for the availability of the network of Three by just entering a post code or the place name.

You can also contact Three on 0800 358 8460 for more details.

8. TalkTalk

TalkTalk is one of the fastest growing broadband providers in UK providing various services such as broadband and phone, mobile, business broadband and fibre optic broadband. TalkTalk also provides phone packages and unlimited broadband for the whole family. TalkTalk promises free customer service and also the simplest and easiest way of switching from your current provider. This company has won various awards including Best value Broadband and Home Phone 2010; and also Best value Broadband and Home Phone bundle 2011.

Check to find if TalkTalk Fibre Optic broadband is available to your area by just filling in the telephone number in the box.

Customers may also use the speed checker in order to get details about the broadband you require.

Customers can call on 0800 049 1374 for any other broadband details.

9. Virgin Media

Virgin Media is one of the leading providers of all services such as broadband, TV, phone, and mobile packages. Also, this company is the leading provider of fibre optic broadband and also the fastest broadband provider in the UK. Virgin Media provides free Catch Up TV along with TV packages, unlimited downloads and best customer service. Other highlight features are free breakdown coverage, TiVo box, 28-day money back guarantee, TV on Tap and more.

You can enter your postcode to find for the services offered by Virgin Media.

You can also call on 0845 840 7777 for more details.

10. Vodafone

Vodafone, one of the oldest companies made its first mobile call in the year 1985 and then onwards has drastically grown to a wide extent covering not only every part of the UK but also world wide. This company is well known for its excellent customer service. Vodafone has won several awards from various websites including and broadband expert and also for its fastest actual speed and best network operator.

You can check for the coverage by just entering the place name or post code in the box.

You can also call on to get detailed information regarding their services.