Broadband ISP Reviews
When you decide to upgrade your dial-up connection to broadband or change your current broadband provider, you would certainly look for the right package that offers the best deal which also suits your requirements. Before you go into researching and online shopping for an ideal package, it is always a good thing to spend a little time to find out what you really want from your broadband connection.
Why do you need broadband?
Although this question may sound rubbish, it helps you to move on to the assessment of your needs. Broadband is definitely one of the newest technologies that have made a huge difference in the lives of people and in the business world. After using dial-up internet for ages, you might now want to take a broadband package as you have felt the need of an always-on, faster and more reliable internet connection. If so, we would say that you have taken the right step in your pursuit of the best technology that can fulfill all your communication needs.
What kind of user are you?
Defining yourself as a home user or tele-worker or a business organization is the foremost thing you have to do before you choose a broadband package. If you are a home user, you may fall into any of these categories - light user, average user or a heavy user.
If you just send and receive mails or browse internet occasionally, (in other words, if you are a light user) speed and bandwidth will hardly pose any problems for you. As the minimum bandwidth of broadband is 512 Kbps, you will find these things are done speedily using this bandwidth. At this speed, you can even make VoIP calls without experiencing any difficulties.
Why usage is an important factor in choosing the right package?
If you decide to use your broadband connection to download music or video files, not only you want a connection with higher speed but with a better usage allowance. In such a case a broadband package with 8 Mbps or above download speed and unlimited usage could be an ideal package for you. But we want to caution you that all the unlimited broadband packages subject to fair usage policy of the respective company which would actually limit your usage during peak offers. Even some of the leading ISPs practice in traffic shaping which actually reduces your bandwidth during peak hours. This often happens if you are a heavy user.
What should you look for if you want a business package?
If you are a tele-worker or running a SME (small or medium enterprise), you may actually want a business package bearing in mind that certain activities need to be prioritized over others. For instance, you would desire higher speed data transfer (both uploading & downloading) and efficient VoIP calling as all business activities could depend on them. It is very important to see that your business package comes with better contention ratio (20:1) which would guarantee prioritized traffic and reliable connection even during peak hours. You would also expect that your business package should offer unlimited email accounts, domain name, webspace and the best internet security. If you also get free wi-fi access and wireless network support, it could be the best package you are looking for. For example, the business packages from BT Total and Plusnet come with wi-fi features which would benefit your company a lot.
What are broadband reviews?
There are more than fifty ISPs in the UK that include both large & leading providers like BT, AOL, Virgin Media, Tiscali as well as small ISPs. The major ISPs have a strong presence across the country thanks to the extensive BT line network and the increasing LLU lines. Most of the small ISPs have just regional presence and the availability largely depends on where you live. Moreover, these ISPs might not have their own infrastructure and depend on the network of BT or other large ISP to provide their services leading to higher monthly cost and poor service quality. Broadband reviews often help you to identify the best ISPs in the UK and provide you all information regarding the availability and performance factors like reliability, speed, money value etc.
Why should you read broadband reviews?
With time, broadband prices have been falling as well as newer packages are flooding in the broadband market. From time to time, broadband providers constantly upgrade their products in terms of speed, download limit and by adding new features. To make an informed decision, you need to read up-to-date details of broadband deals and the expert reviews of the deals. Our broadband reviews often throw a great deal of light on the numerous packages from the view point of an expert and a potential customer. Even if you are not clear about what your actual needs are, our reviews of broadband providers and their packages can give you a right direction towards an informed choice in terms money value and service quality.
What we provide in our reviews?
The main objective of our reviews is to guide you to pick the right broadband package by providing information which is impartial and up-to-date. Sometimes, you might be simply attracted by slashed monthly cost or a free stuff that comes with a deal, but you may not be aware of hidden costs like setup cost, cancellation fee or 18 month or 24 month long contract period. Many a times, the speed that ISPs advertise and the actual speed you will get do not come closer enough to make that extra money worth spending. Our expert reviews, member reviews and our discussion forum can often help you in such situations as you get to know what you can actually get in terms of speed, service quality irrespective of what the ISPs boast in their adverts.
Our broadband reviews provide you with following information:
- About the provider - its history and infrastructure
- Products from a specific provider
- Technical details of the package - How much speed, download limit etc.
- Cost & details - monthly and annual cost including all hidden costs
- Free stuff and extras you get with the product - Whether the ISP provides email, domain name, webspace, internet security and customer support etc.
- Our rating of the provider/package is based on speed, reliability, service quality, customer support etc.
How broadband reviews help you to choose more than just a broadband deal?
It is the age of broadband bundles. Broadband bundles combine telephony, mobile service and digital TV service with broadband. If you are a home user and want to make your deal cost-effective, broadband bundle is the right choice for you. By choosing a broadband bundle, you bring all services on single bill thus making things related to payment, resolving technical and other issues much simpler. Again, choosing a broadband bundle could be tougher than choosing a stand-alone broadband deals. Virgin Media, Tiscali, AOL, Pipex and Orange are some of the ISPs who offer bundles with attractive prices and options to combine two or three services with broadband. The heavy slash in prices and free offers are enough to confuse anyone while choosing the cheapest bundle with good service quality. We do all calculations, assess how well they can work for you and help you to choose the best broadband bundle for you.
Our Expert's Rating
It is an integral part of our reviews to give our readers a fair assessment of a provider/package by using a rating system which is based on the various criteria like speed, reliability, customer support etc. The over-all rating of a provider or a package often helps you to pick a right package for you if you are unsure of your priorities. Along with our expert's rating, we also present our members' rating of a specific provider/package in our member reviews page.
Top 10 Broadband offers of the month
To make your task easier, we also feature top 10 broadband deals of a specific month. We choose the best 10 deals of the month based on the money value they offer plus the service quality of the packages. Every month, we also honour the best ISP who offers special deals by naming them the supplier of the month and the selection is purely based on the user reviews.
UK Broadband Providers
Despite the presence of more than fifty broadband providers in the UK, for reviewing we have picked up only the leading and the most reliable ISPs whom you can trust in every sense.
Undoubtedly, BT, AOL and Virgin Media are some of the largest ISPs who deliver faster, reliable broadband via their own network. BT is marching towards more and more innovations in rendering its services. Its BT Home Hub and the recent global wireless society indicates how the customer trend is fast changing towards wireless technology. BT has already announced its plan to launch ADSL+2 in near future.
Virgin Media is the pioneer in quadplay services which combine all four services on a single platform. Their prices are quite unbelievable, amazing!
We have picked up KCOM for their diversified products which caters the various needs of both home users and small businesses. It is quite amazing to see this 'not so big' ISP has been awarded with so many awards by ISPA and other organizations for its reliable service and customer support.
Demon and UK Online are truly what we can call 'business broadband providers'. They are indeed professional in the real sense of the word, whether regarding to the service quality of their packages or their superb customer support.
AOL and TalkTalk offer excellent talk plans with high-quality broadband. You may find less range of products with both the ISPs, however, their premier range of products include wireless broadband, higher speed and huge download limit.
We have included Toucan thinking some of us may still prefer the traditional 512 Kb broadband. Another reason was the wide range of Touncan's combination of broadband and phone services offer you a number of choices to choose from.