Seeking broadband + phone + mobile consolidation options (UK).
May 16, 2009 4:41 AM   Subscribe

I'm spending about UKP65 on phone, cell/mobile phone and broadband Internet each month. How can I consolidate all these options into something cheaper but just as reliable?

I'm in the UK and about to move house. My current Internet provider is Zen, who are great but a bit pricey at UKP35 per month. I have a mobile phone which costs UKP14, and about 14 months of the contract still to run on that. I also use BT for voice calls, although I hardly use this and keep wondering if there's a decent broadband-only package I could use. Is it even possible to have broadband without paying the BT tax?

So: I have to keep the mobile for now, need a reliable broadband provider with no frills (preferably generous download limits), and would like an alternative to a BT line. Interested in options and your own experiences rather than links to broadband comparison sites. Thanks!
posted by BrokenEnglish to Computers & Internet (7 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I'd definately investigate Virgin Media if its available in your area.

I pay £35 a month for 10mb broadband, loads of TV channels and a phoneline with unlimited evening and weekend landline calls.
posted by chrispy108 at 6:56 AM on May 16, 2009

To clarify, with Virgin Media you don't need to pay BT line rental like you do with everyone else, so that £35 is all I pay. They also have cheap mobile options if you're an existing customer too, so you could look into that as your contract expires.
posted by chrispy108 at 6:57 AM on May 16, 2009

Virgin or Sky. They both offer attractive packages for phone / broadband / TV. Friends of mine had Virgin and it seemed fine. (I recollect that Virgin bought it off NTL, and there were some complaints about NTLs service). We're with Sky at the moment and it also seems fine. (Caveat: our broadband is quite variable but we're a long long way from the nearest exchange and therefore no other company is likely to do better.)
posted by outlier at 8:14 AM on May 16, 2009

Virgin is, as far as I'm aware, the only way to get broadband without a phone line, since you can get it via cable (assuming it's available in your area).
posted by EndsOfInvention at 8:20 AM on May 16, 2009

Response by poster: Thank you to all. Since my current mobile is with Virgin I might be able to trade my way out of the contract or upgrade to one of their more complete packages. Might look at Sky but I'm not much of a TV watcher...

(OT: outlier, I used to work for NTL and they hosted Virgin's datacentre in a warehouse somewhere under the A3 at Guildford. I never went there, but I understand it was horrendous -- trailing cables, poorly stacked racks, etc. Any complaints were probably justified based on what I heard! I guess they will have moved it all now (this was 10 years ago) but I must confess it's one of the things which has stopped me considering Virgin as a broadband provider. But it looks like it's time to change my mind.)

Thanks again.
posted by BrokenEnglish at 8:40 AM on May 16, 2009

I was tempted to move away from Zen (I'm on their 24UKP / month 8Mbit / 20G package) until they started being all awesome on defending their customers privacy front. I suspect they always were fairly awesome on this front anyway, it's just that we didn't have a jackbooted home secretary in charge who thought it would be a great idea to snoop on everyone's web browsing and email headers.

So I'm sticking with Zen for the moment. Of course it helps that their service is mostly awesome too. It had better be, for the price, but at least you get what you pay for.
posted by pharm at 12:35 PM on May 16, 2009

Response by poster: I agree pharm, using Zen feels like driving a "real car" compared to the plasticky hatchback I used to get with Demon. Another good aspect of their service is no long-term contract, so I can think of moving without worrying that I'm locked into a service I no longer want. And they answer emails. Yay.
posted by BrokenEnglish at 3:53 PM on May 16, 2009

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