The Future's Bright...

...the past is Orange!

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11/03/2012 at 22:26

OK... so you all have computers and internet connections.

In your humble opinion, which broadband providers are good and which are absolute rubbish?

(Actually, the answer to the second half of the question is in the thread title!)

Take it as read that I'm ready for a change!

11/03/2012 at 23:23

 For home use I use Virgin.

 Fiber Optic cable so phone lines not needed and fiber optic can handel more traffic at the same time.

 I don't use mobile web, so can't comment.


Always carry a flagon of whiskey in case of snake bite..... and furthermore always carry a small snake.   W.C.FIELDS.

Walk, climb, camp. Just get out there


12/03/2012 at 00:49
Virgin and later this year they are rolling out 30 megabyte broadband speed as the minimum at no extra cost,ping your internet see how fast you are really getting or not getting.



12/03/2012 at 01:07

Virgin for me too.

Calls to customer service can be frustrating but no more so than any other company imo.

Include a little history in your walks. Pecsaetan - Ancient Derbyshire, Staffordshire and South Yorkshire -

12/03/2012 at 01:11
Virgin are bloody awful in Cardiff, blistering download speeds but a lot of dropouts at inconvenient times. Swathes of uni students have been adversely affected by their poor service and non existent customer care on a regular basis. My daughter and son in law were on virgin fibre optic broadband for 3 years in Watford, they had poor service, too.  Plusnet have a good name.
If you go to the Zen website, they'll tell you the maximum download speed capability of your line.

"...the moral test of government is how that government treats those who are in the dawn of life, the children; those who are in the twilight of life, the elderly; those who are in the shadows of life; the sick, the needy the handicapped and submariners. " ~ Last Speech of Hubert H. Humphrey

12/03/2012 at 07:18
Virgin.....cabling rural Cumbria (I think the Padster lives there)....really? Maybe ADSL?

I think they boycott anyone without a TV anyway.
12/03/2012 at 08:08

We have BT.  It works and is backed up by a company who actually know about wires and have the infrastructure to fix stuff.  Probably (Definitely!) not the cheapest though.

My dad is the clearing house for his circle's computer problems and reports that when TalkTalk gets borken they're about as much use as a one-legged man at an arse-kicking party getting it going again.


12/03/2012 at 08:41

I  was with Orange and found it ok, the chap nextdoor who is into computers and the internet suggested changing to BT as he was with it and it suited him, so I changed, getting the cheapest package, however there it a limit on the package ( there is no limit on Orange ) and the limit is passed ( especially if folk are in the house ), I could change to a higher package but then when I am away and the house is empty I will be paying £25 a month ( or what ever it may be ) and no one is using it at all.

At present I was thinking of changing back to orange as I found it worked ok in the first place. 

There are other ISP's though.

12/03/2012 at 08:41

You can only speak as you find but nearly everyone I know who has used Virgin DSL slags it off.

As to my own experience, because I live several miles from the local exchange, it was difficult to find an ISP willing to provide DSL broadband when I upgraded from dial-up years ago. Not even BT would supply it. Of the few conmpanies then offering connection, I chose Plus Net and have stayed with them ever since.

Back then, the initial service was limited to 512K (but rarely exceeded about 440k in practice). However, it's improved in stages and I can now expected up to 2meg (well, 1,850K) reasonably reliably. That is the drawback of living in the back of beyond, I suppose.

I've found Plus Net easy to deal with. They answer the phone and you get to speak to real people. Their website works well too and they respond to user contact through it promptly. I've no complaints.

12/03/2012 at 08:58

I'm currently using Be (who are fast, unmetered, unthrottled and reasonably priced but slightly limited in their availability) and before them Zen (who are widely available, fast, unthrottled but pricey if you're downloading many tens of gigabytes of stuff a month). I can heartily recommend both.

We had a lousy experience with Plusnet before that (who were applying all sorts of irritating connection speed throttling and then denying it when phoned up). I haven't used Virgin for a long time, but a few of my friends do and have found them to be fine so long as nothing goes wrong. In the event of any technical difficulties, they've been pretty useless. BT are much the same.

I've always been happy to pay a little more for a service that doesn't have secret 'traffic management' and has tech support folk who know what they're talking about. Whether you're happy to make the same tradeoff or not is up to you

12/03/2012 at 10:22
We live in a rural area 7.5 miles from the exchange which brings it's own problems.

We are with BT and the actual service and the customer service are SHITE. We've had endless calls (30-40 hours) to their service centre (-in India - unintelligible English!!). I don't know anyone in the area who thinks differently. The guy round the corner is with Talk Talk and has no problems.

Seems to depend on your area as to what is best.

12/03/2012 at 10:56

I switched from TalkTalk to BT after I got fed up with TT.

Peter Clinch wrote (see)
TalkTalk gets borken they're about as much use as a one-legged man at an arse-kicking party getting it going again.

That is pretty spot on! They are rubbish.

I live in a rural area so get a surcharge from everyone except BT for broadband so they are the cheapest for me and their service so far has been brilliant. I have not had to use their Customer Service yet though. The langauge problem is the same for TT... just add a nice level of rudeness! They are horrible!

I was with Namesco as well and they were very very good, and their customer service was fantastic and helpful (despite being located in the far-east).

12/03/2012 at 11:16

I was with Orange for may years, I think it was initially Freeserve, but BT were doing a deal, sign up for 18 months and first 3 months were free. Their monthy charge was also around £3-£4 chaper.

On contacting Orange to give them a months notice to cancel my contract with them, they were keen to keep my custom and tried to over me a better deal than BT. A bit late after taking my money all these years.

I'm happy with BT for the time being but it may be worth shopping around to see who is offering the best deals from those with a positve response on this thread.



12/03/2012 at 11:36

nearly everyone I know who has used Virgin DSL slags it off.

We have Virgin, ex-cambridge cable, and it's fine. Tho we dont use their mail servers which are rubbish.

12/03/2012 at 11:42
twiglegs wrote (see)

Virgin for me too.

Calls to customer service can be frustrating but no more so than any other company imo.

I'm with Virgin and, to be fair, the customer service seems to be improving (mind you, it used to be fecking awful so the bar is set pretty low).

The other week, we lost TV and broadband unexpectedly and when I phoned, I got a UK call centre and a courteous bloke who established that electrical work was going on (not Virgin's engineers) and the service would be back in a couple of hours.  Later I found the unopened letter that they had sent to us to warn us of the work.

The broadband service itself is very good - fast and the hub only needs re-booting every few months, if that.  Virgin are also increasing speeds at no extra cost in my area (north Bristol) soon.

No connection (as it were) just a happy customer.

12/03/2012 at 11:55

I used to have some of the problems with Virgin that Mal mentions (I'm 5 miles from Cardiff), connection dropping out for no apparent reason, but since they installed a new wee box with flashing lights it's been rock solid.

8.4MB download speed when I did a test the other night.

12/03/2012 at 12:20
I am with Talk Talk and find them OK though Tech Support usually just involves looking on the Forum rather than trying to get sense from the helpline. They do at least have a page showing current known issues which can save you a lot of grief. My daughter is with Virgin in Leeds and seems to have all sorts of problems with them.
12/03/2012 at 13:17

Aren't TalkTalk owned by or tied up with BT now anyway??

I'm on orange mobile internet at home and it is pretty dire. Used to be on neighbour's wifi on my phone as it was a lot quicker but they knocked that on the head when they got rid of their unsecure netgear hub. Gutted! I mean I was all considerate and only used it when they weren't on it. Felt like storming round there and giving them a piece of my mind but didn't know which neighbour it was!!

Looking at old BT as my landline is with them. Reckon knock useless Orange on the head and combine calls and broadband package will save me a few pennies a month. Just not sure if 10GB or 40GB is best package.

BTW if you are in the BT infinity area you can get some phenomenal speeds. A mate (and his Dad) got something over 100MB/s speeds when it got installed. They know their stuff and have all those tricks that speeds Internet up. Think they were the first ones to get it round here. If it is in your area and you want to get fast speeds then I reckon BT infinity is the real deal (subject to money of course).

I don't know what all the fuss about Indian call centres. The Indian guy I spoke to was really courteous and easy to understand. Even the Indian call centre lass from gas company I got a few years ago was easy to understand. Right down to the moment she hung up after calling me a lier and an idiot. BTW that was over her not accepting the true reading because it would have resulted in me getting over £400 back due to overcharging!!

Think I'll keep an eye on this thread myself as I need cabled broadband now too. Virgin is out as they aren't in my area and probably won't bother here neither. Not sure BT infinity will come here for a good few years even though it's supposed to be here spring this year.

12/03/2012 at 13:28
Pop your post code into this website and it tells you what's available.

If you're in the sticks then fibre optic cable speeds are probably not going to be available. You might need to change your phone line provider to the new company to get the best deals.
12/03/2012 at 14:23

TP, I have 10GB package and I would say I don't use the internet that much. I rarely download anything and I am using my 10gb no problem. So, if you use it a lot it may be worth going with the 40gb.

Indian call centres are just a problem when you can't understand what they are saying. I have plenty you could understand fine but equally I have had people I could barely understand and they were struggling to understand me!

Edited: 12/03/2012 at 14:25
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