UK Best ISP poll?

Discussion in 'Apple, Inc and Tech Industry' started by andy.barron, Mar 14, 2008.

  1. andy.barron macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2006
    Location:
    Bedford, England
    #1
    OK, with the obvious & sad crap that BT have come out with this week, what do you think the BEST value for money ISP out there, taking in mind download limits etc? What do you use, how do you find the tech (he he) support & general service?

    In a nutshell, what is the best mac ISP in the UK?

    BRING IT ON GUYS!!:D
     
  2. Caris macrumors 6502a

    Caris

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2006
    Location:
    Newcastle Upon Tyne, UK
    #2
    If you live in a Ex Telewest area (not NTL) Virgin for sure.

    I have 20MB Boradband and can't fault it.
     
  3. andy.barron thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2006
    Location:
    Bedford, England
  4. davidjearly macrumors 68020

    davidjearly

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2006
    Location:
    Glasgow, Scotland
    #4
    I have 8MB broadband with Orange. Been with them for years now and contrary to all the bad reports, I have never ever had any problems. Zero downtime at all.

    I average around 6.5MB download speed.
     
  5. Queso macrumors G4

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2006
  6. andy.barron thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2006
    Location:
    Bedford, England
    #6
    limitations of distance from exchange server etc.
    BT limitation I know. Is cable the only 'true' purchase on promise of speed from ISP? eg 'up to 8mg' etc. or is there an alternative?
     
  7. craig1410 macrumors 65816

    craig1410

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2007
    Location:
    Scotland
    #7
    I use Zen because they are the best for performance, reliability and customer service but it comes at a premium. If I wanted the best value I'd probably go with Plusnet.

    Check out http://www.thinkbroadband.com for ratings on all the major ISP's and make up your own mind.

    Cheers,
    Craig.

    ps. Zen have Mac specific support as well which is a bonus although I've never had to use it myself.
     
  8. davidjearly macrumors 68020

    davidjearly

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2006
    Location:
    Glasgow, Scotland
    #8
    Read my post above.

    I have ADSL broadband and get very close to 8MB speed. This has less to do with which company you go for, and much more related to the distance you are from your local exchange.
     
  9. craig1410 macrumors 65816

    craig1410

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2007
    Location:
    Scotland
    #9
    I would agree up to a point but if you are familiar with the structure of the communications technology used you will know that the ISP's can play a huge part in the overall performance.

    A colleague of mine has just switched from Pipex(Tiscali) over to Zen and has received a very noticeable improvement in speed (his words not mine). He says the performance is much more responsive in particular when P2P streaming video of football matches which is very important to him.

    I myself have used a number of ISP's and nothing comes close to Zen on the same physical line. Latency is low and performance is consistently high. That's what is important to me.

    Cheers,
    Craig.
     
  10. iBlue macrumors Core

    iBlue

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2005
    Location:
    London, England
    #10
    They all seem to be utter crap. This is more a measure of who is the least crap.

    We have virgin and the quality is only just OK. Their 'customer service' is appalling though. I cannot even count how many times they have screwed up our account and caused us to spend hours on the phone dealing with their incompetency.
     
  11. arkitect macrumors 601

    arkitect

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2005
    Location:
    Bath, United Kingdom
    #11
    Seconded. :)
    I am very happy with the speeds I get from Virgin 20Mb (ex-Telewest).
     
  12. Applespider macrumors G4

    Applespider

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2004
    Location:
    looking through rose-tinted spectacles...
    #12
    I use Be - who O2 bought out to offer their broadband.

    They've got their own kit in the exchanges. It's reasonably pricey but under £20 a month for true unlimited and I get 18MB to my router (although I am pretty close to exchange so that's not guaranteed)

    They've been excellent for the last 2 plus years - two outages of under 30 minutes in that time.
     
  13. scotthayes macrumors 68000

    scotthayes

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2007
    Location:
    Birmingham, England
    #13
    Oh bugger, I've just switched to Virgin from BT. Got sick of paying £25 for less than 3Mb (on a good day) hoping Virgin deliver the 4Mb (soon to be upgraded to 10Mb) they promise.
     
  14. iBlue macrumors Core

    iBlue

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2005
    Location:
    London, England
    #14
    Might be just fine. We somehow just got rotten luck with them. (such a long complicated story... which we've explained enough to them so I'll spare myself the agony here)

    They do give us our services very cheaply considering the complete torment they've put us through, which is mostly billing cock-ups. (20Mb internet for £18.50 and another £17.50-ish for phone and some basic TV, with V+ DVR. we got that bit cheaper because we were grandfathered into it from NTL)
     
  15. gazfocus macrumors 68000

    gazfocus

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2008
    Location:
    Liverpool, UK
    #15
    I think you can't really beat the speeds of Fibre Optics which Virgin use. I don't like Virgin's crappy customer support but it's the overall speed of the connection that matters for me.
     
  16. ::Lisa:: macrumors 6502a

    ::Lisa::

    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2007
    Location:
    Nottingham, UK
    #16
    Despite the bad reviews, I'm really happy with Sky. I've got 8MB and my router is actually connected at 8096Kbps. There has hardly been any downtime, but when there has it has always been a BT problem at the exchange.
     
  17. xUKHCx Administrator emeritus

    xUKHCx

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2006
    Location:
    The Kop
    #17
    I know I have slated Tiscali a lot and deservedly so but when we have connection it is the full 8Mbs and we have chugged through an awful lot of data. I checked the last two months throughput and each month it has been in excess of 120GB and they haven't capped us at all. So perhaps the odd downtime (usually for about 4 hours once every 1-2 weeks) is not so bad in consideration.
     
  18. HaGG macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2007
    #18
    I would recommend Virgin Media. Speed test tells me I get about 18mb but they have done some testing recently and I was getting results near 50mb (they are upgrading the top 20mb package to 50mb)
     
  19. andy.barron thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2006
    Location:
    Bedford, England
    #19
    Thanks very much for all the reply's everybody (nothing more than I would have expected from this superb community, take a bow all!:D)

    I am on the 'up to 8mb' package from Sky. I used to get 3mb+ but it was intermittent. I went through various rants complaining at the disruption and after a few calls to imbeciles got through to level 3 support who told me the max I could possibly get was 1.5mb. Since then my line has been 'throttled' to 1.5mb which is more stable. I did not request this nor had any control which I found unprofessional. I have tested at this end & am limited from the exchange (BT) to be 1.5mb so I guess thet were right?

    What I was after in the end from this thread, is if you are limited from the exchange via distance, is cable the way to go (will it give the 8mb I want?)

    Thanks for any replies again.:D
     
  20. steveza macrumors 68000

    steveza

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2008
    Location:
    UK
    #20
    I'm with Be and I get a faster connection speed than BT would provide (3Mb insead of 1Mb). The connection does go down from time as they have been upgrading/replacing equipment at the exchange. If you are too far away then cable is the way to go but brace yourself for variable customer service from Virgin.
     
  21. andy.barron thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2006
    Location:
    Bedford, England
    #21
    but brace yourself for variable customer service from Virgin.[/QUOTE]

    I think you or I could provide a better customer service than the people that the ISP use. I think they call it CARE IN THE COMMUNITY & introducing them back into society.

    I am in a relativealy central area & the BT best is 1.5mb. Its not like I live in a rural area, so I am thinking that cable would be better as it is available & would not be variable to distance?
     
  22. craig1410 macrumors 65816

    craig1410

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2007
    Location:
    Scotland
    #22
    First step is to see which services are available in your area. Punch your phone number and postcode into SamKnows at the following address to find out what is available. If I could get 50MB Virgin then I would but I have no cable availability and am 4km from my exchange. I'm happy I get 3MBps to be honest - it could be worse.

    http://www.samknows.com/broadband/checker2.php

    Cheers,
    Craig.
     
  23. fluidedge macrumors 65816

    fluidedge

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2007
    #24
    lol i thought you were serious for a second!!

    I've just dumped Pipex (now owned by Tiscali) and am now with O2 broadband (who own Be There) - 8Meg Uncapped downloads for £7.50 p/m

    Perfect for my needs. Nice connection speeds and very easy setup. Had them a week now and would recommend them. They have an 0800 support line too which i think is a really nice feature to offer and could be important one day!

    When choosing a package don't just look at speed and price. Look at the reviews of users and look at the support they offer, particularly if they offer an 0800 number for support

    Point of note - do a line test to see what your line can actually carry. There is no point wasting money on 20+ Meg broadband if you can actually only physically get 3 Meg, say. My line will only carry 4.3 Meg so 8 Meg connection is perfect, allowing for future line upgrades etc
     
  24. Osarkon macrumors 68020

    Osarkon

    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2006
    Location:
    Wales
    #25
    I'm also with Orange, and whilst the service is brilliant when it works (next to no downtime, fast speeds) when you do have a problem that's broadband related, you're pretty much screwed.

    Their tech support is based abroad, so getting someone you can understand is a rarity, getting someone who knows what they're on about is even more unusual. :(
     

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