Internet providers again?

We haven't had this discussion for a while - but having just been informed by Virgin that they're going to put up their already steep prices yet again, I thought I'd revive it! Any views on the various suppliers in terms of speed, local service, cost etc? (I'm on a sinfully expensive tv/phone/broadband package - somehow it always starts out as a good deal ...)


  • grennersgrenners Ferme Park Road, N4
    Very annoying my virgin media bill going up but I only pay for internet only currently about £32 per month amd going up by £2 per month in Nov. Anniying as not so long ago i was paying about £25 per month but that's how they get you hooked.
  • It shouldn't be this way but it's pretty easy to barter with Virgin Media. Phone them up and tell them you want to leave and disconnect all your services. I've done this a couple of times. The last time they called back a couple of days later offering to halve our bill and double our broadband speed. Result.
  • I wonder how much these price increases are to do with Brexit. Liberty Global their American Owners must be repatriating less profit due to the 20% drop in the pound post Brexit. I guess they will look to offset that.
  • @Four Eyes I've had less success with bartering! I probably need to be more ruthless. But what do you do while your services are disconnected?

    @Ali I'm happy to blame Brexit for all kinds of ills, but this pattern has been going on for years - it's just Virgin rapacity ...
  • edited August 2017
    I am a Virgin customer (broadband only) and have been with them for 9 years.

    I am annoyed at the price increase too. However I must say that whenever I have had an issue, the guys have always turned up relatively quickly and have resolved it (got a new, better router in May) and the visit was easy to book.

    I'd happily switch for a cheaper contract and good technical customer service.

  • @conformable_kate Tethering - a friend in Leeds didn't bother signing up for an ISP and just tethered from her phone instead; get a mifi; have a conversation with some very nice neighbours about sharing their wifi. (I use the first two a lot, and moved out because the third one didn't work).
  • Kate . Not so sure about that they have a failing project called Lightning that is supposed to grow the Virgin Network and deliver extra cash flow and subsequently profit. It is away behind schedule which is costly. eg

    "Virgin Media has fallen far short of its goals for June despite a warning to investors from Liberty Global chief executive Mike Fries in that the operator was pursuing a "slower build pace". Given Project Lightning is expected to deliver nearly two thirds of the New York-listed company's cash flow growth, helping it service heavy debts, failing to keep that pace could be damaging."

    It is a US based company which is definitely impacted by exchange rates which I bet they didn't factor into their project. With that delayed and the exchange rates how do the make up the money. Put up prices and cut costs both of which they doing.

    They have all that debt which I guess their customers are helping service.
  • @conformable_kate I've never actually got to the point of being disconnected. One time I told them that I was thinking of leaving as they were too expensive and they dropped my bill. Last year I told them to disconnect me which they initially agreed to and told me it would be done at the end of the month - then 2 days later they phoned back with an offer I couldn't refuse. It was a bit of a gamble but it paid off!
  • Looks like I'm the only one on here with Plusnet, who I'm pretty impressed with so far (14 months into our contract with them) - v competitive prices for high speed fibre and pretty easy to deal with on customer service. I left BT as they kept hiking their prices and I got the impression they were treating their phone/internet customers as cash cow to fund their ambitious forays into televised football.

    Ironically, I believe Plusnet are actually owned by BT but operate as a separate identity.
  • @N19lurker how is customer service? As I said, I am annoyed at Virgin 's price hike but everytine I call an engineer, they turn up on time and resolve the issue. I certainly wouldn't mind a cheaper bill, though...
  • edited August 2017
    I left BT for Plusnet as well and they are the same company, as you say Plusnet are cheaper, better and don't try to up the cost every year.

    I have occasional outages for an hour or so, i just tether my phone.

    Plusnet customer service is good, friendly and efficient imo.
  • I ditched Virgin last year, took a gamble with Origin Broadband which at the time were offering £17.99 per month for broadband and phone line. Seems a bit of a barebones operation, so not sure how reliable they'd be if anything went wrong, but for 9 months or so the whole thing has worked fine. Average 10-12MB download speed, which is fine for what I need. I'll probably renew at the end of the year, or might switch to plusnet. I wouldn't go back to Virgin.
  • edited December 2017
  • grennersgrenners Ferme Park Road, N4
    Yes all I get is broadband only, no phone (I don't want one) but for about £34 per month I feel is expensive. Seems to be working fine now but a year or so ago it was a shambles and regularly out of operation. Makes me consider changing but scared of ending up with more problems.
  • We're using BT broadband here in Edinburgh, it certainly seems a lot faster and more reliable than Virgin though I haven't used it that much.
  • I'm very fed up with Virgin. Have full package but don't use landline except as contact for very elderly mother who doesn't use mobile. WiFi constantly going down. Today its up - luckily - but a few weeks after tech gets it going again its goes down again. Repeated pattern. Infuriating. And now TiVo service only offering partial service. Mr Branson, tax avoider, must be laughing at us!
  • Anyone else get the dreaded flashing light on the router?

    I get it occasionally but it is a pain in the ass!
  • AliAli
    edited September 2017
    Virgin is owned by Liberty Media. Branson allows them to use the Virgin name through a licensing arrangement. If he has a stake it is very small
  • Zen is a bit pricey but worth looking at if you want fast speeds and really good service. I've been with them a few years and only had a couple of outages, both BT's fault. They are good on any tech support and always answer the phone.
  • Lots of useful info here, thanks! Though I'm not sure it has led to a clear decision ...
  • AliAli
    edited December 2017
    Just upgraded our router with BTInfinity to a home hub 6 amazing difference to speed on wireless. It has gone from 20 to 40 mg plus, for once the hype from BT is correct. Very pleased teenage sons.
  • What is a home Jun 6 pray?
  • When Virgin (or maybe NTL?) installed our cable prior to us buying the house, they cut the BT landline, so we are reliant on Virgin unless we pay to get that landline reinstalled. Disgusting practice.
  • grennersgrenners Ferme Park Road, N4
    When virgin installed a cable at my house they didn't bury it for all of the route rather they trailed it through a hedge. Inevitably I cut my own cable with the hedge cutters.
  • Getting the old BT line put back in isn’t that difficult - I switched from Virgin and it cost I think an extra £49 for that. As I was halving my monthly broadband bill (40ish to 20ish) it was worthwhile. I switched first to Origin and now with plus net. I’d recommend the latter, good service and if you can live with 15MBish speed it’s much cheaper than cable.
  • Am in China at the moment. The only western website I can get passed the Chinese firewall without a VPN is this website.
  • Perhaps I can fix this with some robust online criticism here of the Chinese Government? :)
  • edited December 2017
    Thanks Krappy...
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