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Krister's Blog
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Changing ISP again?

Our broadband subscription with SKY expires in July. That used to mean that I had to change ISP, as they all used to give high discounts to new customers, but not to their present customers. But Ofcom seems to have had good influence over the ISPs behaviour lately!

Our ISP History
Superfast Broadband & Phone Charges

SKY quotes a Superfast Broadband (incl. Landline) bundle at 37 per month, which includes a phone boost "Talk Anytime Extra" with free UK calls and very low international call charges.

TalkTalk's Superfast Broadband (incl. Landline) at 26 per month is based on Pay-as-you-Go phone charges. TalkTalk offers a UK phone boost at 12 per month and an International phone boost at 10 per month. The International boost would be of interest for us.

Broadband Bundles

The cost comparison based on our useage shows that SKY is cheaper with 39 per month over TalkTalk 42 per month. About half of the UK phone cost relates to waiting time when connected to call centers.

Some further factors to consider, mostly favouring the TalkTalk alternative:
  • I would like to get TalkTalk's new router (charge 10 only for new customers)
  • TalkTalk will keep the price fixed for the duration (unlike SKY)
  • Likely to get an even better deal from SKY next time around if choosing TalkTalk now?
  • Potential savings using VoIP apps 100 min/month to Sweden
I have previously tried to get my wife to phone her non-digital friend in Sweden using Hangouts, but they thought it was too laggy. That was Hangouts with Google Voice, possibly routed UK - USA - Sweden - USA - UK? Maybe Skype would be faster rooted UK - Sweden - UK? Skype is more expensive, but would still only cost 5 per month, half of TalkTalk's International Extra boost. The trial with Skype has been started and it seems Skype is less laggy then Hangouts, but the wife is still not entirely happy with it.

In the end I decided to stay with SKY for another 18 months. After that maybe move to TalkTalk?

SKY renewed

Our broadband has functioned well with SKY. Only disappointment was the router which only has two ethernet ports, instead of the normal four. Have solved that by using an older router as a ethernet switch. Our YouView boxes from previous contracts with BT and TalkTalk still work well. From 2019 on I have not subscribed to any TV service. Till now we have had Netflix for a couple of years, but will now try BritBox for a change.

Why not British Telecom?

I do not like the way BT retains ownership of the hardware: router and especially the YouView box. At least now BT makes it clear that this will be the case. But when I left BT in 2017 it was in the small print only. They charged me 69 even though I had paid all the monthly fees of the contract. I did not like that! It seems as though SKY are going the same way?