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Krister's Blog
krister at hallergard dot com


Last Updated:
2019-02-01
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Changing ISP again - Now to SKY

Changing ISP gives better performance, more modern equipment and lower prices. For the third time I am now changing ISP just after my contract has expired - and I expect to change again, when my present contract expires in 18 months time. SKY Landline + Broadband costs me 27/month, compared to Talktalk's 28.50/month - though with SKY I am getting over double the broadband speed. And with "Sky Talk Anytime Extra" I am getting free UK landline calls, whereas Talktalk applied PAYG rates. As to calls to EU countries and North America both charge 2p/min - but with Talktalk I had to pay 2.50/month to get that rate. In total I expect to save at least 6/month, probably more, as we are likely to use free landline calls more often than mobile calls.

Talktalk was intending to increase with 5/month - but agreed to keep their price. But for new customers they were offering another 5 discount. The SKY price claims 50% discount, so I will probably change back to Talktalk (or to British Telecom) when the SKY contract expires.

Setup

The SKY Q Hub (ER115) has only 2 Ethernet ports, and I needed three ports. Ended up sacrificing the PC's Ethernet connection:
  • SKY Q Hub in the Office
    • Ethernet1: to YouView box in the Livingroom
    • Ethernet2: to Powerline
        BT Hub 5 in the Conservatory
        • Ethernet1: from Powerline
        • Ethernet2: to YouView box in the Conservatory
The BT Router is set to bridge mode and provides connection point and WiFi extension. The "-B" WiFi SSID are generated by the BT Router in the Conservatory. (The "Direct-62-HP ENVY 5000 series" is our WiFi printer in the Office)


Livingroom 5 GHz

Livingroom 2.4 GHz


Conservatory 2.4 GHz

Conservatory 5GHz

Broadband

The broadband package is called "Sky Fibre Max" for unlimited broadband ("up to 80 Mbps") and advertised average speeds of 63 Mbps. Router Statistics

In the Office and the Livingroom Broadband speeds 55-60 Mbps are achieved, compared to previously 20-25 Mbps with Talktalk ("up to 38 Mbps"). The Broadband speed in the Conservatory is markedly lower, only about 10 Mbps.


Speedtest Livingroom
Streaming Media

The contract does not include any TV or Streaming Media, though I'm sure SKY will pester me with such offers. Instead we use the YouView boxes from previous ISPs, which gives us all the UK terrestial FreeView channels and the UK broadcaster's Media Players, such as BBC iPlayer: In the Livingroom the BT Box (Humax DTRT2100 500GB) and in the Conservatory the Talktalk Box (Huawei DN372T.01.02.P). In addition we have Netflix (SD) in the Livingroom at 5.99/month. This is more than enough choice of entertainment for us. What is lacking is possibly Sports (did hardly ever watch BT Sport when we had the opportunity)

Our Smart Android TV (SONY Bravia KD43XD8088) also has a YouView app, but it cannot record TV programs, which is why we prefer the YouView boxes above (the TV can record to USB [using FreeView], but only if we first uninstall the YouView app). And there are these additional ways to stream to the TV:
  • from Internet, using the Smart TV's browser or its YouTube app.
  • from the PC and other devices (such as the USB-stick on the Router)
    with SMB shares on the local network - using KODI or VLC on the Smart TV
  • from Android devices using Screen Cast (Miracast) to the Smart TV