Laptops and ISP bods.

sirbhp

LE
Book Reviewer
Hi Troops I ve just spent three week mulling over a new laptop, which ever way I turned I couldn't get the exact spec I wanted because they all seemed to be out of stock.
Any way bought one with the best Preprocess that I could afford and 16 gig RAM.
Also my Talk talk contract ran out in may and the buggers were charging me double the price , and the deal they offered me to renew was crap ( imho).

So ive been seeking a new provider and I ve come up with SHELL. now heres a thing , we get our gas an lecky with Shell and if we change to "newco" tomorrow the gas an electricity will travel the same route to my house whoever supplies.

Thinking about this I believe it s the same with ISP because who ever I use come through the same wires / fibres etc. The all offer slightly different speeds but as we know they are ALL bluddey liars . We get what we get. I ve been paying for up to 60 meg with a promise of at least 30. Very often its 5 0r 10 below this target.

So am I correct in my deduction that it does'nt matter who you go with as long as get the speed you need .?
 

RBMK

LE
Book Reviewer
DON'T GO WITH TALK TALK.

Customer service was and still is utterly shite. ?I still get spam emails on my old account because Talk Talk got hacked.

We used to be with TT, would never go near them again.

EE are OK, Sky will want to sell you the full package and hound you every few weeks with new "introductory offers"

Virgin are mostly OK but goodness gracious me, Indian call centres.

Plusnet are owned by BT and are the "budget" brand. The customer service is generally crap.
You might as well go full BT.

Have a look on broadband.co.uk
 

sirbhp

LE
Book Reviewer
thanks bro. did all that but the questions was,, since the data always comes via the same wires/ fibre what difference does it make who you use ( apart from customer service I agree.)
 
DON'T GO WITH TALK TALK.

Customer service was and still is utterly shite. ?I still get spam emails on my old account because Talk Talk got hacked.

We used to be with TT, would never go near them again.

EE are OK, Sky will want to sell you the full package and hound you every few weeks with new "introductory offers"

Virgin are mostly OK but goodness gracious me, Indian call centres.

Plusnet are owned by BT and are the "budget" brand. The customer service is generally crap.
You might as well go full BT.

Have a look on broadband.co.uk
With whistles and bells on! The mother in law was with them. When we had to move her to a secure nursing home, the utter mongish incompetence they displayed cancelling her contract was a sight to behold.

We're with Virgin. Their UK call centres are OK but if I ever have reason to ring them and "Richard" answers, I hang up immediately and try later for a Brit to answer.
 

anglo

LE
Hi Troops I ve just spent three week mulling over a new laptop, which ever way I turned I couldn't get the exact spec I wanted because they all seemed to be out of stock.
Any way bought one with the best Preprocess that I could afford and 16 gig RAM.
Also my Talk talk contract ran out in may and the buggers were charging me double the price , and the deal they offered me to renew was crap ( imho).

So ive been seeking a new provider and I ve come up with SHELL. now heres a thing , we get our gas an lecky with Shell and if we change to "newco" tomorrow the gas an electricity will travel the same route to my house whoever supplies.

Thinking about this I believe it s the same with ISP because who ever I use come through the same wires / fibres etc. The all offer slightly different speeds but as we know they are ALL bluddey liars . We get what we get. I ve been paying for up to 60 meg with a promise of at least 30. Very often its 5 0r 10 below this target.

So am I correct in my deduction that it does'nt matter who you go with as long as get the speed you need .?
I'm with Plusnet, before lock down I moved house, the house I moved from had really fast broadband,
the house I moved to has shit broadband, that's download at 18Megs, on a good day,
and upload at 0.8Megs, on a good day, I gave Plusnet a ring and they {with no hassle}
dropped the price to £16 a month and that includes anytime telephone, landline and mobile free.
I had a spot of trouble with the line, rang them, they repaired the line two days later,
So, I can't complain about Plusnet,
It's an advantage if you can speak Yorkshire to them on the telephone :)
 
thanks bro. did all that but the questions was,, since the data always comes via the same wires/ fibre what difference does it make who you use ( apart from customer service I agree.)

Speed can vary according to supplier, even through the same physical infrastructure. Funny enough, one of my parents' neighbours switched to Shell. Utterly shite looking router (Technicolor). Speed varies from 1.5Mbps (yes, really) to about 20. I loaned him my spare Netgear Nighthawk router, and speeds were no better. Frequent disconnections. He was previously with BT and was getting the same speed as my folks, 50+Mbps.
 

anglo

LE
Speed can vary according to supplier, even through the same physical infrastructure. Funny enough, one of my parents' neighbours switched to Shell. Utterly shite looking router (Technicolor). Speed varies from 1.5Mbps (yes, really) to about 20. I loaned him my spare Netgear Nighthawk router, and speeds were no better. Frequent disconnections. He was previously with BT and was getting the same speed as my folks, 50+Mbps.

If your speed is slower than expected​


Should you find that you're getting a much slower speed than your provider estimated at time of sign up, the Ofcom voluntary Code Of Practice requires the provider to work with you and give advice to increase your speed.


If your speed cannot be improved, then an Ofcom voluntary Code Of Practice provider should give you the offer of paying a lower monthly bill, equivalent to the cost of a slower product, should one be available, or give you the option of leaving your contract early and without penalties. In June 2015, Ofcom strengthened the voluntary Code Of Practice so that customers can now leave contracts performing significantly under their initial estimate at any point during their contract, not just in the first 3 months.
 

Sarastro

LE
Kit Reviewer
So am I correct in my deduction that it does'nt matter who you go with as long as get the speed you need .?
No.

The secondary-business style ISPs (those that are not dedicated ISPs, such as Sky, Shell, Post Office, etc) are often giving you a truncated service. Their bandwith allocation is often patchy (speed is not everything in an internet connection) and the quality depends on when / where you are. They also tend to be pretty badly managed, so support etc is poor. Some apply limited services (i.e. you cannot do as much as you could on a 'normal' connection) or misconfigured protocols. By service I don't mean customer service - I mean the actual service you are using every day is more limited. You are getting a lesser product. An example of truncated service is someone I know who was on Sky, who didn't get data messages on their phone. When they swapped the SIM to another provider, everything else being the same, it was fine. What seems to have been happening is that Sky were somehow blocking the MMS protocol on their service - this is mental, as many devices these days default to MMS for various reasons.

Honestly, although the main UK providers are not great and have their issues, they are at least dedicated telecoms / ISPs and so have some expertise in those functions, and incentive to stay with the pack. Usually what you are getting with a non-ISP is actually rented bandwith from one of the main providers (Shell is, I think, TalkTalk), but with an additional layer of service management and none of the support from the real ISP. You are, in effect, the poor cousin of the real ISP traffic. So although the headline prices / speeds look good, the service is often poor or confusing - if you've ever had the experience of something that should work just not working, and no idea why, that is how limited service manifests itself.

Basically, internet standards are no longer universally applied, and the chance is that with a non-ISP you are getting a bad deal. Unfortunately, most reviews these days are also junk - any review that focuses on price, package and the speed the reviewer gets (i.e. most of them) is technically illiterate, as any engineer can tell you that speed is always highly dependent on your location and the infrastructure there, let alone substantial differences in service management.

The UK does have some good smaller ISPs, however. AAISP is a bit more expensive than the average, but excellent provision and service. Zen used to be good, but dipped a few years ago when they got big - not sure if they have gotten better or worse since. It's worth having a look at the smaller providers - if you can find an acceptable price, you get much better deal. Largely, such as with AAISP, you are getting a genuinely unfiltered service - many of the larger ISPs have had to sign up to legislation as named internet providers, and so have many more filters, blocks etc on your service than was the case ten or twenty years ago.

Also, if it's not too late, don't buy a laptop now if you can possibly avoid it. The semiconductor shortage means they are about 50-100% the cost of what you would have paid a year ago.
 

endure

GCM
I've been with Virgin since they were NTL and, at most, I've had a couple of hours off line in the past decade+.

I get a full 110mb/s down with no throttling and excellent reliability.

I do have to call them when my contract runs out and threaten to leave to get a reasonable price.

I pay £43 a month for which I get 100mb/s+ internet, loads of crap telly programs and a phone line with outrageous prices but I use 18185 when I need to use the landline.

Worth seeing if they're available in your area.

E2A Virgin use their own network/cables which are not part of Openreach.
 
Last edited:

Sarastro

LE
Kit Reviewer
Speed can vary according to supplier, even through the same physical infrastructure. Funny enough, one of my parents' neighbours switched to Shell. Utterly shite looking router (Technicolor). Speed varies from 1.5Mbps (yes, really) to about 20. I loaned him my spare Netgear Nighthawk router, and speeds were no better. Frequent disconnections. He was previously with BT and was getting the same speed as my folks, 50+Mbps.

The speed variation is usually a result of bandwith sharing / distribution by the service provider. All providers do it, but they have different policies and varying bandwith in any given area (relative to subscribers).

Disconnections are often a configuration issue between the ISP and your router. Sometimes it's your misconfigured router, but increasingly these days with PPPoE and VDSL, it's a problem with the ISP - they don't support all router models, or a deliberately applied filter on their end.

@sirbhp a simple way of looking at this is: if all ISPs were all the same, and you are using the same equipment, then you should get the same service. As noted above, when someone tests this, it is rarely the case. What is advertised as "speed" differences actually masks a whole host of infrastructure, customer base and service differences for any given provider at any given point in time.
 

offog

LE
I've been with Virgin since they were NTL and, at most, I've had a couple of hours off line in the past decade+.

I get a full 110mb/s down with no throttling and excellent reliability.

I do have to call them when my contract runs out and threaten to leave to get a reasonable price.

I pay £43 a month for which I get 100mb/s+ internet, loads of crap telly programs and a phone line with outrageous prices but I use 18185 when I need to use the landline.

Worth seeing if they're available in your area.
Same with me. I have fibreoptic.

A month ago I had son, daughter and boyfriend all using it as well as me playing games on steam. They were working and using video conferencing during the day, some times at the same time. My son was remoting his laptop to his PC in the office in Scotland and at one time watching motion capture in the US for the game he is working on.

I had absolutely no problems over the week they were all at home.
 

sirbhp

LE
Book Reviewer
I'm with Plusnet, before lock down I moved house, the house I moved from had really fast broadband,
the house I moved to has shit broadband, that's download at 18Megs, on a good day,
and upload at 0.8Megs, on a good day, I gave Plusnet a ring and they {with no hassle}
dropped the price to £16 a month and that includes anytime telephone, landline and mobile free.
I had a spot of trouble with the line, rang them, they repaired the line two days later,
So, I can't complain about Plusnet,
It's an advantage if you can speak Yorkshire to them on the telephone :)
Owned by BT its their lower end package offering .
 

sirbhp

LE
Book Reviewer
The speed variation is usually a result of bandwith sharing / distribution by the service provider. All providers do it, but they have different policies and varying bandwith in any given area (relative to subscribers).

Disconnections are often a configuration issue between the ISP and your router. Sometimes it's your misconfigured router, but increasingly these days with PPPoE and VDSL, it's a problem with the ISP - they don't support all router models, or a deliberately applied filter on their end.

@sirbhp a simple way of looking at this is: if all ISPs were all the same, and you are using the same equipment, then you should get the same service. As noted above, when someone tests this, it is rarely the case. What is advertised as "speed" differences actually masks a whole host of infrastructure, customer base and service differences for any given provider at any given point in time.
I would agree normal but except for quality of customer service one of the villagers who used to sell Virgin and is a computer buff tells me that im on the right track . Also if say there are five people on my current cabinet to copper wire line provided by say talk talk I might get super speeds , but when the kids come home from school and I get say 10 on line talk talk slows due to copper wire band with. Plusnet and Talktalk tole me this .

Remember back in the day when our pooters went slow we sais " ah its because the yanks have woken up and are using the service at work " .
 

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