BT

The UK's largest telecoms provider offering nationwide broadband availability with the same low prices even in rural areas

  • Wide range of packages available with truly unlimited usage
  • Faster than average basic fibre with up to 52Mb on Infinity 1
  • Free access to over 5 million BT Wi-fi hotspots
  • Free technical support over a variety of media
  • Wide range of TV inclusive options with BT TV
  • Infinity comes with the fastest and smartest hub of any major broadband provider
  • BT Sport Pack, exclusively covering UEFA football and 38 Premier League matches

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BT Unlimited Broadband and Weekend Calls
£23.99 for 12 months
£40.99 thereafter

£9.99 upfront cost

  • Online only: £50 BT Reward Card!
  • 12 months reduced price!
  • Truly unlimited usage
  • BT Sport Pack only £6 extra
  • Free BT Sport app and player
  • Unlimited Wi-Fi access
  • BT Home Hub 4 with n-rated Wi-Fi
  • Weekend UK landline calls
  • Free connection
  • 12 month contract

Buy now

BT Infinity 1 Unlimited with Weekend Calls
£28.99 for 12 months
£44.99 thereafter

£9.99 upfront cost

  • Online only: £100 BT Reward Card!
  • 12 months reduced price!
  • Up to 52Mb download speed
  • Up to 9.5Mb upload speed!
  • Truly unlimited usage
  • BT Sport Pack only £6 extra
  • BT Smart Hub with ac-rated Wi-Fi and smart technology to give faster connections in more rooms!
  • Unlimited Wi-Fi access
  • Weekend UK landline calls
  • Free connection
  • 12 month contract

Buy now

BT TV Starter + Sport with Unlimited Broadband and Weekend Calls
£28.99 for 12 months
£44.49 thereafter

£9.99 upfront cost

  • Online only: £50 BT Reward Card!
  • 12 months reduced price!
  • Truly unlimited usage
  • BT Sport Pack free with BT TV
  • AMC channel free with BT TV
  • TV Starter - pause and rewind 80 live Freeview channels (12 in HD)
  • TV Catch-up and On Demand
  • Free BT Sport app and player
  • Unlimited Wi-Fi access
  • BT Home Hub 4 with n-rated Wi-Fi
  • 100GB BT Cloud storage
  • Weekend UK landline calls
  • Free connection
  • 12 month contract

Buy now

Reasons to choose BT

  • Established reputation - BT have been operating for a very long time, and it's a name that people know and trust
  • Available nationwide - BT Broadband's lowest prices are available at all BT telephone exchanges, even in rural areas
  • Infinity 2 - BT were the first to offer the higher up to 76Mb speeds, and plans are under way for upgrades to Infinity 3 (160Mb) and Infinity 4 (300Mb)
  • Faster basic fibre - BT's Infinity 1 fibre products offer up to 52Mb speeds, beating most competitors' up to 38Mb
  • Variety of packages with truly unlimited usage
  • BT TV - enjoy a range of TV channels, movies and catchup TV powered by YouView
  • BT Sport - not just on BT TV, all BT broadband customers have access to BT Sport Lite via the online player at BTSport.com - BT Sport Pack with exclusive live UEFA matches is free on BT TV and only £6 per month for BT Broadband customers via the app or an existing Sky TV package
  • Line rental saver - pay £205.08 for a year up front, a saving on paying it on a monthly basis
  • Comprehensive security - with Family Protection and Net Protect Plus from McAfee
  • Extensive support options - you can get in touch with BT in a variety of ways, including the phone, online chat, online forums and Twitter
  • Smart Hub for Infinity - router with the latest 802.11ac wireless technology and smart techology to get faster Wi-Fi connections in more rooms of your home. BT claim this beats the latest hubs from other major UK broadband providers
  • BT Wi-Fi - free and unlimited access over 4 million wi-fi hotspots in the UK - the UK's largest hotspot network
  • BT Cloud storage - for storing your personal files, the amount depends on the size of the package
  • SmartTalk app - lets you use your mobile phone via wi-fi to get the same rates as yout BT landline

Possible downsides

  • Line rental - BT's line rental may not be the cheapest to pay on a monthly basis, but paying for a year up front offsets the costs
  • BT line rental required - this is not a problem for a lot of customers as they may already use BT for their phone needs
  • Must use BT for phone - unlike some providers, such as Plusnet, it's not possible to take your call plan and line rental from another phone supplier
  • Best Hub not on standard broadband - If you're not opting for BT Infinity you need to pay £50 extra to for the BT Smart Hub, or opt for the slower free Home Hub 4
  • No short contracts - All products are on 12 month contracts and prices rise from the 13th month

Features at a glance

  • Up to 17Mbps download speeds or up to 76Mbps via fibre optic BT Infinity Broadband

  • 12 month contracts on all deals

  • Truly unlimited download allowances on many deals

  • Many deals with free connection

  • Free 24/7 customer support

  • BT Yahoo email accounts that don't get full included with all deals

  • Security from basic to advanced McAffee protection

  • BT Home Hub 4 802.11n wireless router as standard or 802.11ac BT Smart Hub with BT Infinity

  • Range of BT TV packages available from BT TV Starter to Total Entertainment with exclusive channels and Ultra HD

  • Inclusive phone calling to UK landline numbers with some packages

  • Free access to thousands of wi-fi hotspots worldwide

  • Line rental required for all packages

  • BT Broadband have published a Traffic Management Policy

2.8 stars
  satisfaction rating based on 53438 customer ratings since 2016-05-27. See more BT customer ratings and reviews.

Details last checked on 2017-05-26

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Package    
Speed    
Usage    
Contract  (Sorted)  
1st Year Cost    
Monthly Cost    
BT Unlimited Broadband and Weekend Calls More Info

Special offer: £50 BT Reward Card + 12 months reduced price + BT Sport Lite + free connection!

802.11n Wireless RouterPhone CallingLine Rental

up to
17Mb
truly
unlimited
12
months
£298 £23.99
£40.99 after 12 months
Reward only available to new customers signing up online

£9.99 upfront cost

Go to site
BT TV Starter + Sport with Unlimited Broadband and Weekend Calls More Info

Special offer: £50 BT Reward Card + 12 months reduced price + Free BT Sport Pack + Free AMC channel + TV Starter + free connection!

802.11n Wireless RouterPhone CallingTelevision ServiceLine Rental

up to
17Mb
truly
unlimited
12
months
£358 £28.99
£44.49 after 12 months
Reward only available to new customers signing up online

£9.99 upfront cost

Go to site
BT Infinity 1 Unlimited with Weekend Calls More Info

Online exclusive: £100 BT Reward Card + 12 months reduced price + BT Sport Lite + Smart Hub + free connection!
Add Anytime calls for just £7.95 a month!

802.11ac Wireless RouterPhone CallingLine Rental

up to
52Mb
truly
unlimited
12
months
£358 £28.99
£44.99 after 12 months
Reward only available to new customers signing up online

£9.99 upfront cost

Go to site
BT TV Entertainment Plus with Unlimited Infinity 1 and Weekend Calls More Info

Online exclusive: £100 BT Reward Card + 12 months reduced price + Free BT Sport Pack + Free AMC channel + Smart Hub + free connection!
Now up to 52Mb; the fastest fibre speeds as standard!

802.11ac Wireless RouterPhone CallingTelevision ServiceLine Rental

up to
52Mb
truly
unlimited
12
months
£454 £36.99
£54.99 after 12 months
Reward only available to new customers signing up online

£9.99 upfront cost

Go to site
BT Total Entertainment with Unlimited BT Infinity 1 and Weekend Calls More Info

Online exclusive: £100 BT Reward Card + 12 months reduced price + BT Sport Ultra HD + Free BT Sport Pack + Free AMC channel + Smart Hub + free connection!

802.11ac Wireless RouterPhone CallingTelevision ServiceLine Rental

up to
52Mb
truly
unlimited
12
months
£514 £41.99
£62.99 after 12 months
Reward only available to new customers signing up online

£9.99 upfront cost

Go to site
BT Infinity 2 Unlimited with Weekend Calls More Info

Online exclusive: £100 BT Reward Card + 12 months reduced price + BT Sport Lite + Smart Hub + free connection!

802.11ac Wireless RouterPhone CallingLine Rental

up to
76Mb
truly
unlimited
12
months
£550 £44.99
£50.49 after 12 months
Reward only available to new customers signing up online

£9.99 upfront cost

Go to site
BT TV Entertainment Plus with Unlimited Infinity 2 and Weekend Calls More Info

Online exclusive: £100 BT Reward Card + 12 months reduced price + Free BT Sport Pack + Free AMC channel + Smart Hub + free connection!

802.11ac Wireless RouterPhone CallingTelevision ServiceLine Rental

up to
76Mb
truly
unlimited
12
months
£646 £52.99
£60.49 after 12 months
Reward only available to new customers signing up online

£9.99 upfront cost

Go to site
BT Total Entertainment with Unlimited BT Infinity 2 and Weekend Calls More Info

Online exclusive: £100 BT Reward Card + 12 months reduced price + BT Sport Ultra HD + Free BT Sport Pack + Free AMC channel + Smart Hub + free connection!

802.11ac Wireless RouterPhone CallingTelevision ServiceLine Rental

up to
76Mb
truly
unlimited
12
months
£706 £57.99
£68.49 after 12 months
Reward only available to new customers signing up online

£9.99 upfront cost

Go to site
  • ICON KEY
  • Wireless Router
  • 802.11n Wireless Router
  • 802.11ac Wireless Router
  • Phone Calling
  • Television Service
  • Line Rental

Details last checked on 2017-05-26

Customer Reviews

Sometimes the best way to get a feel for a broadband provider is to read what those who are already customers think of the service they're receiving. Below are all the reviews we've received for BT.

Customer Ratings Summary

  • Satisfaction
    2.8 stars
  • Speed
    2.6 stars
  • Reliability
    2.7 stars
  • Customer Service
    2.7 stars

Based on 53438 customer ratings since 2016-05-27

Show all time ratings

Add your own review of BT

Ratings are left by users of our speed test as well as by reviewers. Recent star ratings summarise the last 12 months of ratings or the last 100 placed, whichever is largest.

Reviewer Location Reviewing Date Ratings
Can't wait for my contract to end!!!! Customer service is so bad. I'm paying for the fibre but not getting the guaranteed speed. If I was to cancel early then I would have to pay!!! No one knows what they are talking about and either pass me on to a different department who then hangs up or tries to call me back on the home number during working times, even though I asked them to make a note to ring on my mobile after 6pm. Do not recommend BT at all!!!!
Chelmsford BT  
It's hard to know where to begin summarising the standard of service I've received from BT recently. It seems like I've been battling their total lack of competence since the dawn of time but I'll try and cast my mind back to what was a much simpler time in order to recount the full sordid story. To begin with I received a bill which charged me an extra £66 for 'excess broadband usage'. I called to query this and was informed by a delightfully self righteous woman that this couldn't be a mistake (I wish I could track her down now to point out the irony of this statement) and that there was no way of removing it from my bill. Not to be off put, I cancelled my standing order and raised a complaint in which I challenged the charge and asked for it to be removed. A week passed, no response. I called and was told somebody would be in touch. Another week passed by, the silence remained but alas my services did not. They were disconnected and ran headlong into the abyss from which they are yet to emerge. Eventually I received a missed call from BT while I was at work but no voicemail with a number to ring back on. The same thing happened the next day and then despite numerous phone calls to the main customer service line on my part I couldn't get through to speak to the complaint handler, who remained as elusive as Ronnie Briggs in the 80s. 2 months into this fiasco I was informed that the complaint had been closed, BT in their infinite wisdom clearly believing that when I stated their customer service was 'worse than being homeless' what I actually meant was 'I am happy for this to be withdrawn without compensation or resumption of services'. I'm sure we can all spot the similarities between the two comments. Finally, a week later, and with my desire for a move to a pre technological village in the Amazon rainforest growing stronger by the minute, BT accepted liability for the mistake and agreed to waive the outstanding balance on my account. Remarkably, the BT customer care machine now went into reverse and having excelled at providing a level of service even the mass murdering General Pinochet would have found disrespectful, they started falling over themselves to make it even worse. First I was told my services had not been disconnected but cancelled outright which meant I would have to be treated as a new customer and would be charged a £40 installation fee on top of waiting a week to be connected. Likening this charge to an assault victim being head butted at his own compensation review meeting I succeeded in having it removed (I stopped short of throwing a celebratory street party). I was then sent a hub. The hub was in fact the wrong kind. I was then sent another hub. The new and improved model did not work. Eager to play my part in resolving this omnishambles I took a day off work in order to wait around for an engineer to come and identify the problem but in a rare moment of oversight on BT's part the appointment couldn't go ahead due to 'insufficient resources and a heavy workload'. in a display of gratitude which touched my weary soul they decided to inform me of this 30 minutes after the 5 hour window for the engineer's arrival had elapsed. And so here we are. I'm now told another appointment can't be scheduled until next week and just so I was in no doubt about my own role in this farce, I've just been reminded by text that if the Internet fault turns out to be the result of the wiring or phone socket in my house then I will owe BT £129 to cover the cost of the, as yet untraceable, engineer. Fair enough I'd say given the way they've nurtured me through this difficult period with the care and attention of a first time mother. I may one day be connected to the internet again. Or maybe by that time the Internet age will have passed us by. Either way, BT are a joke. Avoid them at all costs.
  • Satisfaction
    1 star
  • Speed
    1 star
  • Reliability
    1 star
  • Customer Service
    1 star
Edinburgh BT  
sometime is good
but normally very slow, very very slow and unstable
  • Satisfaction
    1 star
  • Speed
    2 stars
  • Reliability
    1 star
  • Customer Service
    1 star
Winnipeg Quay,Salford, Manchester BT  
Quite frankly - a very poor overall service with support staff unable to answer the most basic of questions. Fault response - expect 24hour delays even when dealing with business accounts. It's honestly disgraceful how BT can monopolise the internet hardline service with no real comeback on poor service.
  • Satisfaction
    1 star
  • Speed
    1 star
  • Reliability
    1 star
  • Customer Service
    1 star
London BT  
I hate the fact that you enter into a 12 month contract with them at a fixed price and they unilaterally decide to increase your bills by 10%. Because you are in a contract with them there is nothing you can do to get out of it other than paying the excessive early cancellation penalties. I can't even cancel after 12 months as they say you need to give them 30 days notice but that if you give it to them before the end of your contract they count this as your cancellation date and charge you for the equipment under early cancellation effectively holding you hostage. Bunch of thieves!
  • Satisfaction
    1 star
  • Speed
    1 star
  • Reliability
    2 stars
  • Customer Service
    4 stars
London BT  
AVOID, terrible router. Terrible customer service.

I have a faulty BT Home Hub 4.0. I was persuaded to switch to BT from Sky by a sales person. Sounded great. The reality is different. I was sent a faulty BT Hub 4.0 - the hub they send as standard We can’t connect to it wirelessly for longer than a couple of hours. It disconnects regularly and struggles to reconnect once disconnected. This is when we are sat in the same room as the router.

The internet connection coming into the house is fine, we know this as it was a perfect service when we were with sky and they use the same broadband lines. We know the internet connects with the router it’s the wireless part of the chain that is the issue. The BT router is in exactly the same place as our sky router used to be and we are using the same devices to connect to it. The only variable that could be causing the issue is the router. There are thousands of complaints about fault home hub 4.0 routers online. Wish I’d researched before switching from sky.

After speaking with customer care I was told “We don’t guarantee a wireless service, we are an internet service” which was such a kick in the teeth. Of course I thought I would have wireless when I agreed to switch my internet provider. “Our systems are showing the HUB is not faulty”. Of course from BT’s end everything looks fine as they know that internet is coming into the house and reaching the router. It’s wireless part o the chain which obviously BT can’t test from their office. We are not getting sent a stable wireless signal from our faulty router and we can’t use the service properly as a result.

I asked for a replacement Hub, they said no. “We can’t send out a free router”. Terrible response. I said due to the hub 4.0 complaints.

We are completely unsatisfied. AVOID. Go with Sky always.
  • Satisfaction
    1 star
  • Speed
    1 star
  • Reliability
    1 star
  • Customer Service
    1 star
London BT  
THE UPGRADE THAT DOWNGRADED MY BROADBAND.
Upgraded my Broadband from 13MBS to the fastest available in my area 22MBs. When the switch over day came broadband down to 0.2MBs!!!. Engineer came out to check what is wrong. I have been put on an old telephone line that is 11Km long, instead of the 2KM one that went to a local fibre cabinet that I was using before. I rang BT and they say I was always on the 11Km line the engineer has tested your line and there is nothing wrong with it!!!! I could never have achieved the 12MB speeds I said. I told them I had a VDSL line before and now I am switched to a ADSL line. They do not even know what I am talking about. They said what is VDSL?. 5 hours on the phone and am no closer to getting their big mistake fixed. Wish I had not bothered trying to get an upgrade.
  • Satisfaction
    1 star
  • Speed
    1 star
  • Reliability
    1 star
  • Customer Service
    1 star
UK BT  
I've just changed my broadband fibre package from talktalk to BT Infinity & TV. The change over was on the 17/05/2017, BT kept me informed as to when the Hub ect. would arrive, & that my landline phone would be disconnected for a while until they reconnected it.
I set the infinity Hub & youview up myself & when I turned them on we were up & running, so I connected my smart TVs & computers & everything is working perfectly. So far I'm well impressed.

  • Satisfaction
    5 stars
  • Speed
    5 stars
  • Reliability
    5 stars
  • Customer Service
    5 stars
Fareham BT  
In an age where most compete on service in some ways it is interesting to find an organisation that has true contempt for their customers.

BT pines for the time when it was a monopoly and is genuinely bewildered by the concept of customer service.

It has been 58 days since I was definitely promised an engineer visit to install my BT fibre-to-the-premises, I have been treated to 39 days of "executive level complaint handling" and I am absolutely no closer to receiving any service whatsoever from this organisation. They just cancelled a promised engineer visit yesterday because a pole is rotten. They failed to spot this when conducting a very much delayed survey.

A couple of times a week I will get a "I am investigating what further on-going work is required" message but the only advance that occurred was when I sent them a photo of trees that had been trimmed as they are utterly unable to find this out for themselves.

With executive level complaint handling I receive incompetence and unprofessionalism, it makes me wonder what you get with basic level complaint handling. Do they add arson?
Wales BT  
Renewed 12-month contract with BT to maintain the discount. They said everything would be the same except I could expect slightly faster broadband. When the new contract started the Broadband stopped working and I am left with a flashing DSL LED. Called their help desk and was told I needed to wait 48 hours before the service would start working and they were going to do nothing in those 48 hours to help. Children were off school for study leave had to take them to the local library so they could study. I work from home and had to sit in my car at a local car park and use my phone as a hotspot so I could work as the 3G is useless where I live. After 48 hours still no broadband. Called the help desk (it sounded like a call centre in India) they said I needed to stay on the phone while they tested the line. During the test the line went dead and I was left with only the dial tone, they did not call be back. After hours of waiting I called again and explained what happened. They looked at the notes and said I had put the phone down on the support parson during the test so that’s why they did not call back! They then started querying how I had my name spelling on the account name saying that is not how my name should be spelled. They also had my house number wrong in the system they were now using they had everything correct except they had the wrong house number. This support person was extremely rude to me (it sounded like a call centre in India) They tested the line and said it was fine I must have done something to stop it from working. They were unable to help and were even describing the hub and open reach modem incorrectly telling me there were not the ports on it I was seeing. They said they would send out an engineer to have a look. The following day I looked online when I was using my phone as a hotspot and on the BT site, the fault said it was fixed. I called them again and was told to stop calling them! they were dealing with it!!. I called them the following day to confirm an engineer was coming as their website said there was a fault and when I clicked on the link it said the fault was fixed, they had a look and said they could not see any appointment for an engineer. I asked them were they sure. I told them when the engineer was supposed to be coming and they then said they could now see the appointment. So far no broadband or engineer. I have spent countless hours waiting it queues as their automated system says we are extremely bust at the moment. The children have to keep going to the library to use broadband as their homework’s are posted on Show My Homework website. I cannot do my work properly I need to keep going out in my car to find a good 3G/4G hotspot. I told BT I worked from home but they are doing nothing at all to help me! I would advise everyone to avoid BT at all costs they are a nightmare to deal with.
  • Satisfaction
    1 star
  • Speed
    1 star
  • Reliability
    1 star
  • Customer Service
    1 star
Antrim BT  

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money

Loyal broadband customers pay £113 more than those who switch providers

Posted on 2017-04-12 13:46 in News EE Virgin Media Sky BT TalkTalk

Loyal customers who stick with their broadband provider end up paying on average 43% more than if they had switched.

Research by Citizens Advice has cast a light on the way the major providers hike their prices once a contract has ended. Customers who choose to keep their existing deal instead of shopping around find themselves paying an average of £113 extra each year in what has been dubbed a "loyalty penalty".

Citizens Advice analysed the cheapest broadband deals from the UK's five largest suppliers. They found that Virgin Media was the only one that did not bump its prices at the end of the initial contract period. The other four saw increases of as much as 67%.

  • BT - the price rises from £24.49 to £40.99 after 12 months. An increase of 67%, amounting to £198 per year.
  • TalkTalk - the price goes from £20 to £25.50 after 24 months. An increase of 28%, or £66 per year.
  • Sky - after 12 months the price rises from £18.99 to £28.99. An increase of 53%, or £120 per year.
  • EE - the price rises from £21 to £28.50 after 18 months. An increase of 36%, amounting to £90 extra per year.
  • Virgin Media - the cheapest deal is £32.25 per month for 12 months. The price doesn't rise at the end of the contract.

The report found that more than a third of customers didn't realise that prices could go up once their contract had ended. It also found that customers stay on the same deal for an average of four years, which ends up costing them as much as £594 extra.

Those over 65 or on lower incomes were significantly more likely to stick with a deal for more 10 years.

Time to switch

The study highlights the fact that it's more important than ever to shop around for the best broadband deal. Our Ofcom-approved price comparison service helps you find the best and cheapest packages available for your postcode.

Switching broadband providers is easier than you might expect. In most cases, your new provider will handle all aspects of the switchover. You should experience no loss of service, and you won't even need to inform your old supplier that you're leaving. Read our guide to switching broadband providers to see how the process works. 

Citizens Advice is calling for greater clarity in how providers advertise their services, and also to inform customers by text when the fixed price comes to an end.

Gillian Guy, chief executive of Citizens Advice, said, “People often choose their broadband deals based on the price that works for them - but our evidence shows that many do not realise the price will rise after the end of the fixed deal. The government has rightly put energy firms on warning for how they treat loyal customers - the actions of broadband firms warrant similar scrutiny. Extra protections for vulnerable consumers are also a must.”

The moral of the story is clear: loyalty doesn't pay. Once your contract is up, find a new provider. There are some incredible deals to be had on both standard and fibre broadband, and if you're lucky you might even bag an awesome free gift at the same time.

So don't delay. Click here to visit our postcode checker and you can start saving money today.

Comments

man using computer

How to avoid BT and Sky price rises - penalty free!

Posted on 2017-02-02 14:19 in News Features Sky BT

BT and Sky have both announced that they're hiking up their prices once again - but you don't have to pay them. Under Ofcom rules, any unexpected price rises mean you can quit your contract early without paying a penalty fee.

BT's price increases are all in the region of an inflation-beating 5-6% on standard and fibre broadband deals. They include:

  • Standard broadband: a £2 per month increase from £33.99 to £35.99 for the "all-in" deal including line rental, as of 2nd April
  • Fibre broadband: a £2.50 per month increase from £39.99 to £42.49 for Infinity 1, and £51.49 to £53.99 for Infinity 2, as of 2nd April
  • BT Sport: will cost £3.50 per month via BT TV from August (it was previously free). Via Sky TV the price goes up from 2nd April by £1.50 per month if you have BT Broadband, or £1 per month if you don't
  • Calls packages: also increasing across the board from 2nd April

Sky's price rises are mostly limited to line rental, but customers on older deals will also see increases:

  • Line rental: up 9% from £17.40 per month to £18.99 from 1st March
  • Older broadband and TV deals: will rise on average just under £3 per month from 1st March. The exact amount will vary depending on what deal you're on

How to cancel your broadband contract without penalty

If you aren't happy about the proposed price increases then you do have options. Ofcom states that you can end a contract without penalty if there's a price rise you weren't warned about when you first signed up.

If you're still within the minimum terms of your contract (eg. you're six months into a 12 month deal), you must tell your provider of your intention to quit within 30 days of being informed of the price rise. Both Sky and BT began informing their customers toward the end of January, so move quickly if you want to switch.

If you're outside the minimum terms of the contract (eg. you signed a 12 month deal 18 months ago), you're free to leave at any time regardless.

Switching broadband providers is likely to be your best option for saving money. The best deals are almost always reserved for new customers. Our postcode checker shows what packages are available in your area.

And what if you're happy with your provider? You can, of course, try haggling. You can sometimes get a better deal if you're willing to enter into a new contract. Even so, it's still worth arming yourself with information on the best broadband deals so you know what you're asking for. And if no offer is forthcoming remember the golden rule of haggling — always be willing to walk away.

Use our postcode checker now to find the best broadband deals in your area. Also take a look at our guide to switching broadband providers. The process has been streamlined recently, and is probably a lot easier than you expect.

Comments

BT Buyers Guide

Can I get BT Broadband?

BT's standard broadband services are available at all UK telephone exchanges (excluding those in Hull) so can be accessed in all but the remotest of rural areas

BT's fibre-optic service, BT Infinity, is available to more than 85% of UK homes — more than 25 million premises — with BT continuing the roll out to more and more areas every month. BT Infinity is based on fibre to the cabinet (FTTC) technology meaning that both your telephone exchange and your street cabinet need to have been upgraded to support fibre before you can sign up to the service. Urban and central areas tend to be activated first. You can check to see if BT Infinity is available in your area with our postcode checker.

Does BT Broadband have a technical advantage or faster installation time?

BT Broadband is provided by BT Retail, which is a separate company from those that administer telephone exchanges, street cabinets and phonelines. As a result, there is no technical advantage over any other provider reselling BT Wholesale Connect; they have to wait in the same queues for Openreach installation or home visit engineers and use the same systems of contact as any other reseller.

BT Broadband are just one of many consumer broadband service providers using BT Wholesale Connect technology. In many areas competiting broadband providers have installed their own equipment in telephone exchanges and may even be able to beat BT's standard broadband speeds.

As British Telecom, BT provided the nationalised telecoms service for the whole of the UK, controlling all telephone exchanges (except those in Hull). Since then British Telecom were split into three companies; BT Wholesale, who sell telecommunications services to phone and broadband suppliers, Openreach, who maintain the technical aspects of the BT infrastructure including phone lines, exchanges and street cabinets; and BT Retail, who sell BT phone and broadband products to consumers. This separation was enforced by the Competition Commission to ensure that BT did not have a monopoly or unfair advantage over other telecommunications companies.

What broadband options are available?

BT provide a wide range of packages catering to different speeds, download restrictions, and associated extras including TV options.

BT also allow you to build your own package on their site by choosing from a range of broadband speeds:

  • BT standard broadband - up to 17Mb download and up to 1Mb upload speed, limited to up to 8Mb down and up to 0.75Mb up in some rural areas
  • BT Infinity 1 fibre-optic broadband - up to 52Mb download speed and up to 9.5Mb upload speed
  • BT Infinity 2 fibre-optic broadband - up to 76Mb download speed and up to 19Mb upload speed

Whether you can enjoy BT's fastest speeds depends on factors like whether your exchange and street cabinet have been upgraded to the latest technology, and how much copper telephone cable there is between your home and the exchange (or the street cabinet for BT Infinity).

For the standard broadband and Infinity 1 packages you can choose whether to have unlimited usage, allowing you to use as much Internet as you like each month, or whether you will pay less and have a download limit. There are a range of limits available with smaller limits usually costing less, although special offers and promotions may apply to make unlimited options more affordable. Infinity 2 is unlimited.

All packages come with free unlimited weekend calls to UK landlines, but this is again flexible, allowing you to extend the option to unlimited anytime calls.

What TV options are available?

You can also combine your broadband and phone service with a TV service by adding BT TV - BT's digital television service - to your package.

BT TV can only be taken with a BT broadband subscription as it uses your connection to stream content which is not available on Freeview. Speeds of 5Mb or more are required to view high definition content, 2Mb or more for standard definition. If your connection falls short of this minimum you won't be able to sign up.

Customers can choose between:

  • BT TV Entertainment Starter - 80 Freeview channels (including 12 in HD), On Demand, Catch up TV, BT Sport, 20 premium channels
  • BT TV Entertainment Plus - 80 Freeview channels (including 12 in HD), On Demand, Catch up TV, BT Sport, 27 premium channels and TV on the Go
  • BT TV Total Entertainment - 80 Freeview channels (including 12 in HD), On Demand, Catch up TV, BT Sport, 50 premium channels and TV on the Go

All BT TV packages come with up to 80 Freeview TV and radio channels, plus access to 7 day catch up TV and on-demand shows. The YouView powered set top box also gives you high definition versions of the 4 main terrestrial TV channels via Freeview HD and allows you to pause and rewind live TV or record your favourite shows for later. You can also access a large library of on demand TV shows, music videos and more, or pay per view blockbuster films.

BT TV's streamed channels and on-demand films and TV shows do not count towards your broadband usage allowance. Viewing rival services like Netflix, Amazon Instant Video or NOW TV will count towards any usage limit you might have on your BT Broadband service, so bear this in mind when deciding between limited or unlimited packages.

Which package should I choose?

It is worth working out what your download needs are in advance as there is no need for you for to pay more than you have to, such as paying for extra bandwidth that you won't need.

At speeds of up to 52Mb, the BT Infinity 1 package offers the fastest potential speeds for basic fibre broadband in the UK (at launch time, at least — it's likely that other providers will upgrade their basic services in due course). This is fast enough for virtually all online activities, including watching BT Sport in Ultra HD, and may now be sufficient for those customers who would have previously been considering the faster Infinity 2 connection.

BT Infinity packages will help prevent slowdown in households with many heavy Internet users, such as student households or those with large families. However, if you're close enough to the telephone exchange, BT Broadband's speeds of up to 17Mb may still be fast enough, allowing you to stream live television or communicate over Skype without encountering problems. You might benefit from faster internet speeds if you do a lot of online gaming, regularly download a lot of large files or stream large amounts TV and films, especially in larger households where more than one person might be doing these things at any one time.

When considering your usage limit, it is worth asking yourself what you use the Internet for, and how often you use it. Those who use the Internet regularly for downloading files, gaming or watching a lot of streaming video (outside of the unmetered BT TV service) will hit a usage limit faster than those who only use the Internet for email, websites and social media, or go online less often. If you can find out your current monthly usage, it will provide a useful estimate for what limit you might need. There is no need to pay for capacity you will not use, but it can also provide peace-of-mind not to worry about if a YouTube video might take you over your limit.

Points to consider before you choose

  • How many people will be using your broadband connection?
  • Are you a heavy downloader, or do you regularly play online games?
  • Will you only watch streamed TV and films on unmetered BT TV or will you also use rival services like Netflix or NOW TV?
  • How heavy is your Internet usage and how often do you use it?
  • Would the expense of the faster speed or larger download capacity be worth it for you?

Compare all BT Broadband packages

I already have Infinity 1, do I automatically get the new, faster speed?

Existing Infinity 1 customers will not be upgraded automatically to the faster speeds, and will continue on their current up to 38Mb service.

You can upgrade by taking out a new contract, but unless you're already getting speeds of 38Mb, or thereabouts, it may not be worth it. For many users the internet speeds they get are limited by physical factors such as their distance from the street cabinet, rather than the speed limits of their chosen broadband service. Thus, upgrading to a faster service will not automatically mean faster internet.

What do I get when I sign-up?

It's always good to know upfront what you'll get when signing up with an ISP so you know what you can enjoy for free, or to budget for any extras you may want.

  • BT Home Hub router - Standard BT Broadband customers will receive a free BT Home Hub 4 802.11n wireless router for their connections, while Infinity customers get the enhanced Smart Hub which is supercharged for fibre with 802.11ac Wi-Fi and uses smart techology to get faster Wi-Fi connections to more rooms in your home that any other major broadband providers' hubs. These routers use dual-band technology to reduce wireless interference and come with an easy online set-up.
  • BT Cloud storage - BT Broadband comes with access to BT Cloud, which allows you to store your files online. This enables you to have a back-up of important documents on your devices so that you do not lose them if something happens to that device. You can also access BT Cloud from anywhere if you have an account, which makes it easy to transfer and share files. The unlimited packages come with either 100GB or a massive 500GB, depending on which you choose. Cloud storage is an optional extra on the limited packages.
  • Internet security - All of BT's unlimited broadband packages come bundled with BT NetProtect Plus online security with McAfee. Up to 7 PCs and Macs can be protected through firewalls, anti-virus and anti-spyware software, and site rating systems. The cheaper BT Broadband deals with limited data allowances can still get BT NetProtect Plus for a small extra cost. BT Family Protection is also available to restrict and monitor children’s internet usage, including blocking access to social media and setting time limits.
  • SmartTalk - BT provide a SmartTalk app that BT Broadband users can use. This allows you to use up to 5 smartphones for landline calls through your router, potentially saving a lot of money on expensive mobile calls, and even allowing you to use your landline while abroad with a wi-fi connection. No other provider offers this option.
  • BT Sport - You don’t have to be a BT TV subscriber to have access to BT Sport. If you are a BT Broadband customer then you can use the BT Sport app or the online player to access BT Sport Lite for free or you can pay £6 extra per month for the BT Sport Pack and the exclusive sports coverage they provide, including live UEFA football, 38 Barclays Premier League matches and all Aviva Premiership Rugby matches. You can also add BT Sport to your existing Sky TV service for only £6 per month.

What are the benefits of BT Broadband?

The benefits offered by an ISP may be what seals the deal in your decision to buy a package from them.

  • Very fast basic fibre - BT's cheapest Infinity 1 fibre cabinets offer download speeds of up to 52Mb while most competitors limit basic fibre to only up to 38Mb. If you're close enough to your street cabinet to get the boost then the extra 14Mb could make a significant difference.
  • Wi-fi access points - All BT Broadband customers benefit from free unlimited broadband access even when not at home through free access to BT Wi-fi (formerly BT FON/BT Openzone), the world’s largest wi-fi network with over 5 million wi-fi hotspots across the UK. This lets you access the internet without the restrictions of mobile broadband from coffee shops, airports, high streets, stations, and many more places - including international hotspots.
  • Free technical support - BT Broadband provide many support options for when things go wrong. Customers can call their helpline for free from their landlines at any time of day, and access hundreds of free online guides complete with videos. BT Broadband also maintain a social media presence through forums, Twitter and YouTube, helping you solve any problems that may occur.
  • Free installation for BT Infinity 2 - BT Infinity 2 customers can get their fibre broadband installed at no extra cost.
  • Available in rural areas - BT offer the same prices at all telephone exchanges, making BT a good choice for those living in rural and remote areas where choices may be limited. In areas where Virgin cable TV isn't available, BT TV may be a good alternative to Sky.
  • Super Hub for BT Infinity - Supercharged for fibre with the very latest 802.11ac advanced wireless networking technology, BT claims their smart techology makes the Smart Hub better than any major broadband provider's latest hub at getting faster connections into more rooms of your home.
  • BT Sport Pack - If you're a sports fan and intend to sign up for BT Sport in order to see UEFA Championship, Premiere League Football, FA Cup, Rugby etc matches, it can be very attractive to switch to BT TV and get these channels for free, or to switch to BT Broadband and get them through the app or your existing Sky TV package for only £6 per month.
  • No satellite dish needed for TV - If you don't want or aren't able to install a satellite dish for your home, BT TV is available using your standard Freeview aerial and BT broadband connection.

What are the drawbacks of BT Broadband?

Let's face it, not everything can be perfect, and even the best deals may have a downside.

  • Costs - BT Broadband is rarely the cheapest option for all the services they provide, however this is made up for by BT providing a wider range of included extras than many other providers.
  • Must take BT phone and line rental - BT Broadband is only offered bundled with BT phone services, you can't take your line rental or call plan from someone else, or sign up with broadband from BT without having a phoneline. BT line rental tends to be priced higher than many other providers.
  • No short contracts - BT’s contracts are for 12 months, which requires a greater degree of commitment and less flexibility than other providers that offer shorter contracts. Those looking for one month contracts may be better off looking elsewhere. However, as BT Broadband is available at all BT telephone exchanges, you're unlikely to find yourself moving home to an area with no BT Broadband service at all, which can happen with some providers.
  • Smart Hub only standard on Infinity - If you want the lastest and greatest router technology, capable of getting faster connections into the 'dead spots' in your home, you only get the BT Smart Hub inclusive with BT Infinity. If you're a standard broadband customer then you get the previous generation BT Home Hub 4 or you need to pay an extra £50 to get the Smart Hub.
  • Complaint levels - The communications regulator Ofcom keeps track of the customer complaint levels of for broadband and TV services. The Ofcom complaint figures for late 2015 show that while BT had the third lowest level of complaints among the major broadband provders, it was still well above the industry average. It also the highest level of complaints for pay TV, nearly four times the industry average.
Broadband.co.uk