italk Buyers Guide
Can I get italk Broadband?
italk Broadband uses the Openreach network to provide fibre to customers, so is available to anyone in fibre-enabled areas. They primarily use Vodafone's network to provide standard broadband, which covers some 16 million premises, or roughly 60% of the country. If you aren't within the coverage area you won't be able to get italk.
What packages are available?
italk offer three broadband packages, including a standard broadband service.
The company also offers two fibre deals, and you can add a range of call packages depending on your needs.
- Unlimited Broadband - unlimited standard broadband, with speeds averaging 10mb
- Unlimited Fibre - the entry level fibre deal, offering average download speeds of 35mb and impressive 9mb upload speeds, completely unlimited
- Unlimited Superfast Fibre - italk's fastest package, with 53mb average download speeds and 18mb upload speeds, completely unlimited
All of these packages come on a 24 month fixed price deal. While this is a long term commitment, the promise of no mid-contract price rises does give you the security of knowing exactly what you'll be paying for the next two years. There's also no activation fee.
You can add a call package to your broadband deal if you need one. Your options are for unlimited Anytime Calls, unlimited Evening & Weekend Calls, or cheap International Calls priced at 3p per minute for 21 countries. If you don't need a calls bundle you'll only pay for the calls you make.
Remember, though, that these are only the average speeds achieved across all of italk's users - it isn't a guarantee of what speed you'll get. For every customer that achieves 10mb or faster, there will be a similar number that get something slower. italk does give you a speed estimate before you sign up, so you know what you performance level you can expect.
Which package should I choose?
The package that's right for you depends on your needs, and how many people there are in your household.
For many households, fibre broadband is a must. This will enable you to stream TV over Netflix or BBC iPlayer, or download on demand movies from Sky, for example. It'll also allow several people to watch, browse, game, and work at the same time without interruption.
The Unlimited Fibre package offers good average download and upload speeds, so should be fine for most households. For the most demanding users, the Superfast option is a better bet.
The Unlimited Broadband package is for smaller households with lower internet needs. It'll allow TV streaming for one person, plus general use like web and social media.
Points to consider before you choose
- How many people in your house will be using the internet at the same time?
- Are you willing (and able) to commit to a two year deal?
- Are you in an italk coverage area?
- Do you want extras, like premium TV channels?
- Do you make lots of landline calls and would benefit from an inclusive calls package?
What do I get when I sign up?
It's important to know what else you get when you sign up. This lets you budget for any extras you may need to add yourself.
italk is a simple, no-nonsense service, so you don't get much in the way of extras. The essentials are covered, though:
- Free router - You can get connected straight away with a free wireless router worth £99.
- Customer support - Solve any problems quickly through italk's free customer support service. It's available 9am to 7pm on weekdays, and 9am to 5:30pm on Saturday. You can also send an email and request a callback.
- Pay as you go calls - Line rental is included, and call bundles are entirely optional. Under the basic service you only need to pay for the calls you make.
What are the benefits of italk Broadband?
Here are the main reasons why you should consider signing up to italk Broadband.
- No price rises - All packages come with a fixed price guarantee. The price when you sign up is the price you'll pay for the entire length of your two year contract.
- No setup fees or hidden costs - You don't have to pay any extra fees to get your service set up and running, and there aren't any other hidden costs that will spring up and surprise you, either.
- UK based customer service - Customer service is based in the UK and is available over the phone from Monday to Saturday, or via email. You can even request a callback so the company will contact you at a more convenient time.
- Free router - You'll receive a free router worth £99 when you sign up.
- Truly unlimited service - italk's three broadband packages are fully unlimited. You won't need to ration your usage, and you won't be artifically slowed down during peak hours (although speeds do still naturally vary depending on the time of day and how busy the network is).
- Fast uploads - The fibre packages both offer impressive average upload speeds.
What are the drawbacks to italk Broadband?
Like the sound of italk? Here are some downsides to the service you need to know about before you sign up.
- Long contracts - The contract length is two years on all of the broadband packages. There are no short term contracts available, so it may not be ideal for students or anyone in a short term let. If you prefer something shorter you should take a look at some of the other providers available in your region.
- Limited support hours - Customer service hours are limited to 9am to 7pm on weekdays, and 9am to 5:30pm on Saturday. It's not available at all on Sunday.
- Few extras - This no frills services comes with no real extras beyond the wireless router.
- No TV options - Want to watch some premium TV channels? You'll need to get them separately from a different provider.
- Basic router - The router is an older 802.11n model. While this is okay if you're reasonably close, you might find that your interent speeds slow down the further you get away from where the router is positioned.
- Not many reviews - You can get reassurance from other people's experiences of a provider. At the moment, italk has very few customer reviews you to check. Given the legnth of the contract required, this is something you may wish to factor in to you decision.