SSE Broadband Buyers Guide

Broadband and phone from a renewable electricity and gas supplier

  • Low priced phone and broadband services
  • Zero price hikes during the 18 month contract
  • Happiness guarantee - cancel without penalty in the first 60 days
  • Available outside of most providers' low cost areas
  • Same low prices wherever you live
  • No upfront costs in most cases

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SSE Unlimited Fibre Broadband with Line Rental
£22.00 for 18 months
£33.00 thereafter

No upfront cost

  • 18 months reduced fixed price
  • 35Mb average download speed
  • 9Mb average upload speed!
  • Unlimited monthly allowance
  • 60-Day Happiness Guarantee
  • Only pay for the calls you use
  • No activation fee
  • 18 month contract

Buy now

SSE Unlimited Fibre Plus with Line Rental
£26.00 for 18 months
£38.00 thereafter

No upfront cost

  • 18 months reduced fixed price
  • 63Mb average download speed
  • 17Mb average upload speed!
  • Unlimited monthly allowance
  • 60-Day Happiness Guarantee
  • Only pay for the calls you use
  • No activation fee
  • 18 month contract

Buy now

Please note, customers taking out phone & broadband with SSE may be charged an upfront cost for their phone line. If customers don't have a phone line they will need to pay a 'New line provision' charge of £60. If customers need a 'LLU line conversion' to take SSE's phone and broadband service there will be a charge of £36.91.

Reasons to choose SSE

  • Affordable - among the cheapest providers in the UK
  • Phone bundles - choose from a range of call plans, or just pay for what you use
  • High end router - all broadband users get a free Technicolor DWA0120 router with fast performance, strong signal and parental controls
  • Fixed price - SSE guarantees zero price hikes during the 18 month contract term
  • Happiness guarantee - you can cancel your SSE deal within 60 days without penalty if you aren't happy with it
  • No upfront costs - SSE broadband comes without any activation or shipping costs (as long as you've got an LLU phone line installed)
  • 18 months fixed price plans - only changes to VAT or a similar taxes can increase it

Possible downsides

  • No short contracts - all packages are on an 18 month contract
  • Limited extras - the free router is among a handful of free extras
  • Budget provider - may prioritise low price over other considerations

Features at a glance

  • Download speeds average at 35Mb for Fibre and 63Mb for Fibre Plus

  • 18 month contracts, with fixed price guarantee, barring changes to VAT or another relevant tax or levy

  • Unlimited monthly usage, traffic management and fair usage applies

  • Free activation; £60 for new line installation or a £36.91 LLU line conversion charge may apply

  • Customer support by local rate phone or email open 8am to 8pm on weekdays, 8am to 2pm on Saturday, closed Sundays

  • High-performance 802.11ac wireless router using dual 2.4GHz and 5GHz frequencies band steered together for greater stability

  • Only pay for the calls you use on standard bundles◊, Anytime available for an extra fee

  • SSE Broadband have published a Traffic Management Policy

3 stars
  satisfaction rating based on 418 customer ratings since 2019-01-27. See more SSE customer ratings and reviews.

Details last checked on 2020-01-20

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 SSE.

Customer Ratings Summary

  • Satisfaction
    3 stars
  • Customer Service
    3.2 stars
  • Speed
    2.7 stars
  • Reliability
    2.8 stars

Based on 418 customer ratings since 2019-01-27

Show all time ratings

Add your own review of SSE

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
Due to transfer to SSE on 27 the December but still no connection ( 18th January ). Long waits on phone - 45 mins to an hour. No proper explanations or time frame for start of service. Utterly dire . Avoid at all costs . Back to Vodafone for me .
  • Satisfaction
    1 star
  • Customer Service
    1 star
  • Speed
    1 star
  • Reliability
    1 star
Lancaster SSE  
If I could give zero stars that would be too many. Takes on average 40 mins to answer the phone lines. I switched in September and still awaiting my phone number in Jan 2020.

Avoid this provider at all costs as they simply haven’t a clue
  • Satisfaction
    1 star
  • Customer Service
    1 star
  • Speed
    1 star
  • Reliability
    1 star
Wigan SSE  
Absolutely appaling SSE! Keeps dropping off although I am in area of at least 12Mbps. The connection to internet with them is like a yo-yo. On-Off permanently. Imagine doing on-line banking using these useless people !
My advice to everyone. Discard this company. They don't know what are they doing.
  • Satisfaction
    1 star
  • Customer Service
    1 star
  • Speed
    1 star
  • Reliability
    1 star
Sutton SSE  
Internet is constantly going on and off at any random moment and restarting itself. Internet also switches off whenever a device connects to it. Customer service only open 8-8. Would not recommend at all! Awful internet connection.
  • Satisfaction
    1 star
  • Customer Service
    3 stars
  • Speed
    1 star
  • Reliability
    1 star
Mansfield SSE  
I’ve been with SSE since April 2018 when I relocated from Yorkshire. I cannot fault the service I’ve received.
I constantly achieve the average speeds advertised and am on a rolling monthly contract so if I wanted to (which I don’t) I could cancel with no termination fee.
There have been occasional outages, but these were rare and beyond SSE’s control as large geographical areas were affected at the time.
I’ve always got through to customer services without too long a wait and have found them to be very courteous and helpful, on the rare occasions that I’ve had contact them.
I live in a smallish village in Cumbria so I’m not sure if this is why I get such good service, compared to bigger conurbations where demand for internet services may be higher.
WiFi coverage is good with just 2 blind spots in a 4 bedroomed detached house.
Value for money has always been good.
I did however change the DNS settings on my smartblu-ray player as I began to have problems streaming when using SSE’s DNS address, I expect they were traffic managing, however my service has recently been upgraded to truly unlimited with no traffic management.
I’ve done regular comparisons with other providers but haven’t changed because the costs savings would be minimal and why risk going with another provider when I’ve received such a good service?!
  • Satisfaction
    5 stars
  • Customer Service
    5 stars
  • Speed
    5 stars
  • Reliability
    4 stars
Cumbria SSE  
Awful customer service and broadband is not reliable. After multiple issues we decided to cancel earlier. There is a waiver for the cancellation fee if you’re not happy with the service but they refused to waive the fee as they felt they hadn’t be given a chance to correct the issues. This was after multiple issues. When I checked the internet speed and noticed it was consistently about 1 third of what we’d been paying for I decided enough was enough. So had to pay £172 to cancel a service I wasn’t receiving. Avoid like the plague.
  • Satisfaction
    1 star
  • Customer Service
    1 star
  • Speed
    1 star
  • Reliability
    1 star
Cambridge SSE  
Broadband reliability is awful. Mine has been down for five days. The wait time to contact customer support is at least forty minutes and often I’m on hold for over an hour. When I finally get through they usually refer me to their specialist team who promise to contact me later. They never do (I’m beginning to believe they don’t exist). The last time I managed to get through I was told another THREE days that will mean no internet for EIGHT days. If you need reliable internet AVOID SSE
  • Satisfaction
    1 star
  • Customer Service
    1 star
  • Speed
    3 stars
  • Reliability
    1 star
Bordon Hampshire SSE  
Will never recommend
very poor service
broadband suddenly went off for few days and no satisfactory answer from the customer service.
Unable to fix the problem.
Hopelesss service
waste of money and time
  • Satisfaction
    1 star
  • Customer Service
    1 star
  • Speed
    1 star
  • Reliability
    1 star
ALTRINCHAM HALE SSE  
Cant fault the actually broadband as ive never had any faults. Mine starts with me and possibly others being ripped off.
Started with moving house,everything went fine.. Smooth changeover, the lot.
until a few months later i rang up to upgrade my broadband.. slightly slower where I live now.
waiting 45 minutes to get through as this is always the case they tell me im already on their fastest speeds.. erm.. obviously not... They dug into it and apparently my package got changed with the house move by who ever done it without notifying me and doing a full change, i.e contract ect so i was never aware. He sneakily upgraded the package so i was getting charged more (probably for his commission) but never actually put it through proper so i never actually got the higher speeds just paid more over the year. Constantly got told I would get a call off sse which never happened. Ive been ringing for the last 2 weeks nearly everyday for an update as to whats happening bearing in mind there is always a 30-1 hour hold times on the phone to be told nothing other than "its being processed". If you've been ripping a customer off that's been with you for a long time you prioritize that problem especially when you've ripped them off instead of worrying about signing up new people for you to potentially do the same to them.
  • Satisfaction
    1 star
  • Customer Service
    1 star
  • Speed
    3 stars
  • Reliability
    5 stars
Manchester SSE  
Avoid!!! worst broadband provider ever frequent speeds of less than 6mps and when we complained told we were getting 11 mbps which was a total joke as we tested speed hundreds of times and never had any where near this.After we complained speeds got worse on average 4.5 mbps and now we are leaving the internet is far far worse/ unuseable if I could give a minus star rating I would avoid at all cost.
  • Satisfaction
    1 star
  • Customer Service
    1 star
  • Speed
    1 star
  • Reliability
    1 star
Taunton SSE  

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The reviews published on this page are those of the individual authors who have warrantied that they abide by our review guidelines. Reviews are not the opinion of Broadband.co.uk.

SSE Broadband Buyers Guide - Is SSE right for you?

Can I get SSE?

SSE are best known as an energy provider but their broadband services are available to everyone. You don't need to be an energy customer, and you also don't need to be located in the regions covered by their energy services.

SSE broadband is available wherever there's a BT telephone exchange. In some areas SSE may make savings by using their own equipment installed in the BT telephone exchange, but these savings are shared with all customers. The same standard broadband prices and features are available wherever you live.

SSE Fibre to the cabinet services are also available, to get these both your exchange and street cabinet must have been upgraded to support fibre. This covers more than 95% of UK homes.

You can find out which SSE Broadband products are available where you live with our postcode checker.

What packages are available?

SSE offer standard ADSL and Fibre broadband packages:

  • SSE Unlmited Fibre - the entry level fibre deal with average speeds of 35Mb
  • SSE Fibre Plus - the fastest fibre broadband deal with average speeds of 63Mb

In all cases, the packages are on 18 month fixed price contracts and come with line rental. If you don't have an Openreach (BT exchange) telephone line already you'll need to pay to have one installed, this costs an additional £60 one off charge. In areas where SSE install their own equipment in telephone exchanges (LLU), you may be liable for a £36.91 one-off line conversion charge depending on the provider you're switching from.

Under the default package you pay only for landline phone calls that you make, but if you use your phone a lot you can add one of three calls packages◊. These are for Evening & Weekend Calls, Anytime Calls (calls to all UK landline and mobile numbers apart from 09 numbers), and Anytime Plus, which adds calls to 35 countries.

The deals offer unlimited usage rather than being 'truly unlimited'. This means that you can download and upload as much as you like. Although SSE have a traffic management policy in place to slow down connections making excessive use of the services, this is unlikely to affect most people. The policy primarily targets peer-to-peer file sharing traffic, and prioritises essential traffic like video calls, gaming and general browsing.

The speed available to you will vary based on various factors including the time of day (speeds are likely to be slower at peak times like evenings when lots of people are online), the wiring in your home, and the distance from your nearest telephone exchange or cabinet, with speeds decreasing the further away you are. You can find out how close you are to your nearest exchange by using our postcode checker.

Which package should I choose?

If you're interested in a budget provider like SSE, it's likely that cost effectiveness and value for money are important factors to you.

The SSE packages are largely no-frills offerings without much in the way of extras to entice you. This means that your main choice will be based on what speed of broadband you need.

Of the three packages that SSE offer, Unlimited Broadband is the slowest and most affordable. With an average speed of 11Mb it's good enough for casual use, preferably in smaller households. If your usage doesn't extend much beyond shopping, browsing and Facebooking then it should be plenty. It should also be able to handle streaming of services like Netflix or NOW TV on one device, but if you need more it may struggle.

That said, do remember that the quoted 11Mb speed is only an average, so there's no guarantee that's what you'll get. Make sure you get a speed estimate before you sign up (and if it's less than, say, 6Mb then streaming might be off the table).

If you have a larger or more demanding household, or if you'd just prefer a faster service, then you should go for one of the fibre options. The middle Ultimate Fibre deal should be fast enough to allow several people to stream TV, play online games, or download large files at the same time. The faster Plus plan is the best choice for the most demanding households who live their lives online.

Again, you should get a speed estimate before you make your choice. If you're looking at the top-end Ultimate Fibre Plus plan but your estimate shows you won't get speeds much better than you could get on the middle deal, it might not be worth paying the extra money.

In all cases, keep an eye on any upfront fees that might be added if you don't have a BT line or are in an area where SSE have installed their own equipment in the nearest telephone exchange.

For each plan there's the choice to add a calls package. Your decision here depends simply on whether you make many landline calls, and when you make them. If you prefer to use your mobile then you might be better off sticking with the default option of just paying for calls as and when you make them.

Points to consider before you choose

  • Is low price the most important factor for you?
  • Is having the best, reliable high-performance wireless router important to you?
  • How often do you use your landline to make calls and at what times of day?
  • Are you a heavy user of streaming video or a heavy downloader?
  • Would you prefer a provider that can offer extras like a premium TV service as part of the same bundle?
  • Do you need the higher speeds offered by a fibre connection and is your exchange and street cabinet set up to support this?

Compare all SSE deals

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.

  • Reliable wireless router - SSE Broadband customers receive a free, easy to set up, wireless router when they sign up to help manage their connection. The Technicolor DWA0120 high-performance router, with its strong signal, security and transfer speeds, uses both 2.4GHz and 5GHz frequency with band steering technology for optimal performance. You can even share media content with your connected devices via a USB drive.
  • SSE Rewards - Sign up to SSE broadband and you'll get access to their Rewards scheme. This gives you benefits for events at The SSE Arena, Wembley and The SSE Hydro in Glasgow, including access to tickets before they go on general sale, upgrades to SSE lounges, and competitions and prize draws.

What are the benefits of SSE?

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

  • Wide coverage - SSE broadband is available anywhere there's a BT telephone exchange. You don't need to be an SSE energy customer to sign up.
  • Fixed price promise - One of SSE’s best selling points is their fixed price guarantee. Only changes to VAT or another relevant tax or levy can increase the monthly cost within that period.
  • 60-day Happiness Guarantee - If you aren't happy with any part of your deal, and SSE have been unable to fix the problem, you can leave without penalty in your first 60 days.
  • Free connection - There are no connection charges or delivery fees for most customers. The exceptions are if you need to have a BT line installed, or if you're in one of SSE's LLU areas where you may be liable to pay a one-off conversion charge should you be switching from a non-LLU provider.

What are the drawbacks of SSE?

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

  • Few extras - SSE offer a free router and a Rewards scheme with their broadband packages, but lack the extra incentives many other providers offer. However, this more 'no frills' approach means they are able to concentrate more on the provision of your broadband and phone services.
  • No short contracts - All of SSE's packages are on 18 month contracts.
  • Limited information - There's very little detailed information on the SSE website about telephone support opening hours. We would usually recommend that customers research these before signing up to a provider, though SSE should provide you with information about what speeds your line can support during the sign-up process.

◊ Inclusive Talk calls are for (i) local and national numbers beginning 01, 02 and 03 and (ii) 0845 & 0870 numbers. Excludes indirect access numbers and dial-up internet access. Inclusive calls are free up to 70 minutes. Any call duration over 70 minutes will be charged. Redial before 70 minutes to avoid charges. Fair use policy applies - maximum 1,000 minutes or 150 calls a month; whichever you reach first. If either of these limits is exceeded SSE will charge for these calls at the equivalent rate for non-inclusive periods. Daytime calls mean from 7am to 7pm Monday to Friday; Evening calls before 7am and after 7pm Monday to Friday; Weekend calls midnight Friday to midnight Sunday. For more information about call charges, see the Call Charges and Tariff Information PDF available from SSE product pages.

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