SSE Broadband Buyers Guide

Broadband and phone from a renewable electricity and gas supplier

  • Low priced phone and broadband services
  • 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 Broadband with Line Rental
£18.00 for 18 months
£28.00 thereafter

No upfront cost

  • 18 months reduced price!
  • Unlimited monthly allowance
  • 60-Day Happiness Guarantee
  • 11Mb average download speed
  • 18 months free subscription to Internet Security Suite
  • Only pay for the calls you use
  • No activation fee
  • 18 month contract

Buy now

SSE Unlimited Fibre Broadband with Line Rental
£23.00 for 18 months
£33.00 thereafter

No upfront cost

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

Buy now

SSE Unlimited Fibre Plus with Line Rental
£28.00 for 18 months
£38.00 thereafter

No upfront cost

  • 18 months reduced price!
  • 63Mb average download speed
  • 17Mb average upload speed!
  • Unlimited monthly allowance
  • 60-Day Happiness Guarantee
  • 18 months Internet Security Suite
  • 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
  • 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 and security suite are among a handful of free extras
  • Budget provider - may prioritise low price over other considerations

Features at a glance

  • Download speeds average at 11Mb for standard broadband, 35Mb for Fibre and 63Mb for Fibre Plus

  • 18 month contracts, with fixed price guarantee

  • 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

  • SSE Internet Security Suite free for 18 months†

  • 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

  • Peer to peer and similar traffic may be limited during peak times to ensure priority is given to other traffic and not slow down other customers

3.1 stars
  satisfaction rating based on 463 customer ratings since 2018-05-19. See more SSE customer ratings and reviews.

Details last checked on 2019-05-15

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
    3.1 stars
  • Customer Service
    3.5 stars
  • Speed
    2.8 stars
  • Reliability
    3 stars

Based on 463 customer ratings since 2018-05-19

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
To anybody thinking about joining SSE broadband have a read of this and you will never consider using them again.

Nothing but problems ever since i ordered from them. Next door neighbours phone line was changed to SSE instead of my own line , took them 2-3 months to figure out what had even went wrong and finally get connected even after i had mentioned to them what the problem could be the adsvisor knew better than me and said the engineer would sort it out. Engineer never arrived twice , he turned up at the house the first time and said that he knocked and there was no answer so he left , i was told i would be provided with photographic evidence that he actually arrived at the right door but this was never provided , the second time he was given my mobile number to call me when he was outside but once again never called and just left. 2 days taken off work for nothing , not that anyone from SSE cared.

The next issue was my connection going on and off consistently about 20-30 times a day ruining whatever work i had to complete that day aswell as games and music i had been watching. For some reason i was advised to call the faults line 12 midnight by an advisor , when i rang up the automated line said i was in a Q to hold on and that my call would be dealt with very shortly , i waited on the line all night expecting for someone to answer and sort my connection out but nothing. The automated line told me to wait in the Q for an advisor even though the line was infact closed and nobody was there until 6am , another £20 vodafone goodybag wasted based on an SSE advisors advice.

Obviously a complaint had already been made by this point and next up was the manager dealing with the complaint Rachel from SSE. On initial contact she told me everything would be investigated properly and compensated accordingly. A previous advisor mentioned something to do with a connection fee of £60 being added to the bill as a engineer had to visit .When i spoke to Rachel an arguement took place and i explained that if i had to pay the fee after all the issues that i wouldnt continue with SSE. She assured me i didnt have to pay any fees and the previous advisor was incorrect. She took no responsibility for any of the previous issues raised apart from the automated line complaint .A month later i checked my bill online and what do you know a £60 connection fee charge added to the bill , i rang straight up to try n speak with Rachel , she wasnt availiable and hasnt been ever since that moment and along with that she pretended as if none of what she said previously had even took place!
  • Satisfaction
    1 star
  • Customer Service
    1 star
  • Speed
    3 stars
  • Reliability
    1 star
Consett SSE  
My internet connection would regularly drop out 5-10 times a week. Usually for 1-10 minute periods. While SSE customer service was excellent, the issue clearly lies in-house as BT never found a fault with the line. Perhaps another good example of an initially excellent provider (PlusNet) getting too bloated and not upgrading their service to cope with it.

Incidentally, switched to a competitor and haven't had a single disconnect in over a month.
  • Satisfaction
    2 stars
  • Customer Service
    5 stars
  • Speed
    5 stars
  • Reliability
    1 star
Birmingham SSE  
I have been an SSE customer for over a year now. The broadband package has been reliable, the speed as promised. I am most impressed with their customer service. Every time I contacted them whether to ask a question regarding my account or to switch tariff- I could not fault their professionalism nor the speed with which they resolve anything. I contacted them today after receiving a letter informing me that the package price will increase next month as my 1 year contract is due to be renewed.I asked to switch to another deal-lower than what I pay now and with the same benefits, which was immediately processed, no questions asked, no trying to sell any other products I might not want or wish to listen to an extensive sale 'pitch'. Simple and forward, 2 minutes phone call with a very friendly and professional call handler. I highly recommend this provider. Thank you
  • Satisfaction
    5 stars
  • Customer Service
    5 stars
  • Speed
    4 stars
  • Reliability
    5 stars
Edinburgh SSE  
Only recently joined them. So far, so good. Kept my number and transferred from TalkTalk.
I am paying for 35MB speed and after 4 days the speed is 33MB (highest it has ever been with any provider). 10 days on and it is still stable.
Customer service is easy to get through and always speak to someone in the UK.
I hope the service stays the way it is, I have had far too many poor experience from other providers in the past so still a bit apprehensive.
  • Satisfaction
    4 stars
  • Customer Service
    5 stars
  • Speed
    5 stars
  • Reliability
    5 stars
Sheffield SSE  
So many huge drop offs in the evenings - from a promised 30Mb to 2-5Mb - with a family of 5 it's just rubbish. Counting down until I can change.
  • Satisfaction
    1 star
  • Customer Service
    1 star
  • Speed
    1 star
  • Reliability
    1 star
Bath SSE  
Really happy with my are fibre broadband package had no problems with it at all excellent customer service changed over to see broadband and home phone from Plusnet after terrible service also got cheap deal for 18 months also changed my gas and electricity supply over to see so all my managed by one company who look after the customers glad I changed to sse highly recommend them
  • Satisfaction
    5 stars
  • Customer Service
    5 stars
  • Speed
    5 stars
  • Reliability
    5 stars
Manchester SSE  
It just didn't deliver as promised, though they tried to resolve it I just couldn't carry on with the slowness of the broadband. That may be down to the Bt line in or down to sse, I don't know. I have a better connection using the tether on my mobile data bundle..
  • Satisfaction
    3 stars
  • Customer Service
    3 stars
  • Speed
    1 star
  • Reliability
    1 star
Gosport SSE  
The worst broadband experience I ever had. I have tried many : talk talk, BT, plus net, virgin, SKY during more than 20 years. Unfortunately SSE are by far the worst. My games are continually streaming even if no one else is on the WiFi, I am in a town with limited choices of providers at the present but I had BT which was great but due to the monthly package SSE offered I decided to go with them, mistake, wrong choice. I will soon switch back after 5 months been with SSE.
  • Satisfaction
    2 stars
  • Customer Service
    4 stars
  • Speed
    1 star
  • Reliability
    2 stars
Bothwell SSE  
Ok so in general I would probably recommend, I’ve got Fibre up to 35mbps and although it is fast the only problem is it’s not very reliable if you demand a lot from your broadband. I will average speeds of about 26mbps but it can regularly drop to about 19mbps but often as low as 9mbps; this would be fine if I didn’t require decent speeds all the time but a lot of reboots are needed to keep speeds up. All in all if you only use your broadband casually to watch Netflix etc I’d say it’s great but if you need it for more demanding things I’d probably steer clear.
  • Satisfaction
    3 stars
  • Customer Service
    4 stars
  • Speed
    3 stars
  • Reliability
    2 stars
Shoreham-by-Sea SSE  
The user name they sent with the package did not even work and we could not logon to the account to change or do anything on the first day.
What a crap service on day 1.
Might be worth going with a more reputable one as it seems their broadband service matches their rubbish energy services.
  • Satisfaction
    1 star
  • Customer Service
    1 star
  • Speed
    3 stars
  • Reliability
    3 stars
Johnson 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 Broadband - standard broadband with average speeds of 11Mb
  • 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 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.
  • SSE Security Suite† - The SSE Internet Security Suite includes antivirus, firewall and parental controls, free during the 18 months of your contract, then an extra £2 per month. Users must download the application to receive these benefits, the subscription may be cancelled at any time.

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, Internet security software 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 and the typical ADSL headline speeds. 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.

† Internet security suite includes antivirus, firewall and parental controls to restrict internet access to minors. Customers have to pro-actively download the application to benefit from these features. Subscription can be cancelled any time by contacting SSE's customer service line. After the 18 month initial term, the subscription price is £2 per month.

◊ 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.

Broadband.co.uk