Frustrating at times but impossible to live without, web access is too vital to settle for sub-standard service. PC Advisor analyses what 6,500 of you had to say about your broadband experiences, which ISPs are best, and how to get cheaper broadband.
When mobile operator Orange bought out French ISP Wanadoo, there was much uproar. Wanadoo had proved a popular ISP in the UK, having been quick to roll out half-decent broadband speeds of 2Mbps or so.
The changeover from Wanadoo to Orange wasn’t a happy one, as previous PC Advisor surveys showed. Orange customers continue to report issues with the reliability and connection speeds of their service, with only middling scores for the speeds achieved when customers can get online. As a result, only 64 percent of respondents said they’d recommend Orange as an ISP.
Surprisingly, given Orange’s combined mobile broadband with fixed-line broadband offerings, a scant 11 percent of survey respondents said they have either a 3G dongle or 3G smartphone with Orange. On the other hand, almost 20 percent bundle their broadband with their mobile phone contract.
Satisfaction ratings for the connection speeds achieved were about average and Orange put in a fairly middling showing overall.
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Those with good memories may remember ‘Baywatch’ star David Hasselhoff briefly fronting the marketing campaign for Pipex. Not long after, the Chilterns-based ISP (which also owns business broadband provider Nildram) was bought out by Tiscali. These days, Pipex trades as a small business broadband company offering ADSL2+ connections that you can sign up to for as little as three months. Given the number of times flexible contracts came up as a desirable feature for an ISP to offer, this is a sound idea.
Unfortunately, our survey shows that Pipex has a lot of customers who have been with it for several years but whose expectations aren’t being met terribly well. Talk Talk has much ground to make up if it’s to capitalise on the enlarged customer base it’s gained by buying out Pipex.
NEXT: Plusnet & Sky Broadband >>
Broadband Survey 2009 index:
- PC Advisor readers' verdict on Broadband Britain
- Our survey says…
- ISP reviews: AOL & Be Broadband
- ISP reviews: BT & BT Yahoo
- ISP reviews: Demon & O2
- ISP reviews: Orange & Pipex
- ISP reviews: Plusnet & Sky Broadband
- ISP reviews: Talk Talk & Tiscali
- ISP reviews: Virgin Media & Zen Internet
- Mobile broadband
- Better broadband for all
- Better broadband, shaping up
- Behind the scenes: a broadband call centre
Survey sponsored by Broadband Genie