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You’re probably looking for the best fibre broadband offers if you’re looking for broadband service.
Fibre-optic broadband is the most popular type of broadband connection in the UK, giving significantly faster speeds and a more dependable connection than traditional copper-based broadband.
But what exactly is fibre broadband, and how does it differ from other forms of internet access? Here’s everything you need to know when comparing fibre broadband services, from internet speed to availability in your area, monthly price to intriguing add-ons.
|Direct Save Telecom
The key distinction between ordinary ADSL and fibre broadband is the internet speed available.
Most ADSL broadband connections will provide typical download rates of roughly 10Mbps, though this can vary greatly depending on the infrastructure used and other factors.
Many factors can affect the ADSL speed you receive, including the line you’re connected to, your distance from your street cabinet, and how many people in your neighborhood are using the internet at the same time. In actuality, depending on your conditions, you could receive anything from 16Mbps to less than 1Mbps.
Most fibre broadband connections, on the other hand, start at around 30Mbps, which is three times quicker than traditional broadband. They also employ more durable technology, resulting in a more stable connection that does not fluctuate in speed as much.
It’s also worth noting that, at their lowest speeds, fibre internet packages are often the same, if not cheaper, than many ADSL pricing these days – especially if you’re past your initial fixed-term contract. As a result, you may be able to purchase a significantly faster broadband plan for even less money.
Depending on the sort of fibre connection you can obtain, fibre broadband deals are available at speeds up to and beyond 1Gbps (1000Mbps). That’s almost 100 times faster than copper-based broadband, and it’ll keep your home future-proofed for decades.
Fibre broadband is referred to as ‘faster’ because downloads are completed considerably more quickly. As a result, web pages, pictures, and videos will load much faster.
However, because it allows for more detail in the things you watch and listen to online, the quality of what you do online rises substantially. Superfast fibre speeds, for example, make 4K video conceivable.
Standard broadband should be enough if you live in a small household of one or two people and simply use the internet for minor tasks like scrolling through social media, sending emails, or watching the occasional YouTube video.
Unless you can obtain fiber broadband for the same price, in which case you might as well have a faster connection if the monthly cost is the same (or less). Before you make a decision, check to discover if fiber broadband is genuinely less expensive than your current connection. You may discover that the additional cost is justified due to the increased reliability that fibre gives.
If you regularly stream TV shows and movies, play online games, download large files and programs, or reside in a household with three or more internet users, the speed advantage provided by fibre broadband is priceless.
Take a look at the following examples to see how much bandwidth you’ll require for each device while it’s in use:
1Mbps for social media
2Mbps for web browsing
Typical definition 3Mbps HD Netflix streaming 5Mbps for Netflix streaming
4K 25Mbps for Netflix streaming
3-6Mbps for online gaming
35Mbps for cloud gaming (like Google Stadia).
Different services, of course, will have their criteria. However, the more internet you want to use at the same time, the more bandwidth you’ll require. If four people are trying to watch Netflix at the same time, you’ll need four times the minimum required speed. Otherwise, you could have to deal with squabbles over who gets to use the internet when.
To see if fiber broadband is available in your location, use our postcode checker.
The way fibre broadband distributes data gives it a speed edge. Standard ADSL broadband uses the same copper wires as your landline phone, but on different electrical frequencies, allowing both services to operate simultaneously (unlike the old days of dial-up).
Fiber-optic broadband cables, on the other hand, are built of plastic and glass and transport data via pulsating light beams (thus the term “optic”). While both convey data at roughly the same speed, light pulses can carry a lot more information than electrical impulses transmitted across copper lines. Furthermore, unlike copper, fibre signals do not deteriorate over time, ensuring a more stable connection.
In layman’s terms, this means that fibre broadband can deliver significantly more bandwidth in a shorter amount of time. Not only does this imply substantially faster internet speeds, but it also means that the internet will not slow down if you reside far from your nearest street cabinet.
Fibre broadband comes in two different flavors. Fibre-to-the-cabinet is the most common type (FTTC). Only fibre-optic cables are used until they reach your local street-level cabinet, after which copper phone lines are used to complete the journey to your home. It provides superfast speeds, which are typically between 30-70Mbps.
Then there’s full fiber, which is also known as fiber-to-the-premises (FTTP). As the name implies, this eliminates copper and replaces it with fiber-optic cabling from the exchange to your home.
Full fibre is capable of much faster speeds because it runs fiber-optic cables to your home. It can provide ‘ultrafast’ (over 100Mbps) and even ‘gigabit’ (1Gbps, or 1000Mbps) internet speeds, but at a much higher cost.
Take a look at our comprehensive fibre broadband guide to discover more about how it works.
If you want to locate the finest fiber broadband deal, you must first choose which plan is ideal for you and your family. Because certain features and services would be more suitable to you than others, there is no one-size-fits-all approach to broadband.
The more people who use broadband in your home, the quicker internet speed you’ll need — and hence the higher monthly fee you’ll have to pay.
For instance, there may be instances when one person is watching Netflix, while another is listening to music on Spotify, and yet another is playing online games. As a result, your internet speed must be sufficient to accomplish all of these jobs simultaneously.
As a general guideline:
If you only have 1-2 people in your home, you could probably get away with a slower, cheaper fibre broadband speed of less than 50Mbps. However, if you and your partner frequently use the internet for bandwidth-intensive activities such as 4K streaming or gaming, you may need to seek something faster.
3–4 individuals: If your entire home only uses the internet on occasion, a 35Mbps connection may be the most cost-effective alternative. However, if you or your children frequently watch Netflix or YouTube or play online games, a connection speed of 50-100Mbps is recommended.
5 or more people: If your family utilizes the internet regularly or if your youngsters watch a lot of movies, 50-100Mbps would be a good choice. However, if the majority of the people in the house use the internet frequently, such as for high-quality TV streaming or working from home, a speed of 100Mbps or higher is recommended.
Another thing to think about is whether a package offer would be beneficial to you.
Broadband and television bundles combine your broadband and television services into one contract. Only providers that provide both services, such as Sky, BT, Virgin Media, TalkTalk, and others, can do so. However, if you use both services regularly, you could save a lot of money each month by not having to pay two separate bills.
Some providers also allow you to bundle a mobile phone contract with your broadband package, allowing you to save money by bundling both services into one. These bundles will be offered by providers with mobile phone networks, such as Vodafone, BT, and EE.
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|Onestream Jetstream Fibre No-limit Broadband
|Virgin Media M350 Super-fast Fibre Phone and Broadband
|Virgin Media M200 Super-fast Fibre Broadband (no phone line)
|Plusnet No-limit Phone Line and Broadband
|Plusnet No-limit Fibre Extra with Phone Line
|BT Fibre 2 Broadband
|Virgin Media M200 Super-fast Fibre Phone and Broadband
|TalkTalk No-limit Fibre 65 with Phone Line
|Virgin Media M100 Super-fast Fibre Phone and Broadband
Although the terms “superfast,” “ultrafast,” and “gigabit” may sound like marketing buzzwords, they all refer to the speeds you can obtain.
Download rates of more than 30Mbps are considered superfast. The majority of broadband providers define ultrafast as speeds of 100Mbps or greater. Although, according to Ofcom, it must be greater than 300Mbps.
Gigabit broadband refers to the fastest connections currently available, which are roughly 1Gbps or more and can only be given via complete fiber connections.
While these are the official distinctions between each speed category, full fiber broadband is frequently referred to as “superfast” in the media and elsewhere. So keep it in mind when browsing for internet deals in your neighborhood.
It’s now extremely rare for 1Gbps to be achieved through a home’s Wi-Fi signal; to do so, you’ll need to attach an ethernet cable into the device you’re using. A wireless connection, on the other hand, can still provide several hundred megabits per second, which is more than adequate for practically every household in the United Kingdom.
Because of the launch of ‘Wi-Fi 6’ technology, Wi-Fi routers will soon be able to offer gigabit wireless speeds. As a result, it won’t be long before you can experience the quickest speeds available without having to connect several devices.
To compare broadband download times, consider the following examples:
|Broadband connection Type
|Broadband connection Type
|Broadband connection Type
At least one provider can provide fiber broadband to the great majority of UK residences. According to Ofcom data, 96 percent of UK homes have access to superfast FTTC broadband.
The majority of connections are offered via Openreach’s networks as FTTC. Meanwhile, approximately 24% of UK homes have access to full fiber (FTTP), while a variety of providers are rolling out new networks in the coming months and years to dramatically expand this statistic.
You may use our postcode checker to see what sorts of broadband are available in your region and what types of broadband are accessible.
There are a number of reasons why some residences are still unable to receive fiber broadband. One of the most common is the cost of installing networks, which is especially problematic in rural areas.
Fibre internet providers may not consider it cost-effective to invest so much money for a very small number of potential consumers because laying cables in remote regions is quite expensive.
To tackle this, the government recently announced Project Gigabit, a full-fibre deployment program aimed at bringing 1Gbps speeds to the country’s hardest-to-reach rural residences.
However, several full-fibre providers, such as Hyperoptic, are working hard to improve internet connections for urban areas and new-build residences in particular.
If you don’t have access to fiber, there are still some fast solutions in the form of mobile broadband. The average 4G speed is roughly 24Mbps, which is still more than double the typical copper ADSL broadband speed. While 5G broadband coverage is still limited, it has the potential to provide superfast rates of up to 300Mbps.
See if you can obtain fast broadband speeds without a fixed-line connection by looking at our latest mobile broadband offerings.
Almost all UK broadband providers offer fibre, with the majority of them utilizing Openreach’s network. Some complete fibre providers, on the other hand, supply ultra-fast and gigabit services using their infrastructure.
To summarize, it pays to shop around for fiber internet deals to ensure you receive the best bargain.
BT is the most popular fibre broadband provider in the UK, while Sky and TalkTalk are also quite popular. Virgin Media, the third ‘Big Four’ broadband provider in the UK, has its fiber-based cable network. It provides higher speeds but has a lower availability rate, with just about 52% of establishments covered.
Here are some of the fiber broadband providers with which you can currently compare offers.
If you have fibre-optic broadband provided to your home via copper cabling as part of an FTTC network, you will still require a working phone line.
You can avoid this need if you have access to Virgin Media’s cable broadband, full fibre, or compatible mobile broadband.
See how to obtain fiber Internet without a phone line in our guide.
Faster broadband speeds make for nicer TV and streaming connections, therefore bundling fibre broadband with TV is highly common. Because of this, several large broadband providers frequently package fiber and television services.
If you don’t require TV, though, fiber broadband-only offers are also available. You may compare these prices by using the ‘fibre broadband’ filter on our broadband alone deals page.
Fibre broadband connects your home with fibre-optic cables, which carry data via light beams. These connections provide faster and more dependable performance over longer distances than conventional copper-based ADSL lines.
In the United Kingdom, fibre broadband is fairly affordable, with the cheapest options costing only a few pounds more per month than substantially slower conventional broadband. When you compare fiber packages, you’re sure to find one that fits your budget.
Full fibre uses fiber all the way to a customer’s door, providing significantly faster speeds than other fiber connections.
Unless you’re upgrading to full fibre, you won’t need an engineer to switch to a new fibre connection if you currently have fiber installed.
If you’re currently using a copper ADSL broadband connection, the same applies. Because most fibre offers use the same copper cables as your phone line, switching to them does not require the services of an engineer.
However, if you want full fibre, an engineer would need to install a fibre line at your home.
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