Plusnet broadband vs Sky broadband: Which is best?

Marc Shoffman | May 25th, 2023

Plusnet and Sky logo

Plusnet and Sky both offer decent broadband services but come from vastly different starting points. One is proud of its Yorkshire roots and support for the local community around Leeds and Sheffield, while the other is a massive global brand.

However, when it comes to speed, the two are now equally matched, thanks to the ongoing rollout of full fibre by Openreach. But what about the finer details of customer service and contract length? This is where a few differences appear. We take a look at them here.

Feature Winner
Broadband speeds Plusnet
Broadband packages Sky
Customer service Sky
Router and tech Sky
Extras Draw
Overall winner Sky

Broadband speeds

Sky and Plusnet both offer regular fibre broadband and ultrafast broadband. Plusnet offers two regular fibre speeds, averaging 36Mbps and 66Mbps, whereas Sky only offers one regular fibre speed of 59Mbps. When it comes to ultrafast speeds, Plusnet offers 500Mbps and 910Mbps. Sky offers three: 145Mbps, 500Mbps and 900Mbps.

For those few customers who are not connected to any fibre network, both Sky and Plusnet offer standard broadband averaging 10Mbps (Plusnet) and 11Mbps (Sky).

Note that the full fibre, ultrafast speeds are not yet available everywhere. You can use our broadband comparison tool to find out exactly what is available at your address by keying in your postcode.

Plusnet logo

Winner: Plusnet broadband

Both providers offer ultrafast speeds to those who can get them. But if Openreach has not yet installed full fibre in your area, Plusnet has the edge over Sky since if offers the faster fibre speed of 66Mbps against Sky’s 59Mbps.

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Broadband packages

Plusnet offers five core packages. You can get Unlimited Fibre (36Mbps) or Unlimited Fibre Extra (66Mbps), and there is a choice of three Full Fibre packages: 145, 500 and 900. All plans come on a 24-month contract. There is also the option for customers (in a full fibre area) to take Full Fibre 74Mbps, and for customers without access to any fibre, Plusnet will still supply standard broadband averaging 10Mbps.

Plusnet’s regular fibre packages come with a phone line and pay-as-you-go calls as standard, with the option to bolt on anytime calls, whereas its full fibre packages come without a phone line.

Sky provides four core packages, all on 18-month contracts. Sky Broadband Superfast is Sky’s only regular fibre package and averages 59Mbps. It then offers three Broadband Ultrafast packages of 145Mbps, 500Mbps and 900Mbps. Customers without any access to fibre can buy Broadband Essential Plus, which has an average speed of 11Mbps.

Sky Broadband Superfast and Broadband Essential plans come with a phone line and pay-as-you-go calls as standard, with the option to bolt on other calls packages if required. Its full fibre plans come without a phone line but customers can choose to have Internet Calls if they still want to use a home phone.

Sky logo

Winner: Sky broadband

Sky wins on this round by offering all its packages on a shorter, 18-month contract, against the 24-months offered by Plusnet, along with the fact that a home phone option is still available with all plans.

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Customer service

Plusnet may have a trophy cabinet bursting with rewards for customer service over the years, but according to Ofcom’s latest customer satisfaction report, it doesn’t come out on top.

For customer satisfaction with service overall, Plusnet scores 79 per cent, which is below the sector average of 83 per cent, and also below Sky’s score of 84 per cent. Satisfaction with complaint handling for Plusnet customers was 43 per cent, against the high score of 54 per cent for Sky, with a sector average of 50 per cent.

Plusnet customers can get in touch with customer services over the phone on 0800 432 0200 8am-8pm seven days a week, or by sending a message to the provider on Twitter. Alternatively, Plusnet has a community forum where you can ask other customers for help and advice.

Sky customers can get in touch by calling 0333 7591 018, but Sky does everything possible to discourage this, by offering a wealth of helpful information on its website, covering everything from speed issues to making a complaint. Customers can also get in touch directly on Twitter @SkyHelpTeam.

Sky logo

Winner: Sky broadband

Although Plusnet does better with customer accessibility, Sky comes out very well in Ofcom’s report into customer satisfaction, so for this section, Sky wins.

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Router and tech

Plusnet’s fibre customers will be sent the Plusnet Hub Two. This dual band router comes with four Ethernet ports and seven wireless antennas for optimal coverage. Unlimited Broadband customers, however, will get a more basic, single-band Hub Zero.

Sky broadband customers now receive the latest dual-band Sky Broadband Hub, which has four Ethernet ports, eight antennas for optimum wifi coverage and allows up to 64 devices to be connected wirelessly at the same time. Customers that have an issue with their wifi reach can subscribe to Sky Broadband Boost and claim additional Sky wifi boosters to improve the signal around their home.

Sky logo

Winner: Sky broadband

Although both the Sky Broadband Hub and the Plusnet Hub Two are both good routers with smart scan technology, the Sky router has eight aerials over the Hub Two’s seven, helping to provide a better wifi signal. Where Sky really stands out from Plusnet is with its option to set up a mesh network around your home thanks to its Wifi Boosters, albeit at extra cost. When it comes to tech, Sky wins.

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All Plusnet packages come with online parental control without you needing to download any software. The service is called Plusnet Safeguard and lets you block access to certain websites and select others as safe. Customers also get Plusnet Protect security and anti-virus software powered by McAfee, free for all fibre customers.

Once installed on your PC, Plusnet Protect will provide anti-virus, anti-spyware and anti-spam protection from malicious software, malicious social networking links and junk email. It uses two-way firewalls to prevent remote hacking access to your PCs and provides protection for up to seven computers.

There are also perks for current Plusnet customers who refer others. Plusnet encourages you to recommend and refer friends and family and will take money off your monthly bill in return. You can earn up to £1.25 a month off your bill for recommending someone else to Plusnet. There is no limit to the amount of people you can refer; you just need to have lots of friends and family and obviously be happy to recommend the service or you may well end up annoying some of your peers.

Sky customers also get security features. You will receive a McAfee Internet Security Suite trial for 3 months to cover three PCs, as well as the Sky Broadband Shield that lets you filter websites and customise your privacy settings into age categories. There is also a nifty watershed feature that allows you to set age rating restrictions depending on the time of day.

Sky customers also get access to the Sky WiFi app. This gives you free and unlimited access to The Cloud wi-fi in over 20,000 popular places across the UK such as coffee shops and bars. Many public places will already offer free wi-fi, but this gives you an added option where there is less availability.


Both providers offer security software and parental controls. Plusnet differentiates itself with its refer-a-friend service but you would need to recommend a lot of people before the rewards actually make a significant dent in your bill. Sky offers free wifi with access to The Cloud, but as most locations have their own wifi this isn’t too significant. We declare this section a draw.


Both providers offer a similar array of speeds, including full fibre speeds where available, with Plusnet’s prices generally cheaper than those of Sky. Although Plusnet has a good customer service reputation, in fact it is Sky who performed better in Ofcom’s most recent survey. Plusnet requires a longer contract than Sky, but this may suit some people, especially with Plusnet’s lower prices. The providers are almost perfectly matched when it comes to security software and routers, but Sky wins by offering its wifi boosters.

Sky logo

Winner: Sky broadband

Ultimately, if you’re after a broadband and TV package, then Sky wins by a mile as this isn’t an option with Plusnet. But if you just want a good broadband package that doesn’t cost the earth, then we would recommend Plusnet over Sky.

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See also