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Sky broadband review 2017

Luke Thompson
Thursday, July 6th 2017

Sky standard broadband is great for those seeking an uncapped and unlimited internet connection – gamers, movie buffs and home workers – but is it good for everyone else?

Not only do we examine the positives of joining Sky broadband, such as the unlimited data allowance and the low latency rates, we also take a look at the negatives, including its relatively limited public wi-fi.

Cable.co.uk rating

Broadband Cable.co.uk
  • Overall
    4/5

Pros and cons

  • Unlimited data allowance
  • Great for gamers
  • Short contracts
  • Sky Fibre 25GB has usage limits
  • Unlimited service not available everywhere
  • Limited public wi-fi

What we like

Unlimited data allowance

With the exception of Sky Fibre Broadband and its 25GB usage limit, all Sky’s broadband options come with truly unlimited data. This means you can download whatever you like as much as you like, with no penalties or hidden costs for going over a data limit and no traffic management to artificially slow down your usage. If you want to download a lot, this is one of the key selling points for Sky broadband.

Great for gamers

When you’re looking for a broadband provider that can give you the best gaming experience there are three factors to consider: speed, latency and packet loss.

Latency, the time taken for a data packet to travel from the user to a server and back again, is an average of 15 miliseconds on Sky’s Broadband Unlimited service, which is excellent compared to other providers.

Short contracts

With many broadband contracts stretching to 18 and even 24 months from some providers, it’s refreshing to see a contract length limited to a 12-month minimum period. However, this only applies to Sky standard broadband packages – Sky Fibre is on an 18-month contract.

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Sky currently covers 99% of UK homes and businesses with its standard broadband. You can check the availability of Sky broadband deals in your area by entering your postcode below.

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What we don’t like

Sky Fibre 25GB usage limits

While Sky's limited fibre service may be cheaper, if you regularly stream TV shows and films, you may quickly get through the data limit. However, if you are just happy to have faster browsing and downloadin, then Sky Fibre may be worth considering. Otherwise we'd advise a straight upgrade to Sky Fibre Unlimited.

Unlimited service not available everywhere

If you’re outside of Sky’s extensive network area, you’ll only get the one choice when you choose to sign up to Sky, and that’s Sky Broadband Connect.

Unlike Sky’s unlimited services, Sky Broadband Connect is subject to a 40GB monthly download limit and requires a one-off set-up fee of £30. Its maximum advertised download speed is far less than most other Sky broadband services, clocking in at a comparatively snail-paced 8Mbps, although some customers may get higher speeds.

You’ll also be subject to a network management policy that works in much the same way as any other traffic management scheme, essentially slowing you down during peak times. If you want to sign up to Sky, but know you’re going to be bumped down to Sky Broadband Connect, it may be worth considering other broadband providers.

Limited public wi-fi

While Sky gives you free access to any of its wi-fi hotspots around the country, the hotspots themselves are relatively few and far between. This is most clear when compared to BT’s wi-fi service that has five million hotspots across the UK, rather than the 20,000 offered by Sky.

You can only sign up six devices for use within Sky’s wi-fi hotspots, and you’ll need to have an up-to-date smartphone, tablet or laptop to use the service. To see where your nearest Sky wi-fi hotspot is located, you can use Sky’s Hotspot Finder.

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Conclusion

So is Sky broadband any good? We think it is, even with some minor drawbacks such as the low usage limits on Sky Fibre 25GB option and the limited public wi-fi availability. If you want to take a look at the different Sky broadband deals on offer, just enter your postcode below

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