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Plusnet Unlimited broadband review

Wednesday, November 4th 2015

Plusnet’s Unlimited broadband package runs at a steady speed of up to 17Mbps, does not have a usage limit and has the option of coming with or without a call plan. If you want the flexibility of not being tied to a 12-month contract, for a little extra money you can choose to go on a rolling monthly contract.

The BT-owned company sits at the lower-priced end of the market but offers some interesting options. We take a look at the package’s speed, call plan, value and extras so you can decide if it might suit you.

Cable.co.uk overall rating
2.6

Plusnet has produced an unlimited standard broadband package that is perfect for small families with low internet usage. While it’s more expensive, the rolling contract is a useful option for those looking for something short-term, and its UK-based customer support service is a great extra. If you’re expecting something cheaper for rural areas, however, you will be sadly disappointed.

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Speed & usage

Rating

3

Plusnet advertises a speed of up to 17Mbps for its broadband, which is the norm for a standard broadband line, and should be fast enough for a small family of low to average internet users who want to browse the net, send emails, make video calls and stream standard definition TV and movies. However, what Plusnet advertises and what Plusnet provides can be two different things, and you should check what speed is available in your area before you get your hopes up for 17Mbps. Regardless of the speed you actually receive, the package is, as the name suggests, unlimited, meaning you can surf and download as much as you like.

Plusnet operates a traffic management policy to ensure average users do not get slowed down by others engaged in more bandwidth-heavy activities. This means that, at busy times, higher priority practices, such as browsing and online gaming, will take precedence over lower priority activities, such as peer-to-peer sharing and file transferring – which is a good thing if you are a light user.

Advertised download speed Up to 17Mbps
Average downloads (off-peak) 9.3Mbps – 10.8Mbps
Average downloads (peak) 9.2Mbps – 10.7Mbps
Advertised upload speed Up to 1.3Mbps
Monthly usage limit No
Traffic management Yes
Static IP Optional
Minimum contract Rolling or 12 months
Router Sagemcom 2704n
Public wi-fi No
Prices from £19.99 per month
Info

Scroll horizontally for more information.

What you can do with it

Advertised

Actual

The ‘Actual’ speeds are those reported by Ofcom.

Call plan

Rating

2

Plusnet no longer offers inclusive calls as standard, instead you'll have to make calls on a pay-as-you-go basis. You'll also get free calls to other Plusnet Phone customers and Plusnet Support at all times. For an additional monthly charge, you can upgrade to Plusnet Evening and Weekend calls which includes inclusive calls to UK landlines or Anytime calls, which includes anytime calls to UK landlines. You could also opt for Plusnet Anytime International 300, which offers the same features as Anytime but, instead you receive an extra 300 anytime minutes to the top 35 destinations.

There is also a range of additional extras that can be added to your call plan, which are Caller Display, Call Divert, Ringback, Call Reminder and Call Waiting. These are available to purchase in a saver scheme, so the more you buy the more you save. You can also add 100 anytime UK mobile minutes and an advanced Voicemail service for additional fees.

Extras

Rating

2

Unfortunately, Plusnet does not offer much in the way of extras to sweeten its broadband packages, which is a bit of a shame. The most important perk is the UK-based customer support service, which has won awards in the past but, as the company got larger, standards dropped slightly. Plusnet has since established another call centre and claims its customer service standards are on the rise again.

You will also receive Plusnet Protect, an internet security package powered by McAfee which blocks viruses and spyware, and keeps sensitive eyes away from harmful material. It is available to all Plusnet broadband customers free for three months and then £2 a month thereafter.

You may be forgiven for thinking Plusnet is a rurally-focused broadband provider but, similarly to other providers, it charges more for those that want broadband in areas covered by fewer companies. Plusnet has separated its coverage into three Markets, Market 1 and 2 represent more rural areas and are more expensive, and Market 3 represents more built up and cheaper areas. The difference in price is not enormous, but it’s worth bearing in mind when choosing your package.

Plusnet is known as one of the less expensive providers, and its Unlimited Broadband deal is in the lower end of its price spectrum, but there are a few factors to consider when making up your mind. You can purchase the package on a 12-month or rolling contract, which is great for those who want a short-term commitment, but costs more and includes an activation fee. Line rental is included in all Plusnet’s broadband prices. You may have to pay an installation charge if Plusnet need to send an engineer to your property to install a phone line.

  • Broadband
    Max download speed17Mb
    Max upload speed1Mb
    Monthly usageUnlimited
    Home Phone
    Daytime calls12.50ppm
    Evening calls12.50ppm
    Weekend calls12.50ppm
    Pricing & Contract
    Set-up cost£10
    Contract length12 months
    First year cost £249.88

    £19.99
    per month
    includes line rental

  • Broadband
    Max download speed38Mb
    Max upload speed9.5Mb
    Monthly usageUnlimited
    Home Phone
    Daytime calls12.50ppm
    Evening calls12.50ppm
    Weekend calls12.50ppm
    Pricing & Contract
    Set-up cost£25
    Contract length12 months
    First year cost £324.88

    £24.99
    per month
    includes line rental

  • Broadband
    Max download speed17Mb
    Max upload speed1Mb
    Monthly usageUnlimited
    Home Phone
    Daytime callsInclusive
    Evening callsInclusive
    Weekend callsInclusive
    Pricing & Contract
    Set-up cost£10
    Contract length12 months
    First year cost £345.88

    £27.99
    per month
    includes line rental

Plusnet’s router is not as spectacular as those provided by the top-end broadband companies, such as Virgin or Sky, but it’s free (subject to a delivery charge) and will get you online wirelessly. The Sagemcom 2704n uses single band technology, which does not provide as strong a signal as a router with dual band technology, and features four 10/100 Ethernet ports so you can still connect your devices if they are not wireless.

There is no upfront cost for installation with Plusnet but, if you need a phone line installed at your property, you my be charged for an engineer to visit. You will have to be present when the engineer arrives, but that can be arranged when you contact Plusnet.

Plusnet Sagemcom 2704n Router

Overall Rating

2.6

Plusnet’s Unlimited Broadband package has some interesting quirks that elevate it above an average standard broadband deal. The option to switch to a rolling contract will be useful for those that don’t want to commit to anything long-term, and the UK-based call centre will be very appealing to those who are not particularly tech-savvy. Other than that it features a solid speed without any usage limits and would suit a household with moderate internet needs.

Get Plusnet Unlimited Broadband

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