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Broadband in London: the UK’s fastest connectivity, with increasing competition
There’s a common assumption that London receives everything first, with the rest of the UK following in its wake.
Yet when it comes to broadband deals in London, results may vary more than you’d expect.
Some residents of Mayfair are unable to get broadband significantly above ADSL speeds, while homes in Harrow and Enfield are already enjoying gigabit connectivity.
As such, choosing broadband deals in London is a classic example of a postcode lottery. But why is this the case?
Unlike some countries, the UK has a fiercely competitive domestic broadband industry.
While former BT offshoot Openreach is responsible for telephone connections (used for ADSL and FTTC connections), private companies can offer full fibre broadband.
London represents a prosperous location for these (often small) cable companies to operate, for several reasons:
As a result, many residents of London can get some real bang for their buck with a range of fast, reliable and affordable fibre broadband providers, including Hyperoptic, Gigaclear and Community Fibre.
Even if you’re not one of the lucky ones, London is still well-served by the UK-wide selection of Openreach-dependent broadband firms like Sky, BT, Plusnet and TalkTalk.
You’re also more likely to receive 5G mobile broadband in the capital, which has been a hotbed of 5G rollout for some time. By contrast, some Northern cities have no 5G at all.
And given London’s population density, Openreach is constantly improving existing cabling and pavement exchanges, boosting connection speeds into private homes.
Where can I find the best broadband deals in London?
The simple answer is right here on BroadbandDeals.co.uk.
We feature more broadband deals than any other comparison site, including standard and fibre broadband connections offered by over a dozen ISPs.
Search your postcode now to browse broadband deals in your area.
Frequently asked questions
How long does it take to get broadband installed?▼
Typically 1-2 weeks. Your provider will send you a new router, let your old provider know, and get everything set up ready to go live as soon as possible. Normally setup is as simple as plugging the new router into your phone line, but if there are issues you may need a appointment with an engineer which can take a bit longer.
If you don’t have an existing landline, or you’re moving to Virgin Media or one of the new FTTP providers, they will need to run a new cable from the street to your property.
Can I keep my email address when I switch broadband?▼
If you’re still using an email address from your internet provider (e.g. JoBloggs@talktalk.net) then this can be difficult to move. It’s possible with some providers, but not all, and they may charge you to keep using your old address after you switch.
We strongly recommend moving to a different email provider than your ISP – there are plenty of great free options, such as Gmail, Outlook.com or Yahoo Mail – or you could consider upgrading to your own domain name for a few pounds a year.
Changing email address can be a real hassle, but if you don’t want to be shackled to one ISP for life, sooner or later you’ll have to bite the bullet. You’ll have to let people know and update your address with any services you want to keep, but on the plus side, it’s an opportunity to cut all that annoying spam out of your life!
What if I don't want a long contract?▼
If you’re not sure how long you will need your broadband deal, most providers now offer monthly rolling contract options. However, it will definitely be more expensive, because you won’t benefit from introductory discounts and you’ll need to pay more to cover the costs of hardware and setup.
If you need a shorter contract because you’re planning to move house, bear in mind that providers will normally let you bring your contract with you, and if that’s not possible, some may let you out early. If not, it may still be cheaper to pay a few months more than you need.
There are special 9 month deals available for students, but they’re normally only advertised before the start of the academic year.