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UK ISPs under fire for false advertising

UK ISPs under fire for false advertising

Either the UK's tubes are clogged, or UK ISPs just aren't delivering broadband Internets at ludicrous speed...

A survey conducted by consumer group Which? has revealed that, surprise surprise, the UK’s Internet service providers are not delivering the broadband speeds they’re promising to punters.

Many broadband Internet service providers are promising speeds of 8Mbps, but following numerous complaints from the public who were unhappy with the speeds of their Internets, Which? went about testing 272 consumer’s connections over a two week period.

The results weren’t pretty and showed a huge discrepancy between advertised speed and actual speed, with the average download speed being only 2.7Mbps.

Of course, if you read the small print on most agreements you’ll realise that it’s not a guaranteed 8Mbps – it’s advertised as “up to 8Mbps”. You’d think that at the guy sitting right outside the exchange would get a maximum of 8Mbps, wouldn’t you? Unfortunately not, as the highest speed reached on all of the lines tested during the two week period was only 6.7Mbps.

Even worse was the fact that some consumers who had paid for an “up to 8Mbps” service were experiencing speeds that dropped as low as 0.09Mbps, or 90Kbps, which isn’t even twice as fast as dial-up.

It's not all that bad though, as those signing up to services with lower promised speeds, like 1Mbps or 2Mbps, got a much better deal. Average speeds of 0.8Mbps and 1.3Mbps were recorded for 1Mbps and 2Mbps connections respectively, while the maximum speed recorded on both connection speeds was the promised transfer rate. This means that only punters signing up for higher speeds are getting a raw deal.

“When terms such as ‘up to’ are used, it can be difficult to prove that advertisements are false or misleading. None the less, we’re concerned that Which?’s findings seem to show that claimed speeds are not possible or are very unlikely to be achieved,” said Richard Webb, a trading standards spokesman in response to Which?’s findings.

A BT spokesman told BBC News that “Virtually no-one will get [8Mbps broadband]. The laws of physics start applying as soon as it leaves the exchange and you would have to live on top of the exchange to get the full 8 megabits.” Interestingly, only one in ten of the Which? members surveyed thought that a broadband service advertised as “up to 8Mbps” actually thought they’d get that speed.

An analyst from Point Topic believes that the reason for this is that people are resigned to the fact that they’re not going to get high-speed broadband soon.

Are you happy with your Internet service provider and connection? Share your experiences with us in the forums.

73 Comments

Discuss in the forums Reply
whisperwolf 2nd August 2007, 15:21 Quote
Im guessing that the 9 out of ten people who said they didn't expect to get 8mbps speeds thought they should be getting at least 6mbps. you kinda think that if its advertised at up to 8Mbps you should be getting at least two thirds of that speed or be paying less for the service
Seraphim Works 2nd August 2007, 15:26 Quote
I'm on AOL (long story, but suffice to say, I pay very little), on the silver plan which means up to 2Mbps.

What do I actually get? 0.5Mbps. It's not the fault of my ISP, but due to the fact I live right on the very edge of where the exchange reaches. Another few hundred yards, no broadband for me.

All I can say is to haggle prices with your ISP if you can't get full speeds, tell them you'll leave etc, and almost all will give an incentive to keep you.

Mind you, least we're not still stuck with dial-up. *shudders*
samkiller42 2nd August 2007, 15:27 Quote
Im with BT with a 'Up to 8mb' connection, but its barely been over 1mb since it was installed 2months ago, and we are paying near £25 a month for this service. I my self am a heavy user, with alot of Downloading and BF2, there are 2 Xbox 360's in the house and both on xbox live, im surprised we dont get so much lag when we are in games.

My connection speeds:
DownStream Connection Speed 896 kbps
UpStream Connection Speed 448 kbps


Sam
iwog 2nd August 2007, 15:36 Quote
I got the full 10meg from my ISP, admittedly it was with the then NTL now virgin so it had "other" problems. But atleast speed wasn't one of them, nor was the 24/7 near max speed use of the line.

@samkiller42 you're getting near 8mb. Remember the company gives you speeds in bits and your connection software will measure in bytes. 10meg from NTL = 1.1mbs of the web max.
otispunkmeyer 2nd August 2007, 15:41 Quote
im assuming they never tested cable based internet like Virign media's broadband service? (previously NTL)

i dont really know too much about the differences other than our virgin broadband enters the house on a big chunky coax cable and goes to a cable modem and a equivalent ADSL service comes in through shitty bell wire used for the telephones.

isnt NTL's cable split off from a optical cable or something like that? there must be some reason why i get near as makes no difference the 4Mbps we pay for every month (except when we go over that new limit virgin imposed where they chop your connection to half speed for the night....not that its much of a hinderance at that time like).

if i can find a decently fast server i can usually max out my connection at around 450 to 480kb/s. in theory 4mbps should give 512kb/s a second but obviously every system has in-efficiencies.
Hugo.B 2nd August 2007, 15:41 Quote
Same as samkiller42 with the exception of the speeds never getting anywhere near his.
iwog 2nd August 2007, 15:49 Quote
Otis, yeah NTL/Virgin/those cable b*****ds, use fiber optics which dont slow down, its been part of their big ad campaign over the past few months. Run a few speed tests at speedtest.net and see what speeds you get. You may be surprised that you can normally get better speeds from the sweedish server than the closer London one. And its especially fun when you choose some dodgy server and can upload faster than you can download.
SteveyG 2nd August 2007, 15:51 Quote
We get the full 8mbps on talktalk's free broadband service. Surprisingly, they have been absolutely spot on in terms of service...
Quote:
Originally Posted by iwog
I got the full 10meg from my ISP, admittedly it was with the then NTL now virgin so it had "other" problems. But atleast speed wasn't one of them, nor was the 24/7 near max speed use of the line.

@samkiller42 you're getting near 8mb. Remember the company gives you speeds in bits and your connection software will measure in bytes. 10meg from NTL = 1.1mbs of the web max.

8mbps would be a connection speed of 8192kbps not 896kbps. He's getting about 1/10 of the advertised speed.
mashles 2nd August 2007, 15:53 Quote
i get 7.6mbps with nildram, but i am 400m from my exchange.
Tim S 2nd August 2007, 15:59 Quote
I'm less than 100m from my exchange and I've never had more than 6.5Mbps from Eclipse
Pimp Daddy 2nd August 2007, 16:07 Quote
At least most of you are on BT lines. I leave just outside Hull so I'm a victim of the Kingston Communications monopoly. Yes, there speeds have got better recently, but there not always as fast as they should be and the customer service is dubious at times.

I always thought that monopolies were illegal - but obviously not in Hull!
Blademrk 2nd August 2007, 16:08 Quote
I'm on Pipex Homecall and it varies around 6mb/sec before 4/5pm and around 0.4mb/sec after 4pm til around 11pm.

BT have also switched the line over in the village to 21CN for calls about 2 months ago, although I din't think they're activating the broadband side of it until later on
Seraphim Works 2nd August 2007, 16:10 Quote
Woot, just spoken to AOL after checking my line attenuation, and got them to pop my speed up to 1Mbps. Admittedly still poor compared to the 8Mbps some of you can get, but it's still 100% faster than what I'm on now!

If you're connecting through ADSL, check your line attenuation in your router:
60db and above = 512kbps
41db and above = 1 Mbps
Below 41db = 2Mbps and faster.

I can't remember what the attenuation figures are for 4Mbps, etc.

Speed Calculator, pop in the figures from your router, it'll give you a ballpark figure. If you connect a lot lower than this, it's time to talk to the ISP.
jjsyht 2nd August 2007, 16:12 Quote
So why not advertise "Broadband with up to 10Gbps"?:(
kenco_uk 2nd August 2007, 16:16 Quote
I'm with Plusnet and although the sync speed is fine and speed tests appear ok-ish, actual download speeds vary greatly. Anything from nearly 800kBps down to bugger all, really. When I was on 2Mbps, I could point my mouse anywhere and download at an average of 220kBps. On maxdsl, some stuff downloads quick as you like, whereas other stuff (Winamp, Linux distros for example) simply crawl along. Despite me raising the issue twice, nothing's apparently been done at all. My main fear about changing is, could the service become worse with a different supplier?
DougEdey 2nd August 2007, 16:16 Quote
meh, 20mbps for £19 does me fine
Nikumba 2nd August 2007, 16:26 Quote
"A BT spokesman told BBC News that “Virtually no-one will get [8Mbps broadband]. The laws of physics start applying as soon as it leaves the exchange and you would have to live on top of the exchange to get the full 8 megabits.” Interestingly, only one in ten of the Which? members surveyed thought that a broadband service advertised as “up to 8Mbps” actually thought they’d get that speed."

Pah I get 8mb and I dont sit on the exchange, am about a mile or so away at least I am able to download at over 800Kb/sec with no issues
alextwo 2nd August 2007, 16:34 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by jjsyht
So why not advertise "Broadband with up to 10Gbps"?:(

Because that would be false advertising. The current ADSL equipment is capable of speeds up to 8mb/s though. It's not the ISPs fault really just a limitation of the technology available.
I'm just looking forward to FTTH/FTTC
AlexB 2nd August 2007, 16:47 Quote
I'm with Tiscali '8mb'.

Fastest download i've ever had was 3mbs.

But, as i'm a High Use user, and download over their 'fair' use policy, I get my bandwidth further resctricted during 5-11pm every day.

So, I get download speeds of 20kbs between those hours.

The annoying thing, They sent me the letters saying I was a high use user after being with them for only 1 week of the 12 month contract, and I actually had only downloaded 1 xbox live 600mb demo in that week - as my PC didnt even work! - so hardly un-fair.

I'll be leaving as soon as the contract is up.
LeMaltor 2nd August 2007, 16:54 Quote
Since my NTL BB has swaped over to Virgin ive had problems, slow speed, awful customer service and now nightly caps :S
TomH 2nd August 2007, 17:08 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by TFA

A BT spokesman told BBC News that “Virtually no-one will get [8Mbps broadband]. The laws of physics start applying as soon as it leaves the exchange and you would have to live on top of the exchange to get the full 8 megabits.” Interestingly, only one in ten of the Which? members surveyed thought that a broadband service advertised as “up to 8Mbps” actually thought they’d get that speed.
That sums it all up - since when was this news? People are stupid, and physics applies to everything involving electricity and wires.

If BT got up off their arse and introduced a FTTC network, we wouldn't be in situations like these. But the ISPs get the flak, when I'd imagine 99% of the time it's nothing to do with them. Congratulations to Which? on another stand-up attempt at providing an appropriate test for something.

Which? lost all respect when they started pitting crappy Kodak digital compacts against Nikon DSLRs and voting for the Kodak - "Reviewed by, A. Monkey"
Bladestorm 2nd August 2007, 17:14 Quote
One of the issues is that when they are talking about 1MB or 2MB connections, they are actually talking about 1.2mb or 2.4mb - the extra bit is the overheads of running a connection which leaves about 1MB/2MB usable.

When it came time to upgrade the infrastructure though, some ISP somewhere decided to include the overheads in the figure, and thus start claiming "up to 8 MB" when the actual max connection speed is about 6.7mb as mentioned here. Once one of them started doing it the others weren't going to be left behind so they all started doing it.

What makes it worse is the advertising standards people say if theres a problem with speeds its not there fault - its the jurisdiction of the telecoms watchdog and the telecoms watchdog of course says its an advertising issue the buck just isn't stopping.

Issue number two is that the bulk of service providers these days are looking to cram as many users into a given capacity as possible and work on the assumption that people will only want a fraction of there connection averaged over time, so when you get people who actually use the lines, you find there isn't nearly enough available bandwidth for everyone to get near there supposed top speed.

Line distance as mentioned already by others is another issue - in the past a lot of people who get broadband are close enough for 1mb or 2mb, but start hitting line degradation well before "8mb"

one final thing that the "up to 8mb" technology has introduced is that with the 8mb tech's focus being on getting as much speed as possible from a line, reliability for some drops compared to the older services which were focused on reliability and consistency and didn't push the line as hard (giving more room for error)

Its all a bit of a mess really.
cyrilthefish 2nd August 2007, 17:25 Quote
It's no different to old dialup access.

that was always advertised as 56k despite the problem that it was physically impossible to get that speed in the real world, only in ideal, short-length laboratory conditions. I never saw a dialup connection go faster than 50k ;) it was usually at around the 45k mark

ADSL also depends on the line quality a lot, i used to be on an 8meg service that could connect at around 4-5meg, but was only actually stable if limited to 2-3meg at the exchange due to the poor quality of my phone line.

I'm now on 4meg cable and very happy... i get a perfectly stable 4meg connection with it :)
skunkmunkey 2nd August 2007, 17:30 Quote
Im with ADSL24 (part of Entanet) and they are great. They cost a little more (29.99 for the package im on) but my speed is always 869 kbps and They have no minimum contract. On top of that I get 90gb of peak downloads and 320gb of off-peak downloads. The bigest con is those offering an *Unlimited* service when they actually have a crappy fair use policy of 40gb p/m.
fwalm 2nd August 2007, 17:50 Quote
Im paying £24.99 a month for 0.25mb broadband because i supposedly couldnt get broadband from anyone except for BT. Since im to far away from the exchange and its BT so it really is a rip off. However i never get lag when im playing xbox live or on the pc. Just very bad download speeds.
[WP@]WOLVERINE 2nd August 2007, 17:55 Quote
Thank god i Live in Sweden and dont have to worry about slow connections :) Both Speeds and prices in sweden are VERY good. In Sweden you can get 100mbit in both directions for 20euros a mounth. I Live in a real shithole so i only get 24/2.5 but im pretty happy with that alltough in Swedish terms i have a really crappy line. Since i live a bit to far from the station i only get about 1,6mb/s download and about 180kb/s up but thats pretty decent anyway. Oh and Download and uploadlimits doesnt exsist in Sweden :)

ps we have a couple of isps that lie their ass off to in ads but not as bad as that.
milkopop 2nd August 2007, 18:15 Quote
I am currently with BE Broadband and am delighted with the service, I understand that they have been told off in the past for very similar reasons namely that they advertise Up to 24 M/bit. To be fair i don't get this but was advised i should get approx 12 meg download where I am, in fact I can hit 14 Meg most of the time though it can fluctuate a little. Customer service was fantastic and they were very up front in all communications that the 24 Meg was not easily achieved. Still I suppose 14 Meg ain't 24 but it's a damn sight more than most other people get.
mikeuk2004 2nd August 2007, 18:20 Quote
Im with AOL and I was on the Platinum package which was £29.99 a month for unlimited 8mb and all was great

When I went to cancell a few months back they said I could keep the same package for £9,99. However I now have slow conecetion and wish I cancelled.

When I check my router, some days it is conected at 7mb and others its 8mb. I now can barely get web pages to open as the internet is so slow and its getting worse. I have a suposedly 8mb connection but its slower than dialup. I can do PC gaming anymore because of the lagg where as both me and my bro used to play together online with no lag. When we lived in a student house a few years back there were 8 of use sharing a 1mb connection fine for gaming and now 1 of us struggle on a 8mb going solo.

I do speed tests and I am currently getting comparable with 512kb. My upload speed is almost spot on with my download speed now.

What can I do???? Im paying for 8mb getting 512kb and stuck in a new 12 month contract
iwog 2nd August 2007, 19:30 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by SteveyG
8mbps would be a connection speed of 8192kbps not 896kbps. He's getting about 1/10 of the advertised speed.

its 8192 kilobits and he recieves 896 kilobytes = 7168 kilobits

Its like the 100gig HDD is actually about 93 gigabytes due to the 1000, 1024 conversion thingy
RTT 2nd August 2007, 19:42 Quote
I manage to get about 7mbit out of Tiscali 8mbit :) I don't really give a damn though... i rarely download anything other than web pages and IM. You could reduce me down to 256kbit and i'd not notice probably :D
Buzzons 2nd August 2007, 19:52 Quote
Your link from us appears to be about 6.469560Mb/s and about 3miles from exchange, I'm happy :)

but seriously, every add has "UP TO" stamped on it, and has for ages. those that don't understand that should go back to dial up :p as they are the ones that no doubt have tones of bots/spyware on their pcs
Ramble 2nd August 2007, 20:13 Quote
I've never really had that problem, thankfully on ntl (VM) you generally get the speed you pay for.
Unfortunately all this VM business has slowed it down quite a bit due to oversubscribing.
Hypno 2nd August 2007, 20:23 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by samkiller42
Im with BT with a 'Up to 8mb' connection, but its barely been over 1mb since it was installed 2months ago, and we are paying near £25 a month for this service. I my self am a heavy user, with alot of Downloading and BF2, there are 2 Xbox 360's in the house and both on xbox live, im surprised we dont get so much lag when we are in games.

My connection speeds:
DownStream Connection Speed 896 kbps
UpStream Connection Speed 448 kbps


Sam

Sam ive been having the same problems with BT i upgraded to the 8MB connection about 3 months ago. And only once got 368kbps the rest of the time it would be like 50-100kbps. I got fed up with the speed and random line drop outs i live about 400 meters from the exchange. I wrote questions to the help desk and never got a reply. So i went direct not phoning them due to i cant deal with Indians telling me things ive done over and over. I emailed telling them that ive only had 50-100kbps since i upgraded, I took a screen shot of there speed test result which showed it below standards. And basicly told them if there is know improvement with in 2 days i will be asking for a refund. By 4pm that day i had a call i told them ive done everything there going to ask me to do and its your end. Seems to have kicked them in to gear as my connection has got faster by the day. Checked this morning and i was getting close to 700kbps.

p,s Get rid of the home nub if you have one.
Bungle 2nd August 2007, 21:06 Quote
Lets all move to Sweden
mikeuk2004 2nd August 2007, 21:20 Quote
After using aol online service it took the operator 1 hour telling me i get 7.5mb and then finally tell me my conection is slow at under 400kbs because im a heavy user and have been limited. wtf??? My wife streams videos (Chinese TV) and i surf the web and play games.

It was only a couple of months ago I had a good 8mb service and when i wanted to cancell to try BT as it was cheaper, they said stay and have 8mb for £10, so i said ok then. Since then the internet has been slow and I can not play games and its because they have limited me.

So when they said stay to have 8mb unlimited for £10 they were really selling my 512kb unlimited for £10.

Cancellation lines are closed so ill have to call tomorrow to cancell.

They are right in its unlimited downloads but the speed you download is not unlimited. I see that is how they get around the upto 8mb, its so they can change your speed when they feel like it to save money and make more.

Im not happy.
SteveyG 2nd August 2007, 21:34 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by iwog
its 8192 kilobits and he recieves 896 kilobytes = 7168 kilobits

Its like the 100gig HDD is actually about 93 gigabytes due to the 1000, 1024 conversion thingy

Quote:
Originally Posted by samkiller42
My connection speeds:
DownStream Connection Speed 896 kbps
UpStream Connection Speed 448 kbps


Sam

samkiller42 said 896kbps, not 896kBps. b = bits, B = bytes. Also he said connection speeds, not download speeds

You'd be lucky to get 448 kilobytes per second upload speed on ADSL as it currently stands ;)

Quote:
Originally Posted by AlexB
I'm with Tiscali '8mb'.

Fastest download i've ever had was 3mbs.

But, as i'm a High Use user, and download over their 'fair' use policy, I get my bandwidth further resctricted during 5-11pm every day.

So, I get download speeds of 20kbs between those hours.

The annoying thing, They sent me the letters saying I was a high use user after being with them for only 1 week of the 12 month contract, and I actually had only downloaded 1 xbox live 600mb demo in that week - as my PC didnt even work! - so hardly un-fair.

I'll be leaving as soon as the contract is up.

You can end your contract prematurely with Tiscali with no cancellation charge if you break their fair usage policy three times. They then allow you to get your MAC for free :)
Seraphim Works 2nd August 2007, 21:41 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by iwog
its 8192 kilobits and he recieves 896 kilobytes = 7168 kilobits

Its like the 100gig HDD is actually about 93 gigabytes due to the 1000, 1024 conversion thingy

That's wrong I'm afraid, he's quoting kbps. That's bits per second. Bytes is a B, so 8kbps = 1kBps.

He's being shafted by his ISP as far as I'm concerned, and he's right to be unhappy with the speed.

EDIT - Damn you Stevey, too fast for me.
SteveyG 2nd August 2007, 21:51 Quote
My internet connection must be faster than yours :p by 7 minutes
K.I.T.T. 2nd August 2007, 21:52 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by iwog
@samkiller42 you're getting near 8mb. Remember the company gives you speeds in bits and your connection software will measure in bytes. 10meg from NTL = 1.1mbs of the web max.

Now it is you who has you bits and bytes muddled i'm sorry to say. 10meg will be in reference to 10Mb/s (10 Mega-bits per second) which equates to around about 1.1MB/s (Mega-Bytes per second).

I'm with VM right now too with the 10Mb pack which should actually be 20Mb by now but for some reason the modem isn't downloading the 2048 - 768 config file when it reboots *sigh* not that i expected it to all work smoothly now that Virgin are calling the shots
Seraphim Works 2nd August 2007, 22:00 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by SteveyG
My internet connection must be faster than yours :p by 7 minutes

Admittedly I was messing around in WMP11 at the same time, but bah.

On topic though, although the ISPs advertise high speed packages, there's always a disclaimer stating that the speed depends on line quality etc. So if anyone's going to get criticised, surely it should be whoever's in charge of the line the data travels through, ISP bashing seems mostly pointless unless haggling is involved.
yodasarmpit 2nd August 2007, 22:19 Quote
I'm getting just under 7meg on my 8meg connection from Sky (non LLU) but I do live just a hop, skip and jump from the exchange
ChromeX 2nd August 2007, 22:26 Quote
usually my speeds are very good with orange (formerly wanadoo (formerly freeserve)) I live about 750m from the exchange as the crow flies but recently its been rather poor. I think our exchange is located near to the metrolink lines and I think they've probably cut a cable or something. Bloody workmen!
herbs 2nd August 2007, 22:28 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ramble
I've never really had that problem, thankfully on ntl (VM) you generally get the speed you pay for.
Unfortunately all this VM business has slowed it down quite a bit due to oversubscribing.

I can honestly say vm is shite I know 4 people who live 7-8 miles away from each other that all get 500kbps -1meg connection from 4-12pm although all are on 4meg or above connections and all but 1 doesn't download much. If you want to complain they all say it's upto 4 meg (or whatever connection you are on), even on they own network. Richard Branston has sold his brand down the river by given his name to the NTL monkeys.
kitt 2nd August 2007, 23:25 Quote
OMG i seem to hav a twin. i was here first, lol.

Like the member said before, Im from the land that the internet forgot too, namely Hull. We have no choice of provider whatsoever, we have to use Karoo (Kingston Communications).
All they offer are 4 levels of the new so called 'Max' service its the most inappropriate name ever. :(
The theory is the higher the level you're on (i.e. the more you pay the higher priority you get, and hence faster speeds).
Well im on priority 4 (the highest), costs about £30 a month.
Dont think i've EVER got above 450 KB/s download, its throttled to high heaven, you can only get full speed (if you can call it that) during off peak (midnight - 7am).
During peak times you literally get oldschool 0.5Mb speeds if your lucky.

What i'd do for a bloody choice of ISP.


just to inform the other 'hullian':
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pimp Daddy
At least most of you are on BT lines. I leave just outside Hull so I'm a victim of the Kingston Communications monopoly. Yes, there speeds have got better recently, but there not always as fast as they should be and the customer service is dubious at times.

I always thought that monopolies were illegal - but obviously not in Hull!

I have a bit of experience in this area, technically its not a monopoly. In most of the country BT own the lines, they then in turn rent them out / let other companies use them for a fee, which is what happens when someone wants broadband/telephone from another provider. In Hull, however, the lines are all owned by KC, whilst companies can rent their lines no-one wants to because its not worth it, KC put the prices so high its unprofitable to do so, while technically not a monopoly, devious tactics nonetheless.

Its better than it was, up until under a year ago we just had 512, 1m, 2m, 3m. The only decent speed, the 3 meg service was ~£40. Anyways thats all you lot filled in on hull.
Joeymac 2nd August 2007, 23:44 Quote
First ISP which decides to not cripple my connection down to what it was in 2002 during the evenings gets my money.
I've just checked my line attenuation thing and I'm hitting the limits download speed... just shy of 4Mbits/sec. But I have 22dB of space left in my upload speed so I should be able to have 1.5Mbit/sec up... which would be nice!

Crippling people's connections is the main problem as far as I'm concerned. I fully understand the limits of the line. But to down to 512K for the main time of day I actually use the internet is utterly ridiculous and thievery. Before upgrading to "maxdsl" I used to be able to have a completely, 100% stable speed of 2Mbit/sec 24-7. I live in a village of old people. There isn't some massive load increase on the switch gear in the local exchange. They limit it because ISP's don't want to spend money on actually dealing with the traffic properly doing the requisite constant upgrades... so they stop the customers from using the services they pay for to save cash.
Omnituens 3rd August 2007, 00:00 Quote
im with BT, i get 4234kb/s down and 382 up

still pricey imo, since i have to pay line retal on the phone like, and i dont even have a phone.
Bluephoenix 3rd August 2007, 03:43 Quote
we get some nasty deals over here in the US too.

verizon FiOS may be fast but its throttled and even blocks some traffic completely (bittorrent)


I'm with Comcast and get 9638 kbps down, 2365 kbps up
skunkmunkey 3rd August 2007, 08:06 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by mikeuk2004
Im with AOL and I was on the Platinum package which was £29.99 a month for unlimited 8mb and all was great

When I went to cancell a few months back they said I could keep the same package for £9,99. However I now have slow conecetion and wish I cancelled.

When I check my router, some days it is conected at 7mb and others its 8mb. I now can barely get web pages to open as the internet is so slow and its getting worse. I have a suposedly 8mb connection but its slower than dialup. I can do PC gaming anymore because of the lagg where as both me and my bro used to play together online with no lag. When we lived in a student house a few years back there were 8 of use sharing a 1mb connection fine for gaming and now 1 of us struggle on a 8mb going solo.

I do speed tests and I am currently getting comparable with 512kb. My upload speed is almost spot on with my download speed now.

What can I do???? Im paying for 8mb getting 512kb and stuck in a new 12 month contract

mate, I had that same problem. Just call them, demand to be put throught to their disconnections team. Explain to them that you were mis-sold. If they wont do anything tell them you will have to report it to trading standards and OFCOM. It took me an hour or so to do it but they eventually gave me my MAC.
Cupboard 3rd August 2007, 12:19 Quote
Everyone go with Tesco! We have 512kb broadband, and we actually get that, even though we live miles from the exchange:)
its not the fastest ever, though it is what it is advertised.

unfortunately at school we have been sharing a 10meg line between about 2000ppl, it really crawls :(
Shadow_101 3rd August 2007, 13:24 Quote
Is anyone with sky for broadband? Just been on the phone with them, I’m thinking of signing up for there 16MB package, which only £10 ontop of sky TV. Little bit concerned now how fast it will actually be?
samkiller42 3rd August 2007, 13:28 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shadow_101
Is anyone with sky for broadband? Just been on the phone with them, I’m thinking of signing up for there 16MB package, which only £10 ontop of sky TV. Little bit concerned now how fast it will actually be?

Ive not heard any thing good about sky broadband to be honest.

Sam
samkiller42 3rd August 2007, 13:43 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by SteveyG
samkiller42 said 896kbps, not 896kBps. b = bits, B = bytes. Also he said connection speeds, not download speeds

You'd be lucky to get 448 kilobytes per second upload speed on ADSL as it currently stands ;)


You can end your contract prematurely with Tiscali with no cancellation charge if you break their fair usage policy three times. They then allow you to get your MAC for free :)

I did actually just copy the information stright from the router config (Netgear), It wasnt made up.

Here is more information:
ADSL Link Downstream Upstream
Connection Speed 896 kbps 448 kbps
Line Attenuation 63.5 db 31.5 db
Noise Margin 9.7 db 13.0 db

To me that is all garble as i dont understand any of it other than the connection speed.

Sam
completemadness 3rd August 2007, 14:43 Quote
Quote:
A BT spokesman told BBC News that “Virtually no-one will get [8Mbps broadband]. The laws of physics start applying as soon as it leaves the exchange and you would have to live on top of the exchange to get the full 8 megabits.” Interestingly, only one in ten of the Which? members surveyed thought that a broadband service advertised as “up to 8Mbps” actually thought they’d get that speed.
Well as people right next to the exchange don't even get 8Mbit Internet, isn't it a bit odd to advertise it "up to 8mb"

Anyway with BT's competence I'm surprised any of us have broadband at all

I'm on an "Up to 8mb" plan and people have estimated i would get 4mb, but i get about 2mb max, when BT aren't throttling the connection that is (because, ofc they cant actually supply everyone with the speed they pay for because they are too cheap to put in the infrastructure)

I can understand the "up to 8mb" line though, its hard to send out an ad to people who could live 1 meter from the exchange, or 10 miles from the exchange
However, when you phone up to decide, they can give you an estimate on your actual possible line speed
Seraphim Works 3rd August 2007, 18:05 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by samkiller42
I did actually just copy the information stright from the router config (Netgear), It wasnt made up.

Here is more information:
ADSL Link Downstream Upstream
Connection Speed 896 kbps 448 kbps
Line Attenuation 63.5 db 31.5 db
Noise Margin 9.7 db 13.0 db

To me that is all garble as i dont understand any of it other than the connection speed.

Sam

To be honest samkiller42, that's as fast as you're going to get at the moment with a line attenuation as high as that. Above 60db, you're basically looking at 512kbps, so the fact you get that is pretty damn impressive. All I can suggest is to make sure that your router is plugged into your master socket, that you have good adsl filters, and that's about all you can do.

With figures like that, the max that line will give you is 965kbps, and that probably wouldn't be stable either.
Bauul 3rd August 2007, 18:58 Quote
Ah it's kind of predicatable they run this fast, the phone system in the UK is so old anyway...

though I would just like to point out that my download speed is 56352 kb/s.

That's right.
http://www.speedtest.net/result/164833695.png

In all respects. OWNED
yodasarmpit 3rd August 2007, 19:16 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shadow_101
Is anyone with sky for broadband? Just been on the phone with them, I’m thinking of signing up for there 16MB package, which only £10 ontop of sky TV. Little bit concerned now how fast it will actually be?
You can take what I say with a pinch of salt if you like, I work for Sky.

I have a good connection with them, just under 7meg on the 8meg package, since November I have had one downtime of a couple of hours.
P2P traffic is heavily shaped/throttled, but if you are using bit-torrent, encryption solves that.
All I can say is that from my experience they have been good, although cust service is not an issue for me (internal email)

The thing with Sky, is the same with any ISP it all depends on your line attenuation i.e. internal wiring and distance from the exchange.

If I were to recommend anyone else it would be Nildram, I was with them before Sky and they were as close to perfect as I have experienced.
jl8080 3rd August 2007, 19:29 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bauul
Ah it's kind of predicatable they run this fast, the phone system in the UK is so old anyway...

though I would just like to point out that my download speed is 56352 kb/s.

That's right.
http://www.speedtest.net/result/164833695.png

In all respects. OWNED

So who is your ISP then?
iwog 3rd August 2007, 20:51 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bauul
Ah it's kind of predicatable they run this fast, the phone system in the UK is so old anyway...

though I would just like to point out that my download speed is 56352 kb/s.

That's right.
http://www.speedtest.net/result/164833695.png

In all respects. OWNED

:( sticker for you but thats only 7044kBs..... Wait 7meg of the web is great, how'd you get that!?
steveo_mcg 3rd August 2007, 21:40 Quote
I was thinking of moving from VM, with all the little things they've been doing since ditching blueyonder they have started to urk me. However reading the article and the posts here i think i'll stay put for now, at least i'm getting what i'm paying for.
mikeuk2004 3rd August 2007, 22:21 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by jl8080
So who is your ISP then?

From the speed meter in his post it looks like UKerna whoever they are.
leexgx 4th August 2007, 01:03 Quote
i happy with NTL my self (now virgin) i know about the maybe little lame limits thay inpose

between 16:00 to 00:00
2mb/4mb/20mb service
if you download- 350mb/750mb/3gb
it goes down to 1mb/2mb/5mb for 4 hrs from when its trigered (including if as started at 23:59 it last 4 hrs)

on 2mb service it be very annoying, 4mb not so much but you have to consider how much you can still download on 20mb 130gb at least an day you do 2gb/5gb/40gb on some/most ISP you get charged per gb or get the internet speed droped to modem speeds or lose your internet connection

ADSL is hit and miss and if i moved house i ask locals to see what internet speeds i got if i did need high speed bb not you 2mb stuff or make sure you got cable around thay can guaranty 2/4 or 20mb bb due to cables that come strate to your house
alextwo 4th August 2007, 12:17 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by mikeuk2004
From the speed meter in his post it looks like UKerna whoever they are.

United Kingdom Education and Research Networking Association

AKA a university connection :)
cpemma 4th August 2007, 16:52 Quote
After lots of adverse comments on the "real" speeds from "up to 8Mb" packages, I decided to stick with the cheaper 2Mb. Just checked, UK server 1893Kbps, New York 1746, California 1821. No grumbles. And that's Pipex.
Bluephoenix 5th August 2007, 02:20 Quote
just got back to uni and checked my connection there

90530 kbps down, 60710 kbps up
alex87 5th August 2007, 12:11 Quote
I've been with a few ISP's, all at different locations and i've always been satisfied with speed. My parents have an up to 8mb/s connection with BT, and you can generally get 700kb/s through (although at peak times this is cut down to about 200kb/s if you're lucky). Last year, in my university house we had Pipex Max, and could pull down between 800-850kb/s (not at peak times though).
I've just moved into my new place, and have signed up with bethere, which is up to 24mb/s. My router is synced at 17,269kbps, and I can get 1,950kb/s easily at any time of the day.
cpemma 5th August 2007, 14:15 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by alex87
...have signed up with bethere, which is up to 24mb/s. My router is synced at 17,269kbps, and I can get 1,950kb/s easily at any time of the day.
Check your units, I average 1,850kb/s on my 2Mb/s connection... :p
Quote:

Internet Provider: PIPEX INTERNET LTD
Total Tests Taken: 6
Fastest Download: 1874 kb/s
Fastest Upload: 244 kb/s
Average Download: 1849 kb/s
Average Upload: 235 kb/s
jjsyht 5th August 2007, 22:27 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by alextwo
Because that would be false advertising. The current ADSL equipment is capable of speeds up to 8mb/s though. It's not the ISPs fault really just a limitation of the technology available.

Broadband with up to 10Gbps*

*10Gbps is however never acheivable because of the laws of Human intelligence... which is, Humans are incabable of delivering services which they dont know how to produce.

Next step is legally advertise 10Gbps by acquiring 10Gbps equipments, but still giving crap speed by keeping shitty cables :(
kitt 6th August 2007, 13:48 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bauul
Ah it's kind of predicatable they run this fast, the phone system in the UK is so old anyway...

though I would just like to point out that my download speed is 56352 kb/s.

That's right.
http://www.speedtest.net/result/164833695.png

In all respects. OWNED

JANET i assume?
Bauul 6th August 2007, 15:30 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by kitt
JANET i assume?

Maybe...
completemadness 6th August 2007, 18:25 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by jjsyht
Broadband with up to 10Gbps*

*10Gbps is however never acheivable because of the laws of Human intelligence... which is, Humans are incabable of delivering services which they dont know how to produce.

Next step is legally advertise 10Gbps by acquiring 10Gbps equipments, but still giving crap speed by keeping shitty cables :(
i don't think that's quite fair

its like saying, at your new house the ocean will be 3m deep - well wont that fluctuate, wont it depend which house along the beach you are in
I can see why they say "up to 8mb/s" but i think there should also be a "call for a firm estimate of your speed" tacked on the end
DougEdey 6th August 2007, 18:30 Quote
The thing is, this is only a problem with BT lines. Cable does not experience this at all.
Shielder 7th August 2007, 09:05 Quote
I get an average of 600kBps and I have had over 800 at times. I'm with UKFSN (an Entanet reseller) and I pay £20 for 30GB peak time limit and 300GB of off peak limits. Have a look at this forum for some user experiences (am I allowed to do this? If not, I'll delete the link). I live about a mile or so from the exchange (Northwich) so I wouldn't expect this sort of speed.

Andy
iwog 7th August 2007, 14:26 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by DougEdey
The thing is, this is only a problem with BT lines. Cable does not experience this at all.

This is one of the reasons why i'll put up with the crap from VM/NTL you get more of what you pay for.
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