Monday, 7 July 2014

Changing ISP...

BT just sent round a reminder for me to renew my annual "line rental saver"...  it seems to have gone up significantly - £159.84 (so equivalent of £13.32/month) and its kicked me into having a look at my options.  Currently I pay BT for the POTS line and then UK Free Software Network (an EntaNet reseller) get £23.70 for my internet connection.  The internet connection is a plain old ADSL2+ connection* with a /29 static IPv4 subnet and a /56 static IPv6 subnet and is currently synced at about 6.7Mbps down, 960Kbps up.

(* It's supposedly ADSL2+, but my TP Link ADSL modem won't resync properly when the noise floor increases, so I actually have to run it in G.DMT mode...  There isn't a huge difference in speed though).

So anyway, all in I'm basically paying £37.02/month for POTS and internet.  The only reason I need the POTS bit at all is because it's required for the ADSL connection - I get free evening/weekend calls from BT, but that's not really worth the cost of the line.  In fact, I think it's bonkers that BT are putting their prices up, given the increasingly wide selection of alternative providers.  SIPGate, for example, charge 1.19p/minute for geographic calls, and even my pay as you go mobile is only 3p/minute.

Unfortunately, UKFSN don't appear to do the POTS bit themselves, expecting you to use BT for that, but I have been pretty happy with them so I've been looking at other EntaNet resellers.  One that has stood out is FalconNet - they are offering FTTC internet connections (40Mbps down, 10Mbps up) for £22 and POTS for £9.50, totalling £31.50/month.  Their installation cost is £96 - given that my "line rental saver" has to be paid up front, a £96 up-front cost doesn't seem bad at all - I basically end up in credit for the first 8 months.  I fired off an email to FalconNet and they confirm that they do IPv6 and a /32 static IPv4 subnet.

This is pretty compelling: amortised over 18 months, I get a much faster internet connection for about the price I'm already paying and everything after that is a saving; and no more up-front annual fees.  I just lose the free evenings and weekends calls - FalconNet charge 1.14p/min for geographic calls, so the amount I'm saving can pay for about 8 hours of calls a month.  Although truth be told, for the sake of 0.05p/minute I'll probably just use SIPgate (or another SIP gateway).

Seems like a no brainer.

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