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UPDATE2 UK ISP TalkTalk Cut Entry Level Unlimited Broadband Price to £2.50

Wednesday, September 25th, 2013 (8:01 am) - Score 2,525

Budget Internet and phone provider TalkTalk has launched its newly rebranded ‘Essentials’ package, which is now called Simply Broadband, alongside totally unlimited usage and all from a standard price of just £2.50 a month (down from £7.50). But there are a few important things missing.

The move, which appears designed to take on the ISPs similarly cheap rivals (e.g. Tesco and Primus Saver), will surely come as a surprise so soon after the ISP hiked the cost of its old ‘Essentials’ package from £6.50 to £7.50 a month (here).

On the other hand the provider has quietly culled its free phone calls feature and discounts from the new package, which is largely in recognition of the fact that most of us now make our calls via a mobile. But you’ll still have to pay for Line Rental at £15.40 a month (note: this reduces to the equivalent of £9.50 a month if you pay 12 months in advance) and calls are at a standard rate (plus a 15p connection fee).

Simply Broadband Features
* Unlimited usage allowance (FUP)
* FREE TalkTalk to TalkTalk calls (up to a max of 180 mins per call then redial)
* £20 Limit on standard monthly call charges
* FREE Wireless Router
* FREE HomeSafe online security
* FREE Connection
* 12 month contract

As usual customers can still add Anytime UK Calls via a “Boost” from £5.50 extra a month or 100 Mobile Minutes for an extra £3 a month, among various other boosts for international calls etc. The providers up to 38Mbps capable Superpowered Fibre Broadband (FTTC) upgrade is also much more prominent now but still costs an extra £10 a month as before.

Interestingly TalkTalk says that they will put a limit on your standard monthly call charges in order “to help you manage your bills“. This Call Limit has been set at £20 a month and “if you exceed the call limit your line will be barred from making outgoing calls (excluding calls to the emergency services)“. The terms also state that customers “remain liable for call charges in excess of the £20 limit“.

In terms of competition, it might be worth remembering that the similar packages from Tesco and Primus Saver still come with free UK evening and weekend calls.

UPDATE 8:17am

Just spoken to TalkTalk and they’ve also noted that the price reduction when paying for line rental 12 months in advance (currently the equivalent of £9.50 a month) will rise to £10.50 from Sunday (i.e. £126 for 12 months).

UPDATE 9:40am

The ISP confirms that their old ‘Essentials’ package has now morphed into a new lower-cost and YouView (IPTV) based Essentials TV option, which attracts a headline price of £7.50 per month (this includes their new low-cost YouView set-top-box that removes the ability to record TV [PVR]).

Dido Harding, CEO of TalkTalk, said:

This is TalkTalk doing what it does best, giving consumers access to exciting new products at unbeatable prices and the launch of Essentials TV underpins our role as Britain’s fastest growing TV service. Each week thousands more homes are signing up to YouView from TalkTalk because of our great value offering. TalkTalk is at an exciting stage of its growth and momentum is only increasing.”

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