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ISP Gigaclear Cuts and Refreshes UK FTTP Rural Broadband Prices

Mon, Sep 17th, 2018 (10:15 am) - Score 3,301
gigaclear fibre optic bridge work

Rural fibre optic ISP Gigaclear has today refreshed their line-up of packages, not least by scrapping their old 50Mbps, 100Mbps and 200Mbps tiers in favour of an entry-level 30Mbps service and generally cheaper prices all the way of up their top 900Mbps FTTP home broadband plan. The installation fee is also now free.

Until now Gigaclear, which is aiming to cover 350,000 rural premises across the United Kingdom with their Gigabit capable Fibre-to-the-Premises (FTTP) broadband network by the end of 2021 (currently 65,000 premises passed), has generally been one of the more pricey “full fibre” providers (depending upon your perspective).

However the higher cost of their service, particularly in terms of one-off installation charges, was never a huge surprise because it’s notoriously expensive for a commercial operator to deploy FTTP into rural areas (i.e. smaller and sparser communities make it difficult to gain a viable return on the investment).

According to Gigaclear, connecting rural properties requires them to dig “six times more land compared to connecting urban properties” (urban average is 12m of dig per property compared to a rural average of 75m), meaning the cost of delivering ultrafast broadband to these communities is significantly more.

Suffice to say that we weren’t expecting any price cuts from Gigaclear, even in the face of growing competition on the FTTP side of the market. Nevertheless their latest package refresh has not only delivered a cheaper rental but they’ve also removed the standard installation fee for most subscribers (95% of orders are standard installs), although the one-off activation fee still applies but it’s currently just £30 on the fastest tiers.

Mike Surrey, CEO of Gigaclear, said:

“When compared to urban areas, we need to deal with additional costs to build new infrastructure in an environment that makes it difficult to lay the fibre optic cables. However, as we expand we can create economies of scale and through these price changes, we are ensuring that any savings we encounter are shared with both new and existing customers.

We are constantly reviewing our products and services to make sure we are delivering value for customers. We recognise that having fast, reliable broadband is essential in most modern homes, and ensuring the communities we serve are better connected is a key priority for us. In the pursuit of making high quality connectivity accessible to more people, we are delighted to launch our new broadband packages – offering more speed for less money.”

Previously the ISP offered quite a large selection of different unlimited symmetric speed packages, but these have all now been replaced by three simple options: 30Mbps, 300Mbps and 900Mbps on an 18 month contract term (previously it was 15 months). The jump in speed between each tier is significant but the jump in price is not, which is an important consideration.

Go 30
Ideal for smaller households
30Mbps upload/download

PRICE: £35 per month

Free Standard Install & One-time £120 Activation

Go 300
Ideal for multi-user and multiple-device home
300Mbps upload/download

PRICE: £45 per month

Free Standard Install & One-time £30 Activation

Go 900
Ideal for multi-users, homeworkers and gamers
900Mbps upload/download

PRICE: £75 per month

Free Standard Install & One-time £30 Activation

Apparently the £30 activation fee is an introductory offer and will come to an end on 28th February 2019. In order to benefit from this discount you have to enter the promotion code GO during the online checkout process or when ordering over the phone.

NOTE: At present the refreshed packages / prices are only being mentioned for new customers. We are checking to see if existing subscribers can re-contract to benefit from the new tiers and will report back.

UPDATE 11:37am

We’ve been told that Gigaclear is also inviting existing customers to take advantage of increased speed for a reduced price available with its new products.

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Mark Jackson
By Mark Jackson
Mark is a professional technology writer, IT consultant and computer engineer from Dorset (England), he is also the founder of ISPreview since 1999 and enjoys analysing the latest telecoms and broadband developments. Find me on Twitter, , Facebook and Linkedin.
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7 Responses
  1. Graham Long

    Just been told by Gigaclear sales line that existing customers will have the option of staying with the existing old tariffs or switching to any of the new ones when their contract comes up for renewal. They also say an email will go out to existing customers shortly explaining the options.

    • Daniel

      Gigaclear told me I could not move to the new tariff and we literally just had our line installed a week ago. However they subsequently called me back without prompt and said that indeed I could move over.

    • Surprisingly generous. Most ISPs don’t allow you to shift until out of the original contract. On the other hand I’d assume you’re technically within the traditional cooling off period, which means that strictly speaking you could have cancelled and then re-contracted, had they refused.

  2. Peter

    So you are telling me that while previously I indeed got a choice of a whole range of speeds (I’m on 50Mbps and was on 100Mbps)
    Now I’m only to get three – 30 300 or nearly 1G
    and this “simplification” is heralded as an improvement?
    Really?

    Hutbers law applies – any much heralded improvement from a corporate supplier masks a actual deterioration in service.

  3. Fastman

    i assume that a hard economics , cost for 30 300 and 1G will be significantly different due to the amount of backhaul required for each (I assume based on the Backhaul costs and other stuff so looks like they have simplified a figure to be superfast (could not be any lower than 30 as they would not be paid on it under BDUK)

  4. Rory Witham

    The package seem to have some flaws.
    Maybe it’s up selling? See most users use around 10mbs per device.

    The last mile providers were always a bit hard and the scam fronmost if not all is a lure speed which they refuse to provide, such as twisted pairs to make or meet the ‘sale speed’.

    Most fibre is not so. But as a wisp and developer, it seems rather a over spend and over worked issue.
    I ran rural tests or 250mbs and lower speed when most only had 128kbs as a maximum. My last mile was 8-35 miles. And a clear easy and effective system (with extras).

    I find this ‘tech’ application odd to say the least.
    Business sites (industrial estate) would be benefit from such services, but they’re loosing out so much which could offer more for less..

  5. AnotherTim

    I wonder whether the change has been partly prompted in part by Gigaclear’s resellers. I spoke to a couple of them a while ago and they said that the wholesale price charged was restricting the offers they could make. I also wonder whether there will be any forthcoming changes to their business package. I’m hoping they will be more competitively priced by the time Gigaclear get around to my area.

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