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Sky UK Rebrand ISP Packages – Hints at Ultrafast Broadband Plans UPDATED

Tuesday, May 14th, 2019 (12:01 am) - Score 23,526
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UK ISP Sky Broadband (Comcast) will today rebrand their existing range of ADSL2+ and FTTC based broadband and phone packages. On top of that they’ll be introducing some new add-ons and the information suggests that they’re preparing to launch three new “ultrafast broadband” plans (150Mbps upwards).

At present Sky sells two primary packages to consumers using their LLU and Openreach based network, Sky Broadband Unlimited (11Mbps – ADSL2+) and Sky Fibre Max (59Mbps – FTTC / VDSL2+). Some other packages do also exist under the hood, but these two are the ones that Sky Broadband tends to widely promote.

However the forthcoming arrival of Sky’s new “Ultrafast” (100Mbps+) speed plans, which as we’ve previously reported will make use of FTTP and possibly also G.fast technology via Openreach’s (BT) national network (here and here), means that the ISP needs to refresh their line-up and we now know what this will look like.

Firstly, Sky Broadband’s entry-level Sky Broadband Unlimited (ADSL2+) service will be rebranded to Sky Broadband Essential, while Sky Fibre Max is to become Sky Broadband Superfast (both 40Mbps and 80Mbps FTTC tiers will be sold under this title) and in the near future we’re going to get the new Sky Broadband Ultrafast plans (three FTTP / G.fast tiers will fall under this giving max rates of 160Mbps, 330Mbps and 1Gbps (e.g. the 160Mbps tier will be promoted as 150Mbps average)).

NOTE: Sadly we haven’t been given any further details about the new Ultrafast plans, only to confirm that they exist, but we know their Openreach based FTTP launch is due in H2 2019 (here).

Plus, for an additional +£2.50 per month on an 18 month contract (£5 thereafter), customers will now be able to add Sky Broadband Boost and this includes the following features (see below).

Sky Broadband Boost Features (+£2.50)

Broadband Buddy – Customers can manage their family’s screen time in & out of their home via the Sky Buddy app (iOS and Android); even “pause the internet” (may explain their recent DNS shenanigans). The app allows parents to monitor family online internet usage, including internet history. It also includes location tracking. Parents will be notified on their own device if children uninstall Sky Buddy.

Proactive Service – Sky will find & fix broadband issues so customers don’t have to.

Premium Service Visits – Flexible engineer visits to suit customers; even evenings or weekends.

Mobile Data for outages – If broadband cuts out, Sky will put 2GB in the customer’s Sky Mobile account free of charge.

At launch Sky said they will auto-add the Boost to all their broadband packages (e.g. initial prices will be £22.50 for Essential and £29.50 for Superfast), which we assume only applies to new customers (checking now). We understand this add-on will in the future become optional.

Finally, there’s also a new Sky Broadband WiFi Optimisation service being launched (costing either £120 per year or £12 per month for 10 months). When taking this a Sky Tech Team expert will visit the customer’s home, to adjust the configuration of the Sky equipment and provide any additional equipment needed to ensure excellent WiFi in every corner of their home.

Stephen van Rooyen, CEO of Sky UK & Ireland, said:

“At Sky, we connect families to content they love so it is our responsibility to make sure they can do this safely. Sky Broadband Buddy is an easy way to manage and monitor children’s internet usage, and pausing the internet is a great way to ensure you can enjoy family time free from screen time – for both children and adults!”

Now if you read our earlier version of this article (i.e. you were up very early) then you will have been lucky enough to see Sky’s illustration showing their new ultrafast plans, albeit without much detail. The fact these are coming is not new (reported on it several times) but sadly we’re not allowed to show that image again, even though it didn’t hold any surprises. Sorry folks. We’ve asked Sky to sort out their messaging.

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Mark Jackson
By Mark Jackson
Mark is a professional technology writer, IT consultant and computer engineer from Dorset (England), he also founded ISPreview in 1999 and enjoys analysing the latest telecoms and broadband developments. Find me on Twitter, , Facebook and Linkedin.
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44 Responses
  1. Avatar CarlT

    Sky just got my attention. This is good: especially the 1Gb ultrafast. With their scale and network reach Sky can offer this without using BT Wholesale so it might be realistic for power users.

    • Avatar adslmax

      Only if your exchange support it eg: 1Gb Ultrafast FTTP

    • Avatar AnotherTim

      And Sky broadband is not available everywhere – they simply don’t provide any broadband at all in my area, not even ADSL2+.

    • Avatar David Drozdowski

      What scale and network reach? They don’t have their own infrastructure. What 1Gb Ultrafast? Only BT Ultrafast 1 & 2 give a 100Mbps guarantee, i.e. not even Virgin. So Gigaclear? Hardly any infrastructure.

    • Avatar Badem

      @David
      SKY were joint venture in York so 1GB assets there to be utilised?

    • Avatar Sarah

      @David Drozdowski that’s odd – their 100Gbps UK wide backbone is definitely theirs! As is all the kit in the exchanges..

    • Avatar Mark

      @David, sky own their own backbone network, pop sites, exchange equipment, the lot. They bought it all off Easynet and dumped the business broadband part of them.
      As for FTTP then I’d imagine they’ll be using the new Openreach scheme for this? Don’t know if that means they own it or not though?

  2. Avatar Marty

    Will be interesting to look into the hardware side for the G.fast products. Hopefully the hardware isn’t as cheap as last time and include more than two internet ports for their router.

    • Avatar Stan

      I agree! Decent hardware and four ports ease Sky. Then you may finally get my broadband away from Richard.

  3. Avatar vpacalypse

    Any word on hardware upgrades (as in a new router)?

    • Avatar Marty

      It’s likely unless sky decide have Huawei mt992 modems instead of integrated G.fast solution in their new router’s

  4. Avatar Lyncol

    They appear to have dropped …’Fibre’ from their new product descriptions.

  5. Avatar Vpacalypse

    Could any of this also mean sky q without need for a satellite dish?

  6. Avatar Patrick

    I’ve a great idea why not get the broadband there already provide to work a it should . If I watch a video on fb it’s like an old cartoon flip book .. 3 weeks ago I reported it again been going on for months .. to top it of I now have the privilege of paying extra for a service that doesn’t work properly as the bill and gone up .. contract ends so will my time as a sky customer..

  7. Avatar Joe

    You big Tease Mark!

  8. Avatar Andy

    What gets me with sky is that we still don’t get WiFi calling. Which at todays standards is unacceptable. Come on sky pull ya finger out what’s the problem EE do it why not you !!!

  9. Avatar Gaz

    Sky do WiFi calling, I’m with sky and have it all the time, have you checked your device as you may need to switch it on?

  10. Avatar Stewart

    I think Andy means mobile broadband. Like ee they do have a mobile broadband for my caravan for example.

    • Avatar Ken

      Errrrr ‘wifi calling’ refers to being able to make mobile phone calls over wifi. Nothing to do with mobile broadband.

  11. Avatar Ixel

    Wait, so Sky are planning to sell Openreach’s 1 Gbps FTTP service? Wow, if so! However, I’m weary of dealing with Sky. I’ve had two bad incidents with them which forced me to leave but it wasn’t easy to leave either. Plus I’m not a super fan of their customer service team in regards to broadband issues, especially when dealing with them for another client I might be doing a local computer/network repair job for.

    I’ll keep an eye on this though, but will be cautious at the same time. Another caveat I’m not sure of is whether they do CGNAT, which I don’t want. I imagine they don’t support a block of static IP’s either, which would stop me considering them entirely if they didn’t offer this option.

    • Avatar Mike

      Do you mind telling us what those two incidents were?

    • Avatar Sarah

      Be grateful you can get it! some of us have to use mobile as no other decent option!

    • Avatar Ixel

      Mike: Basically to keep things short and as simple as possible, first time round I wanted to simply cancel Sky TV and such as I was out of contract, but I kept getting the run around with excuses like system errors and still getting charged. Eventually I was able to leave but wasn’t compensated sadly (e.g. refunded for some or all of the time I lost after initially requesting cancellation). This was many many years ago.

      Second time, after going via their campaign called ‘kiss and make up’, I moved address later on and they assured me the broadband would be transferred over by the time I move in. It wasn’t. I contacted them and they made a mess up and wanted me to wait another 2-3 weeks without internet as they needed to cancel at the old address or some nonsense. So after some hassle I managed to get the contract terminated at no cost to me, took a month or so though to get this sorted out after being given the run around and some threatening letters. I went to another ISP at that point (BE Broadband back then if I recall correctly).

  12. Avatar Mark T

    Any idea on the pricing or when its going to launch yet?

  13. Avatar Sky

    Sky have pulled out of Ultrafast 160/330/1000 until end of the year. More fool you Sky.
    ThinkBroadband also removed off the headline press news too.

    Something is fishy going on at Sky?

    • More poorly managed marketing prep on their part. I don’t think they actually meant to officially tell us about their ultrafast plans until later in the year, yet it slipped out in the communication, but it’s one of those ‘worst kept secret’ sort of things now.

  14. Avatar john fox

    Only BT Virgin and Vodafone have their own Data Network.. The rest including Sky have to use BTs.. Which is far from adequate..

  15. Avatar BigJames

    I’d love to see that image from this morning if anyone has it.

  16. Avatar Az

    The Ireland website for sky has the 100mb and 1gb page up for broadband.

  17. Avatar max360

    I’m aware of that. I posted an example, how the UK speed might look.

    • Avatar CarlT

      Appreciate that but the environment is quite different in Ireland so, sadly, it can’t even be used as a guide. The pricing depends on the costs to Sky and those in turn on the wholesale offerings they are using.

      Openreach FTTP is quite a bit more expensive than those prices would require, and the 1G they would need an alternative network supplier as Openreach 1G costs £80+VAT a month just to get between customer and exchange.

  18. Avatar Donfor

    Only recently reached dizzy heights averaging 59mbps/WiFi from 63 mps upgrade Ethernet.
    Think I’m excellent prospect to subscribe to entry level UltraFast 160mps package from sky.]
    P.s. WifiCalling from skin mobile hasn’t yet reached iphones-not sure if this is sky trying to reach agreement with Apple or if there is any technical reason why it isn’t activated on apple devices.
    Visual voicemail is working.

  19. Avatar Donfor

    No editing option,correct previous-that’;s Sky mobile! Which hasn’t reached iPhones.

  20. Avatar John

    So Sky’s FTTP entry level is 160megs? Not necessary for most domestic consumers and probably too pricey also…

    • Avatar John

      Not necessarily. I think that’s perhaps reading too much in to how Mark has worded the article (only mentioning FTTC when discussing Sky SuperFast).

      Sky Broadband Superfast at 40/10 and 80/20 could be delivered over FTTC and FTTP.

      Just as Sky Broadband Ultrafast will be delivered over G.Fast or FTTP.

      I haven’t read anything from Sky to say they will only sell FTTP on their Ultrafast packages.

      OpenReach sell the same product speeds on FTTP as they do on FTTC so it would have to be a deliberate decision by Sky to not offer SuperFast tiers in FTTP areas.

      I expect Sky to offer the same SuperFast and Ultrafast products in FTTP areas just as they will in copper areas.

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