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ISPA Name Winners of the 2021 UK ISP Internet Industry Awards

Friday, Nov 5th, 2021 (7:30 am) - Score 2,336
ISPA UK ISP Awards Logo 2021

The UK Internet Service Providers Association (ISPA) last night unveiled the winners of their 23rd annual 2021 internet industry and broadband awards, which among other things saw B4RN walk away with the award for “Best Rural ISP“, while CommunityFibre scooped both the “Best Consumer ISP” and “Best Ultrafast ISP” awards.

The winners of last year’s awards event were, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, unveiled online. By comparison, this year marks a return to the old format and thus all of the ISPA awards were handed out at a ceremony in central London, which took place at the Sheraton Grand Park Lane hotel. We’re still not sure about the wisdom of such mass gatherings during a pandemic, but that’s another debate.

The 2021 event also added one new category – “Best Ultrafast ISP,” which was open to any providers with a customer base that included a “majority of ultrafast speeds and products to show real world testing average over 100 Mbps.” Naturally, CommunityFibre’s 3Gbps package and consistently strong performance was hard to beat.

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As usual the awards were all independently judged by a panel of eight industry experts (people from Cloudflare, JISC, Point Topic etc.), while UK ISPs, web hosts and VoIP providers also underwent some “technical testing” (i.e. this usually involves downstream / upstream throughput, HTTP speed, DNS lookup time and ping times etc.). But we don’t get to see the results from that.

The only awkward result was the decision to award “Best VoIP” provider to Voipfone for the third year running, which is despite the significant levels of service disruption observed since the summer, due to repeated DDoS attacks. Admittedly the DDoS might not be their fault, but the persistence of such problems and sporadic level of communication has caused a lot of frustration among their customers. The award seems to ignore that.

According to Twitter, “The judges felt Voipfone deserved this award for their overall approach, including the mix and match approach to hardware support and free services for hundreds of charities.

2021 ISPA UK Award Winners

Best Rural ISP
B4RN

Best Consumer ISP
CommunityFibre

Best Business ISP
Ceberus Networks

Best Ultrafast ISP
Community Fibre

Best VoIP
Voipfone

Best Infrastructure Provider
CityFibre

Best Cyber Security
Plume

Best Customer Service
Exa Networks

Best Hosted Service
Storm Internet

Social Impact Award
CommunityFibre – Free fibre broadband connectivity to isolated households in London

Best Partnership
Exa Networks – for Bradford Champions Group / Bradford Community Champions

Best Customer Solution
Netgem – TV and Wholehome WiFi all in one

Internet Hero
Helen Milner OBE

The Good Things Foundation has been vital in helping promote digital inclusion at a time when the pandemic has made digital literacy crucial to access health information and keep in contact with loved ones. The Good Things Foundation has provided practical support to millions of people to achieve social change. The numbers speak for themselves – 3.5 million people supported to gain digital skills shows the progress made. Their work with Government, ISPs and wider industry has been hugely important to champion a digitally included nation. We believe Helen Milner OBE is absolutely due praise for her work as CEO of the Good Things Foundation.

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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 X (Twitter), Mastodon, Facebook and .
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Comments
2 Responses
  1. Avatar photo Chris Sayers says:

    I’m trying to get my head around these awards, I’ve got mixed feelings for some of the recipients.

  2. Avatar photo RaptorX says:

    I’m surprised that Zen didn’t get anything. They’re a very good ISP and normally win something.

    The real shame is that AAISP never get a look-in, because they’re too small and don’t have the customer base to make up the numbers.

    I didn’t think it was possible to be a fan of an ISP, but it is. An excellent unique feature are the fantastic control pages, plus the superb no BS and super tech savvy customer service from the staff who actually look after the network, not “advisors”. Oh and they answer the phone after a couple of rings too, no annoying menu system that goes round in circles. I could go on with the superlatives. 🙂

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