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NOW Broadband Finally Launch UK Full Fibre Plan, With a Catch UPDATE

Thursday, Feb 8th, 2024 (8:13 am) - Score 6,440
Now-Broadband-UK-ISP-Router

Customers of Sky UK’s sibling NOW Broadband ISP sub-brand, which is perhaps better known for its associated NOW TV streaming service, may be pleased to know that the provider has finally launched a full fibre (FTTP) package on Openreach’s network. But there’s only one option and to get it you’ll be re-directed to Sky Broadband.

The new package is called ‘NOW FULL FIBRE 100‘ and, much as the name suggests, it offers new customers average download speeds of 100Mbps with a Sky Hub router and Sky Talk (pay as you go) for £25 per month (plus £10 one-off activation and £9.95 postage) on an 18-month minimum term. The standard out-of-contract price for this package is £44 per month, but customers who re-contract will only pay £39 per month.

NOTE: The estimated upload speeds for the new package are 18-19Mbps.

However, rather than fully integrate the new package into NOW’s own-branded router and portal, customers who opt to order the service, which is subtitled “powered by Sky“, will instead find themselves going through the unusual route of being redirected to Sky’s online ordering system. At this point they’re also offered a selection of Sky’s other full fibre packages, but only the NOW branded package maintains its special price advantage vs Sky’s equivalent. In addition, customers who take this package will be offered a Sky Stream TV box, rather than a NOW TV box and service.

Speaking of price, Sky’s equivalent 100Mbps package is currently being offered at the slightly more expensive price point of £28 per month on an 18-month minimum term, albeit rising to £43 per month post-contract. Sky’s package also attracts a one-off £5 refundable setup charge for new customers.

Quite why NOW Broadband has opted to launch their first full fibre package this way, we don’t know. But we assume it’s a way to save money on the development and implementation costs of properly integrating the FTTP product. On the other hand, if they aren’t willing to put in the time and effort to do it properly, then that doesn’t exactly send the strongest of signals for the future of the NOW Broadband and TV brand.

Credits to one of our readers (Ken) for spotting this development.

UPDATE 2:25pm

We did ask NOW why they’d chosen to launch the package in this way and received the following response.

A NOW spokesperson told ISPreview:

“We’re always exploring ways to enhance broadband services for our customers, so on 7 February, we introduced NOW Full Fibre 100, powered by Sky. This new Full Fibre Broadband service offers faster speeds, increased reliability, and great value to our customers. With average download speeds of 100Mb/s, it is ideal for streaming, gaming and working from home.”

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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
21 Responses
  1. Avatar photo RightSaidFred says:

    NOW that’s what I call stupid.

    Seems totally daft.

    1. Avatar photo Matt says:

      Will be retiring the brand I guess.

      NOW is only useful for collaring those sky sports viewers who dont have/want Sky installed. Now that Sky Stream is a thing – it’s likely SKY will try and convert these users to Sky Stream instead, for the extra £££.

    2. Avatar photo No Name says:

      With stream doing 30 day subscription packs it is highly likely it will go.

      I hope the Now TV app replaces Sky Go though as Sky Go really is rubbish.

      Shame it will cost more for existing Now customers but Sky gonna Sky I guess.

    3. Avatar photo Big Dave says:

      The main advantage with Now is that you only have to take the package you want. So in my case I only have the sports bundle.

  2. Avatar photo Ad47uk says:

    In one way I am glad I did not go with them.
    I just did a test to see what they offer me and it is still FTTC, so it seems like they don’t think we can get FTTP here, but we can.

    I still get the odd email from them about their entertainment package or movie package, but now broadband is still 720 unless you pay extra.

    1. Avatar photo Ad47uk says:

      I meant now TV, not broadband

  3. Avatar photo anonymous says:

    Sky Stream = locked down to one address
    Now TV app on various TVs and devices = roam

    I’m ditching Sky Stream as VM just added the missing channels for me to their service which is free for a number of channels and still half the price for the usual Sky/Entertainment ones AND their box is faster and better laid out. Sky Stream firmware has been buggy as hell for me and only got mostly fixed a couple of months ago. “Please wait for the channel to load” was just one bug that many users had and nothing to do with internet connection as that was gig and no issues with anything else streaming on many devices.

    1. Avatar photo Anonymous says:

      I totally agree with this. I’ve had both and currently have Sky Stream. Most of the bugs like you say were only fixed a few weeks ago. Some still exist like it not picking up a Ethernet connection when it comes out of standby and ITVX constantly dying when it goes to ads.

      Virgin Stream by comparison is rock solid. It also let’s you resolution match the content so your TV can upscale between HD/UHD.

    2. Avatar photo anonymous says:

      Yip, I have the Wifi standby bug too. My router turns off Wifi at 1am and turns back on around 6am. The box goes into disconnected mode, it really does not like it, meanwhile anything and everything else is fine with it! Tried the various settings on Stream for “connected standby” to.

  4. Avatar photo Martin says:

    I used to be a big advocate of Now Broadband, using their service myself and also put my parents on them, free phone calls for £20 (then £23.50…) was perfect for them. I switched to an FTTP service elsewhere whilst my parents remained.

    Things have gone downhill massively since I last spoke with them 12m ago. The call centre is now over seas vs in the Sky building (NI?), they deleted out payment details and claimed it was my parents fault, they didn’t notify them they were approaching the end of their contract etc, don’t get me started on how badly they handled bereavement.

    Hard to recommend them anymore, they’re cheap and only tie you to a 12m contract, but the free calls have gone and the service is dire.

  5. Avatar photo Anthony says:

    For some reason, I had it in my head that Sky would offer FTTP through CityFibre for NowTV to allow them to offer low-priced deals. I just picked this idea out of thin air. But it does seem logical as Openreach FTTP is just too expensive.

  6. Avatar photo JP says:

    Can’t see Now Broadband being around much longer personally, doesn’t make sense for Sky to maintaine and manufacture for two brands instead of one.

    1. Avatar photo Anthony says:

      I would say what would be sensible is to have Sky concentrate of FTTP and have NowBroadband for FTTC. This could serve as a distinction between the two brands.

    2. Avatar photo Fibre Scriber says:

      That’s the way it was mainly, although SKY supplied both depending on the exchange area and if Stop Sell was in force. Now Broadband only supplied (FTTC) prior to this announcement. Many customers were asking for (FTTP) from them. It has to be remembered that once 75% of an exchange area can receive (FTTP) and a certain address within can receive it, then you have to go Full Fibre.

  7. Avatar photo Vince says:

    I suspect ‘Now’ isn’t long for this world to be honest, so it’s prob because they ultimately plan to merge it into the main Sky brand.

  8. Avatar photo Fibre Scriber says:

    Be aware if you are with NOW Broadband and phone and are moving to Sky Broadband with phone, it turns out that you can’t keep your telephone number, which you may have had for many years. I found out about this when I was asked to help a friend with a new Sky contract. I filled in the form online including wanting to keep my friends long held home telephone number. All went well and the application was accepted. When the emails arrived outlining the contract details, I found one of the emails said, “this is your new telephone number” Thinking a mistake had been made i phoned Sky and spoke with a guy in the Londonderry call centre, who informed me that it was not possible to port a number within the Sky network, which includes NOW. Would have expected it to have been easier to port the number, not impossible. Something to keep in mind if you are moving from NOW to SKY or vice versa, and want to keep your home phone number.

  9. Avatar photo Fabrizio says:

    It’ll be interesting to know if the sky stream box will run the now tv os which looks like the revamped version on Roku boxes ( even their old branded ones) .

  10. Avatar photo Jim says:

    Lots of reasons why Sky have done the chief being they have an agreement in place with OR to complete provisioning installs exclusively for Sky customers which OR pay them to complete, therefore launching NOW FTTP via Sky gives they more workflow, had they not done this NOW customers would have there provisioning installs completed by KELLYS/QUINN or OR themselves

    1. Avatar photo binary says:

      That does make some sense Jim, though one kinda wonders why Sky (as a company) didn’t negotiate the agreement with Openreach to include not only Sky brand customers but also NOW brand customers.

      (An aside – I assume the agreement is helpful in that Sky can redeploy its Satellite installers to also act as broadband installers.)

    2. Avatar photo John says:

      “Lots of reasons why Sky have done the chief being they have an agreement in place with OR to complete provisioning installs exclusively for Sky customers which OR pay them to complete, therefore launching NOW FTTP via Sky gives they more workflow”

      Have you any more info on that? I wasn’t aware of it.
      Is it only for FTTP or does it also include FTTC conections? And, if FTTC, would it include Now?

    3. Avatar photo Jim says:

      Only FTTP provisions, would not make commercial sense to go after a technology that is being replaced.

      Besides most properties in the UK have FTTC already installed, only really properties too close to exchanges and blocks of flats that didn’t get the agreement/co investment from the leasehold stuck on ADSL lines

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