SSE Broadband Buyers Guide

Broadband and phone from a renewable electricity and gas supplier

  • Low priced phone and broadband services
  • Zero price hikes during the 18 month contract
  • Happiness guarantee - cancel without penalty in the first 60 days
  • Available outside of most providers' low cost areas
  • Same low prices wherever you live
  • No upfront costs in most cases

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SSE Unlimited Fibre Broadband with Line Rental
£22.00 for 18 months
£33.00 thereafter

No upfront cost

  • 18 months reduced fixed price
  • 35Mb average download speed
  • 9Mb average upload speed!
  • Unlimited monthly allowance
  • 60-Day Happiness Guarantee
  • Only pay for the calls you use
  • No activation fee
  • 18 month contract

Buy now

SSE Unlimited Fibre Plus with Line Rental
£26.00 for 18 months
£38.00 thereafter

No upfront cost

  • 18 months reduced fixed price
  • 63Mb average download speed
  • 17Mb average upload speed!
  • Unlimited monthly allowance
  • 60-Day Happiness Guarantee
  • Only pay for the calls you use
  • No activation fee
  • 18 month contract

Buy now

Please note, customers taking out phone & broadband with SSE may be charged an upfront cost for their phone line. If customers don't have a phone line they will need to pay a 'New line provision' charge of £60. If customers need a 'LLU line conversion' to take SSE's phone and broadband service there will be a charge of £36.91.

Reasons to choose SSE

  • Affordable - among the cheapest providers in the UK
  • Phone bundles - choose from a range of call plans, or just pay for what you use
  • High end router - all broadband users get a free Technicolor DWA0120 router with fast performance, strong signal and parental controls
  • Fixed price - SSE guarantees zero price hikes during the 18 month contract term
  • Happiness guarantee - you can cancel your SSE deal within 60 days without penalty if you aren't happy with it
  • No upfront costs - SSE broadband comes without any activation or shipping costs (as long as you've got an LLU phone line installed)
  • 18 months fixed price plans - only changes to VAT or a similar taxes can increase it

Possible downsides

  • No short contracts - all packages are on an 18 month contract
  • Limited extras - the free router is among a handful of free extras
  • Budget provider - may prioritise low price over other considerations

Features at a glance

  • Download speeds average at 35Mb for Fibre and 63Mb for Fibre Plus

  • 18 month contracts, with fixed price guarantee, barring changes to VAT or another relevant tax or levy

  • Unlimited monthly usage, traffic management and fair usage applies

  • Free activation; £60 for new line installation or a £36.91 LLU line conversion charge may apply

  • Customer support by local rate phone or email open 8am to 8pm on weekdays, 8am to 2pm on Saturday, closed Sundays

  • High-performance 802.11ac wireless router using dual 2.4GHz and 5GHz frequencies band steered together for greater stability

  • Only pay for the calls you use on standard bundles◊, Anytime available for an extra fee

  • SSE Broadband have published a Traffic Management Policy

3 stars
  satisfaction rating based on 434 customer ratings since 2018-12-12. See more SSE customer ratings and reviews.

Details last checked on 2019-12-09

Customer Reviews

Sometimes the best way to get a feel for a broadband provider is to read what those who are already customers think of the service they're receiving. Below are all the reviews we've received for SSE.

Customer Ratings Summary

  • Satisfaction
    3 stars
  • Customer Service
    3.3 stars
  • Speed
    2.7 stars
  • Reliability
    2.8 stars

Based on 434 customer ratings since 2018-12-12

Show all time ratings

Add your own review of SSE

Ratings are left by users of our speed test as well as by reviewers. Recent star ratings summarise the last 12 months of ratings or the last 100 placed, whichever is largest.

Reviewer Location Reviewing Date Ratings
Cant fault the actually broadband as ive never had any faults. Mine starts with me and possibly others being ripped off.
Started with moving house,everything went fine.. Smooth changeover, the lot.
until a few months later i rang up to upgrade my broadband.. slightly slower where I live now.
waiting 45 minutes to get through as this is always the case they tell me im already on their fastest speeds.. erm.. obviously not... They dug into it and apparently my package got changed with the house move by who ever done it without notifying me and doing a full change, i.e contract ect so i was never aware. He sneakily upgraded the package so i was getting charged more (probably for his commission) but never actually put it through proper so i never actually got the higher speeds just paid more over the year. Constantly got told I would get a call off sse which never happened. Ive been ringing for the last 2 weeks nearly everyday for an update as to whats happening bearing in mind there is always a 30-1 hour hold times on the phone to be told nothing other than "its being processed". If you've been ripping a customer off that's been with you for a long time you prioritize that problem especially when you've ripped them off instead of worrying about signing up new people for you to potentially do the same to them.
  • Satisfaction
    1 star
  • Customer Service
    1 star
  • Speed
    3 stars
  • Reliability
    5 stars
Manchester SSE  
Avoid!!! worst broadband provider ever frequent speeds of less than 6mps and when we complained told we were getting 11 mbps which was a total joke as we tested speed hundreds of times and never had any where near this.After we complained speeds got worse on average 4.5 mbps and now we are leaving the internet is far far worse/ unuseable if I could give a minus star rating I would avoid at all cost.
  • Satisfaction
    1 star
  • Customer Service
    1 star
  • Speed
    1 star
  • Reliability
    1 star
Taunton SSE  
Ridiculously Slow Broadband and Appalling Customer Service

In early November 2019 I decided to switch to SSE for my ‘phone and broadband service. Since then I have had issues indicating an appalling level of service.

On 07/11/19 I received a welcome e-mail with 2 attached docs, both of which indicated that I was living in Morayshire, the next County. During a ‘phone call on 25/11/19 I was advised that the wrong address would not appear on important letters. On 02/12/19 I received an important letter from SSE again showing the wrong County.

On Sunday 24/11/19, and without any warning from SSE my internet connection with with Plusnet stopped. This was the first indication that any technical action had occurred.

It took me about an hour on 25/11/19 to get thro’ to SSE. I was only then told that the changeover had actually occurred. The letter advising that the ‘phone & broadband start date “will be” 21/11/19 only arrived on 02/12/19.

Similarly I did not receive the wireless router in advance of the change. It was delivered on 27/11/19. I had been without any internet service for three days.

Since setup of my broadband on 27/11/19 my download speed has consistently been below 3Mbs and sometimes lower than the upload speed. Three requests to improve this have, to date been ignored. To avoid long waiting times on the ‘phone, two have been by the on-line query/complaint form and one has been by e-mail to SSE Broadband Enquiries.

Having used broadband for 10 years at, or near, my current Postcode address I know that I can get much higher speed. I am convinced that SSE have artificially degraded my connection and that they have, so far, deprived me of the proper and normal speed available at my address.
  • Satisfaction
    2 stars
  • Customer Service
    1 star
  • Speed
    1 star
  • Reliability
    3 stars
Nairn SSE  
Serious failings in the management of the business and customer service that make it not fit for purpose and not a reliable operator. After receiving an email advising that we would have an ‘upgrade’ to our service, we have been informed that SSE have a ‘known problem’ and hope to be able to rectify the issue within 48 hours or c96 hours from when the problem started. Try calling them? They aren’t available in the evenings until 8am in the morning. No website cover for the big transition project. Try emailing them? A 5 day turn around time? I waited 30 mins to be able to speak to customer services who were useless. DO NOT USE SSE FOR BROADBAND. They are not fit for purpose!
  • Satisfaction
    1 star
  • Customer Service
    1 star
  • Speed
    3 stars
  • Reliability
    1 star
Kingston SSE  
I switched from Sky to SSE it was faster and cheaper, what a mistake, i have been with them for 3 months now and the broadband keeps crashing, up to 30 times a day I sat in one day and watched it. I work on my laptop and every time the broadband goes down i lose everything. But here is the best bit, try and get in touch with customer service. 9 times i have called and i waited up to 45 minutes a call, i have had one email back from them saying call after 6pm, its still the same, no one answered. Customer service is rubbish and so is there broadband..I have told them i will send the router back and cancel my direct debit. Terrible service SSE.
  • Satisfaction
    2 stars
  • Customer Service
    1 star
  • Speed
    3 stars
  • Reliability
    1 star
Peterborough SSE  
WARING! Worst broadband provider.
All the reviews you have read are correct an acurate. Avoid at all costs. You have been warned.
  • Satisfaction
    2 stars
  • Customer Service
    1 star
  • Speed
    2 stars
  • Reliability
    1 star
Reading SSE  
Promised average 35 Mbps speed, but is now always UNDER 4 Mbps!! (When I could still cancel the service, the speed was around 30 Mbps) Constant delays to get the service running, I had to register online FOUR times because of 'technical' errors. The first engineer to install was rude and didn't do it properly, had to get another to re-do it.The customer service was always very nice, but actually, nothing gets done!!! Connection cuts off every few days for no reason. It's a cheap deal because it's a cheap, unreliable service.
  • Satisfaction
    2 stars
  • Customer Service
    2 stars
  • Speed
    1 star
  • Reliability
    2 stars
Portsmouth SSE  
Truly awful. We have been with SSE for years with electric and gas and have never had an issue. Three months ago I asked SSE to supply our broadband. All online stuff was completed and they sent an email asking me to complete my registration.
Now, every week they sand me the same email saying I have not completed my registration and I need to, then they say I am registered and they do not have my full address so I need to reply to the email with my full details. Which I do. This triggers an email that says this email address is not monitored.

A few days later I receive another email reminding me to register for my broadband package.

Three months now without broadband or phone line and if I call them there is a hold message saying it will be over an hour to talk to anyone or I can request a call back. I have requested 4 calls back now and received none.

Truly the worst customer service I have ever seen anywhere. Ever.
  • Satisfaction
    1 star
  • Customer Service
    1 star
  • Speed
    1 star
  • Reliability
    1 star
Suffolk SSE  
Terribly slow broadband, typically takes 10-15 seconds once clicking a link on google to the page opening and often just does nothing and freezes. It may be 50% cheaper than BT but, from my experience, the saving is painful. Personally, I would avoid.
  • Satisfaction
    1 star
  • Speed
    1 star
  • Reliability
    1 star
UK SSE  
At first the service was excellent. At the end of the contract I was robbed. Asked for a new contract. I now find that in the evenings it is so slow I cannot get e-mail. I am supposed to be on a 35Mb/s fibre service. They recently fired a lot of staff, hence the poor service. I have allready switched energy companies. I will switch phone and internet companies as soon as possible. I suspect they have a new boss who is killing the company.
  • Satisfaction
    1 star
  • Customer Service
    1 star
  • Speed
    1 star
  • Reliability
    1 star
Stevenage SSE  

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The reviews published on this page are those of the individual authors who have warrantied that they abide by our review guidelines. Reviews are not the opinion of Broadband.co.uk.

SSE Broadband Buyers Guide - Is SSE right for you?

Can I get SSE?

SSE are best known as an energy provider but their broadband services are available to everyone. You don't need to be an energy customer, and you also don't need to be located in the regions covered by their energy services.

SSE broadband is available wherever there's a BT telephone exchange. In some areas SSE may make savings by using their own equipment installed in the BT telephone exchange, but these savings are shared with all customers. The same standard broadband prices and features are available wherever you live.

SSE Fibre to the cabinet services are also available, to get these both your exchange and street cabinet must have been upgraded to support fibre. This covers more than 95% of UK homes.

You can find out which SSE Broadband products are available where you live with our postcode checker.

What packages are available?

SSE offer standard ADSL and Fibre broadband packages:

  • SSE Unlmited Fibre - the entry level fibre deal with average speeds of 35Mb
  • SSE Fibre Plus - the fastest fibre broadband deal with average speeds of 63Mb

In all cases, the packages are on 18 month fixed price contracts and come with line rental. If you don't have an Openreach (BT exchange) telephone line already you'll need to pay to have one installed, this costs an additional £60 one off charge. In areas where SSE install their own equipment in telephone exchanges (LLU), you may be liable for a £36.91 one-off line conversion charge depending on the provider you're switching from.

Under the default package you pay only for landline phone calls that you make, but if you use your phone a lot you can add one of three calls packages◊. These are for Evening & Weekend Calls, Anytime Calls (calls to all UK landline and mobile numbers apart from 09 numbers), and Anytime Plus, which adds calls to 35 countries.

The deals offer unlimited usage rather than being 'truly unlimited'. This means that you can download and upload as much as you like. Although SSE have a traffic management policy in place to slow down connections making excessive use of the services, this is unlikely to affect most people. The policy primarily targets peer-to-peer file sharing traffic, and prioritises essential traffic like video calls, gaming and general browsing.

The speed available to you will vary based on various factors including the time of day (speeds are likely to be slower at peak times like evenings when lots of people are online), the wiring in your home, and the distance from your nearest telephone exchange or cabinet, with speeds decreasing the further away you are. You can find out how close you are to your nearest exchange by using our postcode checker.

Which package should I choose?

If you're interested in a budget provider like SSE, it's likely that cost effectiveness and value for money are important factors to you.

The SSE packages are largely no-frills offerings without much in the way of extras to entice you. This means that your main choice will be based on what speed of broadband you need.

Of the three packages that SSE offer, Unlimited Broadband is the slowest and most affordable. With an average speed of 11Mb it's good enough for casual use, preferably in smaller households. If your usage doesn't extend much beyond shopping, browsing and Facebooking then it should be plenty. It should also be able to handle streaming of services like Netflix or NOW TV on one device, but if you need more it may struggle.

That said, do remember that the quoted 11Mb speed is only an average, so there's no guarantee that's what you'll get. Make sure you get a speed estimate before you sign up (and if it's less than, say, 6Mb then streaming might be off the table).

If you have a larger or more demanding household, or if you'd just prefer a faster service, then you should go for one of the fibre options. The middle Ultimate Fibre deal should be fast enough to allow several people to stream TV, play online games, or download large files at the same time. The faster Plus plan is the best choice for the most demanding households who live their lives online.

Again, you should get a speed estimate before you make your choice. If you're looking at the top-end Ultimate Fibre Plus plan but your estimate shows you won't get speeds much better than you could get on the middle deal, it might not be worth paying the extra money.

In all cases, keep an eye on any upfront fees that might be added if you don't have a BT line or are in an area where SSE have installed their own equipment in the nearest telephone exchange.

For each plan there's the choice to add a calls package. Your decision here depends simply on whether you make many landline calls, and when you make them. If you prefer to use your mobile then you might be better off sticking with the default option of just paying for calls as and when you make them.

Points to consider before you choose

  • Is low price the most important factor for you?
  • Is having the best, reliable high-performance wireless router important to you?
  • How often do you use your landline to make calls and at what times of day?
  • Are you a heavy user of streaming video or a heavy downloader?
  • Would you prefer a provider that can offer extras like a premium TV service as part of the same bundle?
  • Do you need the higher speeds offered by a fibre connection and is your exchange and street cabinet set up to support this?

Compare all SSE deals

What do I get when I sign-up?

It's always good to know upfront what you'll get when signing up with an ISP so you know what you can enjoy for free, or to budget for any extras you may want.

  • Reliable wireless router - SSE Broadband customers receive a free, easy to set up, wireless router when they sign up to help manage their connection. The Technicolor DWA0120 high-performance router, with its strong signal, security and transfer speeds, uses both 2.4GHz and 5GHz frequency with band steering technology for optimal performance. You can even share media content with your connected devices via a USB drive.
  • SSE Rewards - Sign up to SSE broadband and you'll get access to their Rewards scheme. This gives you benefits for events at The SSE Arena, Wembley and The SSE Hydro in Glasgow, including access to tickets before they go on general sale, upgrades to SSE lounges, and competitions and prize draws.

What are the benefits of SSE?

The benefits offered by an ISP may be what seals the deal in your decision to buy a package from them.

  • Wide coverage - SSE broadband is available anywhere there's a BT telephone exchange. You don't need to be an SSE energy customer to sign up.
  • Fixed price promise - One of SSE’s best selling points is their fixed price guarantee. Only changes to VAT or another relevant tax or levy can increase the monthly cost within that period.
  • 60-day Happiness Guarantee - If you aren't happy with any part of your deal, and SSE have been unable to fix the problem, you can leave without penalty in your first 60 days.
  • Free connection - There are no connection charges or delivery fees for most customers. The exceptions are if you need to have a BT line installed, or if you're in one of SSE's LLU areas where you may be liable to pay a one-off conversion charge should you be switching from a non-LLU provider.

What are the drawbacks of SSE?

Let's face it, not everything can be perfect, and even the best deals may have a downside.

  • Few extras - SSE offer a free router and a Rewards scheme with their broadband packages, but lack the extra incentives many other providers offer. However, this more 'no frills' approach means they are able to concentrate more on the provision of your broadband and phone services.
  • No short contracts - All of SSE's packages are on 18 month contracts.
  • Limited information - There's very little detailed information on the SSE website about telephone support opening hours. We would usually recommend that customers research these before signing up to a provider, though SSE should provide you with information about what speeds your line can support during the sign-up process.

◊ Inclusive Talk calls are for (i) local and national numbers beginning 01, 02 and 03 and (ii) 0845 & 0870 numbers. Excludes indirect access numbers and dial-up internet access. Inclusive calls are free up to 70 minutes. Any call duration over 70 minutes will be charged. Redial before 70 minutes to avoid charges. Fair use policy applies - maximum 1,000 minutes or 150 calls a month; whichever you reach first. If either of these limits is exceeded SSE will charge for these calls at the equivalent rate for non-inclusive periods. Daytime calls mean from 7am to 7pm Monday to Friday; Evening calls before 7am and after 7pm Monday to Friday; Weekend calls midnight Friday to midnight Sunday. For more information about call charges, see the Call Charges and Tariff Information PDF available from SSE product pages.

Broadband.co.uk