Written by
Sarah Johnson, Money Saving Evangelist
, 5 October 2017

Before you get excited about installing broadband in your home, you need to know which types are available to you and, more importantly, how much they will cost. 

What types of broadband are there?

The most frequently installed types of broadband available in the UK right now are ADSL and cable (otherwise known as fibre-optic). ADSL is considered to be available everywhere, but cable is still not accessible to everyone, despite the demand for it and the generally increased speeds it can offer customers.

Checking the broadband availability in your area.

Using our simple postcode checker, you can find out which types of broadband are available to you and from which suppliers. From there, you can compare package prices, which will usually include phone connectivity, and make an informed decision as to the best supplier to you. It can also be worthwhile speaking to neighbours, to see who their suppliers are and if they would recommend the service.

What’s the difference between ADSL and fibre optic broadband?

ADSL – Offered by the majority of broadband providers, ADSL is still the most popular form of connection as it runs on BT phone lines, which are present in every home. This means that ADSL broadband is freely available to approximately 99% of homes in the UK.

Broadband data runs through the copper telephone wires that connect to your home and allow you to use both the internet and your phone, at the same time, thanks to significant frequency differences.

If you want to combine your phone, broadband and television packages, ADSL is not the right solution for you, as television connectivity will need to be arranged separately, though certain providers will combine all three interests into one handy bundle, for one monthly payment.

Standard ADSL connections can offer broadband speeds of up to 8Mbps, but ADSL2+ uses different software which can give you access to speeds up to 24Mbps.

Virgin Media Vivid 200 Fibre broadband **Cheaper in your area**

Contract length
12 months
Download limit
Download speed
Up to 200 Mb
Upfront cost
Monthly cost
£35 for 12 months; then £45.25

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Fibre-– Cable broadband is able to carry far more data than ADSL connections and optic have the added benefit of being able to include television, phone and broadband, all on one cable.

The most common type of fibre optic connection is called FTTC, which stands for fibre to the cabinet, which literally means that your broadband cable will connect directly to a telephone exchange cabinet on the street, at which point it connects to your standard copper phone wire and runs into your home. This popular choice of connection boasts impressive speeds of up to 76Mbps.

For the lucky few, FTTH broadband connectivity, or fibre to the home, is available. This is currently being rolled out into more areas in the UK, as demand has increased significantly, thanks to the potential for speeds of up to 200Mbps. The unbroken connection of a broadband cable running directly into the home and not being stopped at a telephone cabinet significantly improves the quality of service.

Use our postcode checker now to see which types of broadband are available to you and choosing your supplier will be a walk in the park.

Written by
Sarah Money Saving Evangelist
, 5 October 2017