Why the predicted download and upload speeds we give you are estimated

We’ll always give you the fastest broadband speed that we can on your line. The range we give you is based on the typical speed range for 80% of our customers but you may find your actual speeds will vary slightly from this.

Our Basic Broadband and Superfast Broadband services are provided over your telephone line. Your telephone line is made from copper and can affect the speed you receive. That’s why we say our speeds for these products are ‘up to’.

There are several factors that can affect your speeds but aren’t a fault with the service. Here’s some of the main issues:

  1. The distance from telephone exchange: Phone lines can be several miles long, from the exchange to an address and shorter phone lines can support higher speeds. So, the shorter the phone line, the faster the speed. Unfortunately, this isn’t something that you can change as it’s the underlying (Openreach) infrastructure.
  2. Quality of your phone line: Phone lines are made of copper. Damaged, corroded copper, or poor connections (joints) between cables means slower broadband speeds. Sometimes, bad weather (such as heavy rain or high winds) and overhanging trees that touch an overhead cable can exacerbate the problem too.
  3. Using wireless devices: Although we’ve become reliant on the Wi-Fi from our router, the true test of speed should be measured with a cable plugged into your router from the master socket. With many household devices using wireless signals, you may experience electrical interference which affects performance as well.
  4. Demand at peak times: Although we have large capacity on our network, there may be times when there is a high percentage of customers trying to use it at the same time. Like a motorway, this can cause congestion and means that some customers may experience slower speeds during this time. This is also referred to as ‘contention’.
  5. If we’ve only had your postcode to estimate speeds: As postcode areas can vary, there may be times where the ‘best guess’ of your speeds using only your postcode can be affected as we’ll use the centre point for that postcode. If we can use your telephone number we estimate using information about the routing of your cable too to provide a greater level of accuracy.
  6. Information about your line has been updated: There may be newer information about your line that is available at a later date. For example, if works are carried out in your area that may improve/make poorer the quality of your phone line.