Living in a VM cabled area, we’ve always used (and been very happy) with VM TV and Broadband. We’re now paying £72 a month for TV and Broadband, have 100Mb ‘Fibre’ and mostly watch free to air channels / catchup on the TV. Home phone is not needed.
I did think about ditching VM and getting a Freeview box and a broadband only contract, but there doesn’t seem to be an amazing amount of choice here on the Freeview box (Humax / Manhattan).
After spending a bit of time of the phone this morning, final price offer was £49 from VM including a new 360 box to replace the V6. Not brilliant so I thought I’d see what others thoughts are on alternatives or getting a good deal out of VM ?
I don’t want to really go down the cancel route yet without an alternative plan…
I think to get the best price with Virgin you need to actually press the cancel contract button.
When I moved to a non-Virgin area, it stopped about two streets away from my new address I went with BT for broadband and ditched the TV component going with Freesat, which I am mostly happy with. Though to be honest since getting my 222 and upgrading my LP12 I hardly watch TV now but when I do it is fine.
We ditched VM after 20 years…….poor service. Dropped line speed to go with BT, i do not watch TV other than the news at 6.
I ditched my Virgin Media cable package back in August, and last week had a small satellite dish installed. Very happy with Freesat. Never really watched any of the extra channels that VM offered, and when they decided to put the price up, I quit. Retained their internet service for £18 a month.
James, you may not need a Freeview box at all, if you have a smart TV. When we ditched Virgin, we thought we’d need a box, but found out that we could simply attach a 1TB SSD drive to the back. The TV can record happily, just like if we had a box, and it only cost £100.
We now have Plusnet. It only provides 27 whatevers of download speed, but that’s fine for BBC iPlayer etc. Unlike Virgin, which stopped working when the weather got too hot, it’s been rock solid. It comes with a Hub 2 router, which we have in modem mode, and connect our Nest wifi Pro to it. All very simple, but cheap and effective. And you don’t have the pathetic process of threatening to leave to reduce the price like you do with Virgin. We were glad to see the back of them.
We are with Zen for fibre internet and have an Apple TV box. (A lot) More expensive than a freeview box but over time our smart tv (about 8 years old) has not supported new providers - eg, Disney, Apple… so I consider it worthwhile
Have never lived in a virgin area but the tales of woe with rising costs mean I wouldn’t have had it anyway
We’ve been with Zen for years. Not the cheapest ISP, but we’ve had excellent customer service from them and we’re on a no-price-increase contract. Ideally, we’d like to switch to FTTP but we only have Virgin in our road at present and the stories of poor service from them have put me off from switching. Audio and video streaming seem pretty trouble free with what we’ve got, so happy to stick with Zen at the mo.
Thanks all - some useful info there. I’ve no issue with VM - service has been excellent. We do have a Smart TV upstairs, but the lounge TV is still our trusty Pioneer Plasma and I’d prefer to keep the TV ‘dumb’ and use an external box. I’ll be keeping an eye on the release of the new Manhattan T4R Freeview recorder. This, with Plusnet fibre could do us nicely. Interestingly I see there is ‘Fibre’ and ‘Full Fibre’, with only ‘Full Fibre’ being fibre connectivity right to the house (and able to run at much higher speeds) with ‘Fibre’ still copper to the house and fibre to the cabinet.
On the issue of smart TVs, I have a Sony KD 65A8 - 3 years old. Post VM cancellation, I thought I’d be able to watch the Rugby World Cup live on the ITVX app on the telly - but there was no ‘live’ option.
I contacted ITVX who were very helpful but they came back with the following disappointing news…
“Sony TVs are not able to play ITVX Live as they do not have the software needed I’m afraid. The live TV feature is currently available only on Amazon Fire TV, Android TV, Apple TV, Freesat, LG Smart TVs, Now/Roku streaming players, Samsung Smart TVs (2017 and above), Sky Q, Sky Glass and Sky Stream puck, Virgin Media, Xbox One/S/X and Xbox Series X/S.”
Ditto no live TV on the C4 app on my telly. All well with Freesat.
Another long time Zen user here too.
They’ve been generally great but when I had a technical issue recently they couldn’t help me with a specific query they previously resolved 5-6 years ago (a custom configuration profile for their old supplied router to allow it to work in bridged mode with a Ubiquiti router). Figured it out myself in the end but tech support seemed a bir basic compared to what it used to be. Hopefully a one-off glitch.
Interesting point about Freeview boxes as I use an AppleTV (one of many) via a projector and the ‘catch up’ apps do not have the best quality so I was considering getting a basic Freeview box to watch live TV, and there seem to be very few around unless you go for no name brands.
I have no interest in recording Freeview, I just want a better quality feed from a decent aerial than streaming gives me.
Manhattan seem to have a new box coming out but release date has slipped many times - I suspect there isn’t huge demand for these things anymore.
Would you consider having a satellite dish installed? You could then have a Freesat box and that has all the BBC/ITV1234/C4/C5 channels in HD unlike Freeview as well as a few others. You should be able to have a dish installed for about £150, maybe a bit less. A non-recordable 4k Freesat box will set you back £145
We recently cancelled Sky after 30 years as customers, price is silly now for the amount we were watching and so far impressed with the Freesat box we got to replace the Sky box.
I had considered this but due to a tree line, we’re reasonably obscured line of sight to the GEO belt so i would need to be a bit creative with dish position (and do a bit of preliminary checking with a clinometer first). I’m going to tackle VM again to see if i can get a better price.