TalkTalk vs Plusnet broadband: Which should I get?

TalkTalk Vs Plusnet logo

Looking for good value, straightforward broadband? TalkTalk and Plusnet are both good choices. Though they don’t have as many bells and whistles attached to their services as some providers, you’ll still get a lot for your money.

But with two providers this similar, which should you go for? Well, they may have a lot in common, but they're a little different once we look closer. Let's see what you can get.

Check out our full TalkTalk review and Plusnet review while you're at it, too.

Speed and cost

The primary broadband packages from TalkTalk (www.talktalk.co.uk) and Plusnet (www.plus.net) are broadly similar. Both offer:

  • Standard ADSL broadband, with average download speeds around the 10 / 11Mb range and unlimited downloads
  • Fibre optic broadband, with average download speeds around 35 / 36Mb and unlimited downloads
  • Fibre optic broadband, with average speeds of 63 - 66Mb range and unlimited downloads

In terms of cost, comparable packages have very similar prices. Plus, since both providers often have deals and offers going on, the cheapest one can change at any point.

One difference that does set the two providers apart is contract length: most packages from TalkTalk last 18 months, while Plusnet offers shorter terms.

Verdict

Winner icon

Ultimately, there's very little difference. It's best to look at everything else each provider offers too.

Current TalkTalk deals

Security

Good news for us, bad news for hackers: TalkTalk and Plusnet both include internet security with their broadband.

All TalkTalk packages come with HomeSafe, which gives some network-level security; and you can add the SuperSafe Boost for extra protection from malware and the likes. It's £2 per month and covers up to eight devices, including PCs, tablets, smartphones - the lot.

You'll get Plusnet SafeGuard with all of Plusnet's broadband packages, and you can install Plusnet Protect on your PC for extra protection. It's free with Unlimited and Unlimited Fibre Extra, but costs an extra fee with Unlimited Fibre. Again, you can install it on up to eight gadgets.

Verdict

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Both providers offer the same level of security... but you're more likely to get it for free from Plusnet.

Home phone

To get TalkTalk broadband, you'll also need TalkTalk line rental, which is included. One of the great things about a TalkTalk landline is that it's extremely flexible. To get things like more inclusive minutes you can add a 30-day 'Boost' - such as the Unlimited UK Calls Boost - and you can download the Talk2Go smartphone app to use those minutes when you're out and about. Read more about TalkTalk home phone.

Plusnet broadband, meanwhile, has something special up its sleeve: you can team it with line rental from any provider. It means you have a great way to save money if you find a good home phone deal elsewhere.

Of course, if you stick with Plusnet's landline, you'll get a little discount on your bill. And it's not a bad service at all, with plenty of calling options and features to pick from. Read more about Plusnet home phone.

Verdict

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If you use your landline a lot, Plusnet gives you more options - especially as you can get line rental from any provider you please.

Current Plusnet deals

Best buy deals
  • Unlimited Fibre
    £60 Cashback
    • Online Exclusive
    • Average speed* 36Mbps
    • Pay as you go phone
    • Offer ends
    • £23.50 per month
    18 month contract
  • Unlimited Broadband
    £50 Cashback
    • Online Exclusive
    • Average speed* 10Mbps
    • Pay as you go phone
    • Offer ends
    • £18.99 per month
    18 month contract
  • Unlimited Fibre & Unlimited UK & Mobile Calls
    £60 Cashback
    • Online Exclusive
    • Average speed* 36Mbps
    • Anytime calls inc.
    • Offer ends
    • £31.50 per month
    18 month contract
  • Unlimited Fibre Extra
    £70 cashback
    • Online Exclusive
    • Average speed* 66Mbps
    • Pay as you go phone
    • Offer ends
    • £28.99 per month
    18 month contract
  • Unlimited Broadband & Unlimited UK & Mobile Calls
    £50 Cashback
    • Online Exclusive
    • Average speed* 10Mbps
    • Anytime calls inc.
    • Offer ends
    • £26.99 per month
    18 month contract

*Average speeds are based on the download speeds of at least 50% of customers at peak time (8pm to 10pm). Speed can be affected by a range of technical and environmental factors. The speed you receive where you live may be lower than that listed above. You can check the estimated speed to your property prior to purchasing.

TV

TalkTalk has a decent - and very flexible - TV service going on, which you can order along with your broadband. You'll have the option of a YouView or a YouView+ box, and then you can add some of those Boost things to get extra channels - like the Entertainment Boost, Kids Boost, Sky Cinema, and loads more. Each one works on a 30-day basis so you can stop and start them whenever you want.

Watching TV

With Plusnet, you can add a YouView box to your package, and for a little extra each month you'll get Freeview, BT Sport Lite, and 20 premium channels.

Of course, broadband with either provider doesn't stop you from getting TV from Virgin Media or Sky if they're available for your home.

Verdict

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TalkTalk has quite a bit more going for it if you want to add on some basic TV.

What else?

How about sports? If you have Plusnet broadband and YouView or Sky TV - or even just a spare Sky box and satellite dish hanging around - you can add BT Sport to your telly. Sky Sports, meanwhile, is available on TalkTalk TV. Read our guide to sports on TV for more.

Plusnet's customer service is worth a mention, too. The provider has won awards for it - so if you have an issue with your broadband, rest assured that Plusnet will get it sorted.

And let's not forget mobile. As a 'quad-play' provider, Plusnet also offer mobile deals, imaginatively named Plusnet Mobile. As a broadband customer, you can get extra discounts on its SIM-only deals. TalkTalk Mobile, on the other hand, is sadly no more.

Conclusion

While TalkTalk and Plusnet are both quite similar at their core, slight variations between the two mean that each offer something a little different.

If it's just basic, straightforward broadband you're after, Plusnet's services are the most simple to get your head around. Teamed with its award-winning customer service it's probably the most hassle-free option.

However, if you need something more from your broadband - like a flexible phone or TV package, or an app to use your landline minutes from your mobile, or decent internet security - there are more options available for you from TalkTalk.

Both Plusnet and TalkTalk offer business broadband packages.

Enter your postcode to compare broadband packages and see what you can get.

See also:

  • How to choose a broadband provider and package

  • How do I make my router more secure?

  • How to set up public Wi-Fi for your business

  • No monthly contract broadband

  • How to choose a student broadband deal

  • Broadband in Hull

  • Which broadband provider has the best security?

  • Mobile broadband vs fixed line broadband: Which is best for me?

  • Plusnet vs BT broadband - which is best?

  • BT vs TalkTalk broadband

  • BT vs Virgin Media broadband: Which is best?

  • John Lewis Broadband and home phone review