O2 home broadband price increase, and what to do about it

Bitterwallet - O2 FAILEarlier in the week, avid Bitterwallet readers highlighted O2's intention to increase the cost of home broadband - in some cases by over a fifth, from £7.50 per month to £9.50 per month. In fairness, plenty of readers commented that O2 offered a very decent service, while others were intent on dropping the provider like a white hot brick.

One of the two readers that initially contacted us, Craig, has been in touch about his dealings with O2 since learning of the price rise:

I've been with O2 broadband for about 18 months. I rang today and spoke to customer services. I told them that as my usage hasn't changed over the last few years (I've always been a heavy internet user), I was unwilling to see my price increased when the real cost of providing internet services to me was lower than ever. When I said I wanted to cancel, they naturally put me though to a nice lady in retentions.

She told me that if I sign up for standard for 12 months they'll keep my £5 discount (my wife has an O2 mobile - apparently this qualifies me for a discount) and add another £2 discount, bringing the total back down to £7.50, for the whole of the 12 months.

She went on to say that if I move my line rental to them (at £7.50 per month) from BT, they'll thrown in free "The Works" broadband with it.

So, long story short, I'm still paying £7.50 per month, but now I can choose to stay as I am, or move my line rental to them and get rental plus top-of-the-line broadband package for the same price.

Good news for Craig, and a couple of points to take forward from his experience, if you'd rather fight the price increase•:

• Craig qualified for discount by virtue of his wife having a mobile contract with O2, even though the home broadband account is in Craig's name only. If there's anybody in your household who's also a customer of O2, even if it is a different product, make the point to customer services.

• It's a point well known by savvy consumers, but it's always worth making the point again; the retentions department has a lot of power in a highly competitive market like consumer telecoms - remember, it’s cheaper for a network to keep existing customers than attract new ones

Meanwhile, according to avid reader Darren on the Twitters, O2 have apologised for the lack of information in the previous emails and are now posting a letter instead.


  • thepearce
    This should come with a huge warning about the new packages - such as "The works" being traffic managed / throttled. Many would never move to that - even if paid to do so. Also - it's fairly easy to get 12 months free broadband from retentions or a heavy discount on the legacy packages.
  • Mark
    On the contrary, I have everything with them, broadband, the unlimited calls package, and line rental. I, like Craig said, well maybe the cost of internet use is changing, but then why is the cost of your line rental going up too? I even said I was sorry to think about leaving them as I have been so happy with the service over the last year.... But they just happily gave me my MAC code and said they will be sending out a Pre-Paid postage bag for me to return my router in! So farewell O2, sadly. And in all honesty, I would have stayed if they could better the deal. But may the cheaper win... And thats Sky right now.
  • C S.
    already leaving o2 mobile when contract expires, looks like will leave there bb now. o2 are getting worse and worse.
  • Bazinga
    They sent me an e-mail telling me about the price increase even though they booted me off 6 months ago.
  • a d.
    You must be careful if you are on an older legacy package! if they change it to the newer packages there is traffic management and a download limit!!! They especially change you if you try to add o2 homephone!!!
  • amin
    Sign a new contract and you will be on their new agreement. Means download speed dropping from 1500kb to 17kb (yes, I know what I'm talking about), and also 100GB per month traffic limit! I am leaving them tomorrow within my 30days happiness guaranty.
  • defcon
    I'd rather pay a few quid extra a month then be traffic managed to death. I've looked around at other providers and what they're offering but nothing else comes close to o2's (old) packages.
  • Nob
    I complained - for signing up to another 12 month contract (my current one didn't expire until Oct 2011) I got six months free, then six months at £9.50. Don't want home phone with them. I asked about overiders, and they said that they charge per minute for any calls using 18185.
  • More B.
    [...] O2 are giving their home broadband packages a shake in terms of their pricing (with several readers complaining about new packages suffering from [...]
  • Si
    am I not right that £9.50 a month for unlimited BB is still a pretty decent deal?
  • Brandon H.
    I moved my home phone to them and got my broadband renewed at the same time. Since then my laptop usage has gone right down because just browsing has come to a slow, let alone downloads.
  • bernie
    For anyone interested this is an email I have just sent to o2 BB after my line rental has been increased: This is not a question, this is a FORMAL COMPLAINT to the Home Broadband Department. I have been an o2 silver customer for over 6 years and because of decent service I decided to switch from Be to o2 for Home Broadband. What a mistake! A comedy of errors and complete lack of professionalism and expertise that make me think you should stick to what you do best - mobile. 1) I have been pulling my hair out at the hours I have been put on hold and asked to try out various cowboy solutions to my problem by people who know less about the technical side of broadband than me 2) I have been promised various call backs and when I have received them I have been told that I do not have the right name so they cannot speak to me! 3) I am still awaiting a call back from weeks ago. My case has clearly been forgotten about or marked as 'resolved' on your inefficient computer system 4) NO ONE knows what is wrong with my connection so I demanded new equipment to be sent and this never happened. Every pumpkin I speak to on the phone (do you even train these dudes on anything technical at all?) goes through the SAME process with me (that has clearly not worked several times) before I can be put through to some First Line people or something who STILL do not have a clue what is wrong with my broadband 5) We NEVER had this problem with our last provider so it is clearly a problem with o2 6) I have had an unreliable connection for 5 MONTHS now and I deserve an immediate refund for ALL of the time my service has not been reliable. 7) Anything less than the above and you are charging good money for nonexistent service 8) Time to pull your act together on the Home Broadband front or admit defeat and stick to what you know 9) Do not think you can waste one more second of my time asking the same questions you have asked a million times doing a wireless box reset going through all those questions
  • Suranjith
    Hi Everyone, Today I found that they have increased the monthly charge for the O2 broadband. Initially, agreed for £9.79 for month as I am a mobile customer. But this month bill is £13.00. When I contacted the customer service, the guy told me that they did notify this for all customers via email and letters. But I never got any email or letters and the guy was unable to confirm the date if they send me any email or letter. Can anybody please tell me what action I can take for this? Thank You
  • Adrian
    In response to Suranjith, I also got a new bill today at £9.50 but didnt receive any notification of the increase. I phoned O2 on 800 230 0202 and chose options 1 and 5 which is for customers thinking of leaving O2. I was told that I was out of contract and that they could do something to help. I said I also had my mobile phone contract with O2 and was offered a new 12 month contract with either the next 3 months free and £9.50 / month or a reduction of £2.50 per month taking my contract down to £7.00 per month which is what I opted for. I checked that there were no new limitations placed on my service and they said the only change was that I would only get 1 MacAfae license but as I'm on Mac I dont use that anyway. So all in all, I'm actually getting a better monthly rate now and pleased to stay with O2 as their service has been pretty good up to now. Just hope it stays that way...
  • Ian
    Found out today that the price of my package has gone up from £7.66 to £9.50. I also received NO prior warning of this, either by letter or email. As there does seem to be a fault somewhere (I'm currently only receiving about half a meg download speed at best), I'm looking at switching to an F.O. provider instead.

What do you think?

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