9 Best Broadband Alternatives In The UK You Should Check Out

Broadband alternatives have become increasingly popular as people strive to stay connected and enjoy a faster internet connection. As traditional broadband providers are becoming slower and more expensive, many people are looking for alternative solutions to offer them a better service. 

Several broadband alternatives are available, whether you’re looking for a faster, more reliable, or better value for money. From wireless broadband to satellite broadband, there are various options, all offering varying benefits. 

In this article, you’ll explore the different types of broadband alternatives, helping you to find the best one for your needs.

FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions) On Broadband Alternatives

1. What can you use instead of broadband?

Currently, satellite broadband is the primary substitute for fibre connections. With speeds up to 75 Mbps, it’s easy to understand why people consider this option for residential and commercial applications.

2. Can you get broadband without wires?

If you do not have cables or phone lines in your residence, you can still have internet access through fixed-wireless, mobile wireless (4G LTE), or satellite connections. If you have phone lines installed in your home, you can receive DSL internet, even if you want to avoid signing up for landline phone service.

3. How can I get internet without fibre?

Satellite internet is the main alternative to fibre broadband. There are various methods to access the internet. Although mobile data is usually limited and dial-ups and hotspots can be problematic, most prefer fibre and DSL connections.

What You’ll Need:

Here are the things that you’ll need for broadband alternatives: 

  • 1 piece internet cable
  • Phone filters
  • 1 piece ADSL splitter
  • 1 piece telephone cable
  • An internet modem or router with a power adapter

Top Broadband Alternatives

Here are the alternatives to best broadband alternatives: 

1. Mobile Broadband Dongles


Instead of connecting your mobile phone to your computer, you can plug a specific gadget called a dongle into one of the USB ports.

Mobile broadband dongles are one of the best broadband alternatives. These gadgets have space for a SIM card and a 4G or 5G antenna. Similarly, they link to a cellular internet network to access the web.

Once a dongle is inserted into your computer, it will ask you to install the necessary software drivers. This may also cause a web page to open in your web browser, prompting you to log in. After that, you can access the internet whenever you need to, simply by connecting the dongle.

Although dongles are user-friendly, they can only be used with computers to connect to the web. Unfortunately, they cannot be used with devices such as iPads or Xbox consoles since they do not have USB ports.

You can purchase a dongle with a data plan that suits your requirements.

If your daily internet usage is limited to web browsing and emailing for less than half an hour, you may only require 10-20 GB of monthly data.

For instance, if you frequently use the internet and engage in activities that require a lot of data, such as streaming videos. You might need 50GB or even more monthly data in that case.

2. 4G/5G Routers


These gadgets are analogous to broadband routers. However, they employ 4G or 5G to link to the web instead of your fixed line.

You can insert a SIM card into the wall to set up your 4G router. This will create a Wi-Fi network that any device can be connected to. You can also use an Ethernet cable to link your devices to the router.

If you are searching for a permanent substitute for fixed-line internet service, then routers of this type are usually the best choice. If you receive a strong 4G or 5G signal in your house, you can anticipate incredible speeds and connect multiple gadgets to the web without any problem.

The disadvantage of having 4G or 5G routers is that they are pricey compared to dongles and MiFi gadgets.

Nonetheless, it is possible to reduce expenses by committing to a long-term agreement for a 4G router – often, the equipment is given without cost.

Many companies (for instance, Three, which offers the ZTE MF286D router for home broadband) provide a 2-week time frame to try the product and ensure a good internet connection.

3. Tethering, Using Your Phone


If you need to browse the web for basic activities, like checking emails, you can take advantage of the internet connection that comes with your mobile phone.

To perform this, you can either: 

  • Set up a wireless connection from your telephone and access it via your computer. This is very similar to forming a tiny Wi-Fi system that any of your gadgets can access to get on the web.
  • Connect your mobile device to your computer by using the charging cord. Insert the cord into the USB port of your PC. Afterward, you should see a notification on your phone to initiate the tethering of your online connection.

Generally, the first approach is preferable as it provides quicker speeds and simultaneously charges your device. Nonetheless, the second method is better if you use a device with no USB port.

Once you have established a link between your smartphone and computer, you can exploit the 4G signal of your cell phone to surf the web on another device. This can be useful when dealing with a slow Wi-Fi connection.

If you decide to use mobile broadband instead of a landline connection, the downside is that it can consume your data allowance quickly. Once you reach your monthly limit, you could be liable for additional fees.

Due to this, I would suggest this approach is only suitable for minimal online activity or use it occasionally. You can increase your mobile package to ensure an adequate monthly data allowance.

4. Mobile Wi-Fi (MiFi) Devices


Like dongles, Mobile Wi-Fi (MiFi) devices require a SIM card to operate on either 4G or 5G networks to gain internet access.

Instead of connecting to your computer via its USB port, MiFi devices generate their Wi-Fi network. This means you can simultaneously access the web with numerous gadgets, not just PCs.

MiFi devices come with a battery that allows them to be taken on the go, such as while in a caravan. However, they must be recharged after a certain time, usually around 6 hours.

It is essential to remember that the Wi-Fi signal emitted by mobile devices is less powerful than that sent out by regular Wi-Fi routers.

The signal may not be able to extend to the opposite end of your residence, and MiFi can only accommodate up to 10 linked devices simultaneously. Nevertheless, MiFi units are usually quite economical – priced similarly to a dongle.

5. Satellite Broadband


Satellite internet is a long-term option instead of standard internet connections. Satellite broadband is one of the best broadband alternatives.

When you utilise satellite internet, your hub will link to a space object in the sky above the planet. Information will be sent to and from the satellite as you transfer or get data.

People who are living in remote locations where 4G reception is not great can consider satellite broadband a viable alternative to attain download speeds of roughly 20-30 Mbps.

Satellite broadband is regularly associated with an extended latency, meaning it takes a while for satellite data to be dispatched or received. Consequently, it’s not suitable for playing games online.

When compared to regular broadband, satellite broadband tends to be quite costly.

6. Leased Line


A cable is installed and connected to your building, similar to a phone line installation. This cable offers a single access point to the internet, devoted only to you, which can deliver any speed you need.

Although it is the most expensive option, the service-level agreement comes with a much better basic broadband service provided through the telephone line. Moreover, it offers much more reliable performance.

The cost of setting up a leased line can be fairly high depending on your location concerning the closest connection point.

Fast broadband services have become available to small and medium-sized businesses. They no longer have to pay for their costly leased lines. Thus, they can bargain for a better deal if they have a genuine requirement for one.

Maximum speeds can reach a maximum of 10,000 Mbps, but most companies purchase speeds between 100 – 500 Mbps.

7. Virgin Fibre-Optic


In the United Kingdom, most high-speed broadband services are supplied through the BT network, overseen by BT’s subsidiary OpenReach.

When you search for a broadband plan, many companies (e.g., TalkTalk, PlusNet, Sky, etc.) are taking advantage of BT’s infrastructure – the same set of wires that carries your internet.

Compared to its competitors, Virgin has its infrastructure and is fibre-optic. This gives them the advantage of providing considerably faster connections than their opponents, whose network is based on the long-established BT network and still relies on copper wire for individual building connections.

Although the service-level contract may not be equivalent to that of a leased line, the speed and quality of performance will typically be similar.

Many small and medium-sized businesses will benefit from a fibre-optic Virgin connection, offering an average speed of 300 Mbps or higher.

8. VDSL (Superfast) Broadband


The current equivalent of the initial ADSL broadband connection is usually called ‘superfast’ or ‘fibre’ broadband and is delivered to your residence through the traditional telephone line.

BT holds the primary infrastructure, but ‘unbundled’ exchanges will enable customers to purchase the internet service from a wide selection of providers.

Major cell phone suppliers have started to provide residential and commercial internet access, as well as major home entertainment companies, including Sky and TalkTalk.

When it comes to the requirements of small businesses and households, the average speed of 40 to 80 Mbps is usually more than enough when multiple individuals are using the same connection.

9. ADSL And Bonded ADSL


This broadband is the classic original type, sent out through a telephone line in places where fibre networks are not yet accessible. It’s also an economical choice if you are in a location where fibre is available.

The download rate is entirely satisfactory, ranging from 6 -20 Mbps. However, the upload speed could be better, not exceeding 1.5 Mbps. Consequently, it takes an extended period to dispatch large emails or upload multimedia files.

If you are limited to ADSL, you can join a few lines and take advantage of the cumulative speeds as if they were just one connection.

So, here are the nine broadband alternatives.

Similar Tutorials Types to Check Out

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  • 5 Best Dongle Deals You Don’t Wanna Miss Out: Are you looking for the best dongle deals? Dongles are a great way to stay connected to the internet, and with the right deal, you can receive the most out of your purchase. In this article, you’ll explore the best dongle deals

Conclusion: Broadband Alternatives


You can use several broadband alternatives in the UK, resulting in vastly different performance levels and speeds.

Although satellite broadband is more expensive, it usually offers much better speeds than fixed-line options like cable and DSL.

The most obvious benefit of using satellite broadband is that it doesn’t need to be connected to a telephone line. This means no modem is required, and you can be connected directly to the internet.

I hope this article on the best broadband alternatives sounds helpful!

Mark Dalio

Mark Dalio

Mark is a tech-obsessed serial entrepreneur who also enjoys reading and writing. He has a strong urge to keep learning and talking about technology, which led him to become an author. Mark has co-founded two successful startups, one of which was acquired in 2018.

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