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EE Broadband

EE Broadband review: Expensive, without the performance to match

Our Rating :
Price when reviewed : £32
(starting from) Note: The monthly price shown will increase on 31 March 2024 by the Consumer Price Index rate of inflation plus 3.9%

Offers fast connections on paper, but our survey scores suggest real-world speed is lacking


  • Connection speeds go right up to 1.6Gbits/sec
  • Customer service scores are relatively strong


  • Rated poorly for speed and reliability in our survey
  • More expensive than many of its rivals

You might think of EE as the mobile arm of the BT family, but it offers fixed-line broadband connections as well. These are very much based on the Openreach network (also part of the BT family), so you won’t see it veering too far from the path trodden by the other BT providers: Plusnet and BT Broadband itself.

EE clearly sees itself as something of a premium brand, since it’s much more expensive than its BT stablemate Plusnet when you compare tariffs with the same connection speed. Whether it’s worth that extra money is highly debatable, as it performs worse than Plusnet (and several other providers) in our survey.

Speed and reliability are EE’s biggest weaknesses, according to the customers we surveyed (conducted in partnership with YouGov). Only the Sky-owned providers delivered worse customer satisfaction scores when it came to speed, which is surprising given the range of full-fibre tariffs that EE now offers, with some going all the way up to 1.6Gbits/sec in download speed. 

Let’s explore the full range of EE tariffs and see if we can find any reason to give this premium-priced provider your custom. 

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EE Broadband review: Fibre Essentials

Fibre Essentials are EE’s fibre-to-the-cabinet (FTTC) tariffs, where the final leg is run over those old copper wires and thus download speeds are capped at 67Mbits/sec.

As mentioned above, EE is part of the same BT family as Plusnet, so it’s head-scratchingly difficult to understand why there’s such as wide gap between the two providers’ prices. Plusnet’s fastest FTTC connection costs only £26/mth – EE will charge you a full £10/mth more (after any promotional offers that might give you a couple of months of free service). 

It’s no great surprise, then, to find EE lurking below Plusnet in the value for money table, with only just over half of EE customers satisfied with the value they’re receiving.

Customers on these tariffs will receive the Smart Hub Plus router, which is a Wi-Fi 6 model. 

READ NEXT: Plusnet broadband review

EE broadband review: Full Fibre Essentials and Busiest Home Bundle

EE has a wide span of tariffs for those in a full-fibre area. It’s worth noting that there are a few low-end full-fibre tariffs that are almost identical in speed and price to the Fibre Essentials tariffs, so we’ve not included those in our table below.

However, the really interesting bit of EE’s full-fibre lineup comes at the other end of the scale, where speeds now stretch all the way up to 1.6Gbits/sec with the Busiest Home Bundle. This comes in at a massive £70/mth, though, which for comparison is £30/mth more than Hyperoptic’s gigabit connection.

EE does at least do its best to ensure you get as much of that speed around your home as possible on the Busiest Home tariff, with the inclusion of the Smart Wi-Fi Plus package, which is a mesh router system that helps you get faster speeds in the more remote parts of your home, such as back bedrooms or home offices. However, it’s also worth noting that the Ethernet ports on the supplied Smart Hub Plus router are limited to 1Gbit/sec, meaning you can’t get the full speed of the connection even if you use a cable, which is disappointing. 

The number of added extras diminish as you move down the Full Fibre speed range, though some also include six months’ worth of Xbox Game Pass Ultimate, which might interest the gamers in your household. 

Fibre 36 EssentialsFibre 50 EssentialsFibre 67 EssentialsFull Fibre 150 EssentialsFull Fibre 300 EssentialsFull Fibre 500 Essentials
Price per month (inc line rental)£32£33£36£34£38£44
Upfront costNoneNoneNoneNoneNoneNone
Stated speed36Mbits/sec50Mbits/sec67Mbits/sec149Mbits/sec308Mbits/sec500Mbits/sec
Contract length24 months24 months24 months24 months24 months24 months

Full Fibre Gigabit EssentialsBusiest Home Bundle
Price per month (inc line rental)£50£70
Upfront costNoneNone
Stated speed900Mbits/sec1.6Gbits/sec
Contract length24 months24 months

Note: The monthly price shown will increase on 31 March 2024 by the Consumer Price Index rate of inflation plus 3.9%

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EE broadband review: Coverage

As part of the BT group, EE is almost duty bound to get its wholesale broadband connections from Openreach. That means that around 12.5m homes will be able to take advantage of EE’s Full Fibre tariffs and the much faster download speeds they offer. The vast majority of the remainder will be within reach of a FTTC connection, so can only pick from the Fibre Essentials tariffs.  

Other providers such as Zen Internet and Vodafone offer deals with wholesale providers in addition to Openreach, meaning they may be able to offer full fibre in areas where EE can’t – something to consider if you want the triple-digit speeds that EE says aren’t available to you.

READ NEXT: The best broadband deals

EE broadband review: Performance and customer satisfaction

Despite a broad swathe of full-fibre tariffs, satisfaction with the speeds on offer from EE is low. Only Sky and Now Broadband posted worse scores in our survey, with only two thirds of EE customers saying they were satisfied with their internet speeds. A sizeable 16% of customers were left unhappy: a score that is far worse than BT Broadband, and down on the other BT provider, Plusnet. 

Reliability scores aren’t much stronger, either. A middling 69% of EE customers declared themselves satisfied with the reliability of their connection, but 12% were unhappy. That left EE just below the average mark for the entire industry.

Things do look brighter for EE when it comes to customer service. Here EE finished a creditable fourth, albeit with only 56% of customers saying they were satisfied with the service on offer. But there were relatively few discontents – only Zen Internet had a smaller proportion of customers dissatisfied with customer service. 

EE’s Contact Centre seems to deal with problems with a decent degree of success, too. Just shy of 70% of EE customers were left satisfied after reaching out to the Contact Centre, though 16% remained unimpressed.  

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EE broadband review: Verdict

EE has some of the most expensive tariffs of any of the broadband providers on test here, but doesn’t deliver the performance or customer service scores to justify those high fees. Yes, the 1.6Gbits/sec top speed is faster than most, but for £70/mth, it should be. Unless you’re absolutely aching for those mega-fast speeds and can cut a better deal with EE, there are better options elsewhere.


Unless otherwise stated, all of the figures are drawn from a survey commissioned by Expert Reviews, with respondents and data supplied by YouGov PLC. The total sample size was 6,316 adults and the survey was carried out online. The figures have been weighted and are representative of all Great British adults (aged over 18).

We asked people how likely they would be to recommend their broadband provider to others and to rate its customer service, reliability, value, and speed. Only the 11 ISPs with over 50 respondents are included in our results above.

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Offers fast connections on paper, but our survey scores suggest real-world speed is lacking

£32 (starting from) Note: The monthly price shown will increase on 31 March 2024 by the Consumer Price Index rate of inflation plus 3.9%
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