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Community Fibre Broadband Review 2022: is Community Fibre any good?

Our Community Fibre Broadband rating: 4.5 / 5

Community Fibre employs its own dedicated full-fibre network to deliver fast yet affordable next-gen broadband, but it’s only available in London.

Community Fibre broadband review

Community Fibre offers powerful full-fibre broadband with speeds that outclass most other providers while remaining affordable. And it’s well regarded by customers. But you must live in London to get its services, its phone service may not suit everyone, and its Wi-Fi router comes with a couple of caveats.

We like...

  • Rapid full-fibre broadband.
  • Excellent upload speeds.
  • Good value deals.
  • Reassuring customer feedback.
  • Free router supports mesh Wi-Fi.
  • Gigabit deals include a Wi-Fi 6 router.

We don’t like...

  • It’s only available in London.
  • Wi-Fi routers only have two network ports.
  • Call plan may not suit everyone. 

Community Fibre broadband: in summary

  • Download speeds (average): 35Mb / 75Mb / 150Mb / 200Mb / 500Mb / 920Mb
  • Upload speeds (average): 35Mb / 75Mb / 150Mb / 200Mb / 500Mb / 920Mb
  • Data usage limit: Unlimited
  • Type of broadband: Fibre optic (FTTP)
  • Home phone line: Yes (optional)
  • Inclusive phone calls: Included
  • Wi-Fi router: Linksys Velop

Community Fibre broadband speeds

Community Fibre installs and operates its own Fibre To The Premises (FTTP) network. As such, it has a different selection of packages from many other providers, most of which share the BT Openreach lines.
When comparing Community Fibre deals on Broadband Genie, you’ll find the following choice of packages:

  • Community Fast Fibre: 35Mb download / upload speed
  • Community Fibre 75: 75Mb download / upload speed 
  • Community Fibre 150: 150Mb download / upload speed 
  • Community Fibre 200: 200Mb download / upload speed
  • Community Fibre 500: 500Mb download / upload speed
  • Community Fibre 1 Gig: 920Mb download / upload speed

Most homes will find the 35Mb, 75Mb, or 150Mb packages adequate. Larger homes where the broadband is shared among multiple users and devices may want to step up to the ultrafast Fibre 500 or 1 Gig.

Community Fibre speed summary

Community Fibre’s speeds put most other broadband providers to shame. Not only does it offer excellent download performance, but its upload speeds far outpace most of the competition, including some other FTTP services.

That’s because unlike the majority of providers, Community Fibre offers symmetrical broadband, where the download and upload speeds are the same. Most other broadband is asymmetrical, with download speeds prioritised at the expense of upload rates. 

This won’t matter for everyone, but for certain activities (working from home, online gaming, backing up files to a cloud storage drive) the additional upstream bandwidth is invaluable.

Community Fibre broadband value for money

Community Fibre has some competitively priced deals when you consider the speed it can deliver. 

At the entry level, prices start at around £25 for 35Mb fibre. Other providers do offer cheaper deals with similar (or even better) download rates, but all of those have much slower upload speeds. 

But the best value services are the higher-end packages. Community Fibre 200 provides a 200Mb average download and upload speed for just over £30 per month. That will be more than enough for many homes, but if you want to go even faster, there’s also 500Mb for around £40 or a staggering 920Mb for just over £50.

All Community Fibre packages are broadband only as standard, but a calls package is available as an added extra. This too is fairly priced, at £10 per month for unlimited anytime calling to UK landlines and mobiles.

However, the phone service does have a couple of potential drawbacks.

For one, it does not allow you to make international or premium rate calls. More importantly, you will need to have a fallback in case of an emergency because it uses the fibre line and the phone will not work if your power or internet goes down. This could also make it unsuitable for anyone who needs a landline for an alarm or emergency alert system.

However, you can get a regular BT landline installed alongside Community Fibre; the two networks are separate and will not interfere with each other.

Community Fibre customer service

At the time of writing, Community Fibre has an amazing 4.9 / 5 Trustpilot score. It is the highest-rated provider in the entire UK. 

Based on that, we think you can be pretty confident that Community Fibre is delivering a high standard of after-sales care.

We do not currently have survey results or Ofcom data regarding Community Fibre’s customer service; our reviews are regularly checked and updated and we will include this information if it becomes available.

Community Fibre Wi-Fi router

Community Fibre Linksys Velop specifications

  • Wi-Fi: 802.11b/g/n (2.4GHz), 802.11ac (5Ghz) & 802.11ax (5Ghz, with Community Fibre 1 Gig)
  • Dual-band Wi-Fi: Yes
  • Tri-band Wi-Fi: Yes (with Community Fibre 200+)
  • Ethernet: 2x Gigabit ethernet
  • Extras: Mesh Wi-Fi

Community Fibre supplies a Linksys Velop Wi-Fi router with most of its packages. This is either a dual-band model for the 35Mb and 50Mb services or a tri-band version for the faster tiers.

(This means your Community Fibre router will broadcast multiple Wi-Fi signals — two for dual-band, three for the tri-band model — to ensure the best coverage and speed for all your devices).

The Velop is a mesh Wi-Fi router, something that’s a little different to the free hardware supplied by most ISPs.

Mesh Wi-Fi uses ‘nodes’ to extend the Wi-Fi signal around your home, each of which has a dedicated link (known as a backhaul) to the main router, which is separate from the connection your devices use. 

The end result is that mesh Wi-Fi networks are much faster than regular Wi-Fi boosters. They’re also very easy to set up and use, providing a seamless connection with the same network name. As you move around the home, your devices will automatically latch onto the strongest signal.

Additional Velop nodes can be requested from Community Fibre at a cost of £5 per month, which is less than some other ISPs charge for a similar setup. 

However, it's worth noting that each Velop node only offers two wired network ports, whereas most routers have at least four. 

That could be a big limitation if you have multiple wired devices hooked up to your current router. While you can almost certainly use Wi-Fi instead, a wired connection can be faster and more reliable.

Community Fibre: our verdict

Broadband Genie rating: 4.5 / 5

Community Fibre is a provider we would not hesitate to recommend to just about anyone. It offers incredible value, delivering exceptional speeds with prices to suit most budgets. It’s especially good if you need a faster than normal upload speed. 

You also get a decent free router, with a useful mesh Wi-Fi feature that can help solve problems with weak signal coverage. And it offers broadband only as standard, with no requirement to get a phone line or pay line rental. And to top it all off, it has an outstanding customer service record. 

The downsides are few and far between, and largely situational. The phone plan may not be suitable for everyone, particularly if you need to make international calls or rely on a landline for emergencies. And the free router, while more than adequate for many homes, does have a limited number of network ports. 

The biggest problem is that very few of us can get it: Community Fibre is only available in parts of London. But if you are lucky enough to live within its network area, you’ll be hard-pressed to find anything better.

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    This allows us to create an informed, well-balanced review of a provider that’s ultimately the most useful way to determine whether or not a provider is right for you.

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