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John Lewis Broadband Review 2020

Is John Lewis Broadband any good?

Our John Lewis broadband rating: 3.5 / 5

Not sure if you should choose a John Lewis broadband deal? Read our comprehensive review to see what it offers, what it costs, and how John Lewis stacks up against the competition.

John Lewis Broadband user review

The following ratings from John Lewis customers are taken from our annual home broadband survey. Customers were asked to rate their provider in each category, and the score is the percentage of positive answers. The overall rating is the combined average score.

Customer care: 85%
(average: 81%)

Value for money: 72% 
(average: 70%)

Trust: 87%
(average: 80%)

Would recommend?: 75%
(average: 74%)

Overall John Lewis broadband customer rating: 80%
(average: 76%)

While John Lewis didn't receive any awards in the 2020 survey, it did have a generally strong performance with above-average scores in all categories. It scored particularly well for trust, where it ranked third overall.

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John Lewis broadband - the Broadband Genie review

We like We don't like
  • Unlimited data
  • Free evening and weekend calls
  • 24-hour support from Plusnet
  • Free setup
  • Traffic management policy

John Lewis broadband speed

John Lewis average download speeds vs BT, Sky, TalkTalk, and Virgin Media

  John Lewis BT Sky TalkTalk Virgin Media
ADSL 10Mb 10Mb 11Mb 11Mb N/A
Fibre optic 36Mb / 66Mb 36Mb / 50Mb /  67Mb 36Mb / 59Mb 38Mb / 67Mb 54Mb / 108Mb / 213Mb / 362Mb / 518Mb

John Lewis upload speeds vs BT, Sky, TalkTalk, and Virgin Media

  John Lewis BT Sky TalkTalk Virgin Media
ADSL 1Mb 1Mb 1Mb 1Mb N/A
Fibre optic 9.5Mb / 19.5Mb 9.5Mb / 19.5Mb 9.5Mb / 19Mb 9.5Mb / 19Mb 3Mb / 6Mb / 12Mb / 21Mb

John Lewis is essentially a rebranded Plusnet, so it offers the same speeds as that provider. And since Plusnet uses the BT Openreach telephone network, download and upload speeds are similar to almost every other provider.

John Lewis broadband value for money

John Lewis broadband cheapest package vs BT, Sky, TalkTalk, and Virgin Media

John Lewis Broadband (10Mb) BT Broadband (10Mb) Sky Broadband Essential (11Mb) TalkTalk Fast Broadband (11Mb) Virgin Media M50 (54Mb)
£20 £26.99 £22 £22.95 £38

John Lewis broadband fastest package vs BT, Sky, TalkTalk, and Virgin Media

John Lewis Fibre Extra (66Mb) BT Fibre 2 (67Mb) Sky Broadband Superfast (59Mb) TalkTalk Superfast Fibre (67Mb) Virgin Media M500 (516Mb)
£32.50 £31.99 £27 £26 £52

Last checked October 2020. Prices displayed above are the initial contract cost for new customers. Price may increase after renewal. Cheapest price is the lowest monthly cost regardless of speed; the fastest price is the fastest service available on Broadband Genie for the lowest cost. Does not include TV bundles or special offers.

John Lewis offers good value on entry-level ADSL deals; not the very cheapest, but less than some of the major providers. The same can't be said of its fibre optic packages, the fastest of which is beaten on price by almost all the big names, except Virgin Media.

However, it's worth noting there are no setup costs with John Lewis, and you get free evening and weekend calls included as standard.

John Lewis broadband features and extras

As well as the free evening and weekend calls, John Lewis also gives every customer free Bullguard antivirus. Aside from that, there aren't any other notable extras included.

John Lewis does run regular free gift reward offers for new customers. It often gives away gadgets such as Google Home smart speakers, and you can sometimes find exclusive deals on Broadband Genie.

John Lewis broadband Wi-Fi router

John Lewis ADSL broadband deals include a Netgear WNR1000 Wi-Fi router. It's easy to use, but only offers the older 802.11n (aka Wi-Fi 4) standard and 4x 100Mb wired network connections. Perfectly sufficient for many homes, but if you have more advanced requirements, you may find it lacking.

The ZyXEL VMG8924 included with John Lewis fibre deals is significantly better. It supports the faster 802.11ac (Wi-Fi 5), has gigabit network ports, and provides more advanced features.

John Lewis broadband home phone plans

As well as the free evening and weekend calls included in all John Lewis deals, you can also add the following call plans to your package:

  • Anytime: £5 per month. Free landline calls at any time.
  • Anytime and international: £7 per month. Free UK landline calls at any time. 300 minutes to 35 international destinations.

There is also a mobile bolt-on available for £5 per month which provides free anytime calls to UK mobile.

John Lewis broadband review conclusion

Our John Lewis broadband rating: 3.5 / 5

While not overburdened with features and free extras, John Lewis offers reasonably good value for money. You get a generous free call package, free setup, decent Wi-Fi router, transparent pricing, and benefit from Plusnet's award-winning customer service.

You could save a few quid by going with Plusnet instead as they are essentially the same service. But where John Lewis differs is its lack of geographical pricing; the cost is the same no matter where you live. If you've been told that your preferred provider is going to cost more because of your location, then John Lewis broadband is a safe choice as it does not apply such policies.

John Lewis does use traffic management, though if you dig into the small print, it appears to only apply in exceptional circumstances. But if you'd rather not ever worry about being restricted in this way there are numerous providers which have truly unlimited service.

More broadband reviews

We review every provider we list on Broadband Genie. Check out the following reviews for our thoughts on other ISPs: