KCOM - the Broadband Genie review
|We like||We don’t like|
KCOM broadband speed
KCOM average speeds vs BT, Sky, TalkTalk, and Virgin Media
|ADSL download speed||N/A||10Mb||11Mb||11Mb||N/A|
|ADSL upload speed||N/A||2Mb||1Mb||1Mb||N/A|
|Fibre download speed||100Mb / 300Mb / 500Mb / 900Mb||36Mb / 50Mb / 67Mb||59Mb||38Mb / 67Mb||54Mb / 108Mb / 213Mb / 362Mb / 516Mb|
|Fibre upload speed||30Mbp / 75Mb / 100Mb / 180Mb||9.5Mb / 19.5Mb||19Mb||9.5Mb / 19Mb||5Mb / 10Mb / 20Mb / 36Mb|
Thanks to its full fibre network, KCOM broadband is extremely fast. Its entry-level 100Mb package is more than enough for many homes, and if that's not enough it tops out at an average 900Mb.
It is shame that KCOM does not offer symmetrical broadband (meaning the download and upload speeds are the same), though this isn't something most people will miss, and its top upload rate of 180Mb is still significantly better than what we can get in most of the country at present.
KCOM value for money
KCOM Broadband cheapest package vs BT, Sky, TalkTalk, and Virgin Media
|KCOM Full Fibre 100 (100Mb)||BT Fibre Essential (36Mb)||Sky Essential Plus (11Mb)||TalkTalk Fibre 35 (38Mb)||Virgin Media M100 (108Mb)|
Vodafone Broadband fastest package vs BT, Sky, TalkTalk, and Virgin Media
|KCOM Full Fibre 900 (900Mb)||BT Fibre 2 (67Mb)||Sky Superfast (59Mb)||TalkTalk Fibre 65 (67Mb)||Virgin Media M500 (516Mb)|
Last checked September 2021. The prices displayed above are the initial contract cost for new customers; charges may increase after renewal. The cheapest price is the lowest monthly cost regardless of speed. The fastest price is the fastest service available on Broadband Genie for the lowest monthly cost.
Due to KCOM’s unusual position in the UK broadband market, a direct price comparison is of limited use because you cannot get any of the other options if you live within its network area. But it does serve to illustrate why having multiple competing providers is good for the customer.
Virgin Media is perhaps the most directly comparable service to KCOM as it offers a similar range of speeds, but often at much lower prices. Its 100Mb package is available for less than £30, while 300Mb can be yours for about the same price that KCOM charges for 100Mb.
Of course, this doesn’t mean much when KCOM is your only option, but the relatively high price of its packages means you should think carefully about what speed you actually need to ensure you’re not paying for something that isn’t being used to its full potential.
KCOM features and extras
Besides the usual free Wi-Fi router, there are no notable benefits or extras included with KCOM broadband deals.
However, the free router is decent. You’ll receive either a KCOM Lighthub A (a Zyxel XMG3927) or a Lighthub B (Technicolor DGA4231) and either will suit the majority of households.
They both offer dual-band Wi-Fi with support for 802.11ac as well as 802.11n networks, so you can benefit from faster wireless data transfer speeds using newer hardware while still remaining compatible with older devices. Each router also includes 4x gigabit ethernet ports for fast wired networking, and there are a couple of USB ports for sharing printers and hard drives over your home network.
They even support a 4G backup connection if you slot a mobile broadband dongle into one of its USB ports, though this is not a feature offered by KCOM so it’ll be up to you to set it up.
KCOM Broadband review conclusion
Our KCOM Broadband rating: 3.5 / 5
KCOM offers extremely fast download speeds that are far better than those currently available in many other parts of the UK. Although not everyone within KCOM’s network area will be able to get FTTP right now, it does cover many premises (and you can still get ADSL or FTTC broadband).
It also has some good value inclusive call bundles, and the free routers are of a decent standard with all the essential features plus useful extras for power users.
On the downside, it’s a shame that KCOM (much like Virgin Media) does not provide upload speeds that are as impressive as its download rates. It is also fairly expensive in comparison to the deals available to those of us outside Hull, though it does offer cheap packages for benefits recipients.