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Sky redefines ultrafast as just 50 Mbps with its UFO product
Wednesday 02 September 2015 11:01:16 by Andrew Ferguson

Someone pointed out to Mark over at ISPreview that Sky has released some pricing for its UFO service (FTTH) in York and you can read the fairly spartan page at

  • 50 Mbps Guaranteed Speeds, £10 per month plus £16.40 Sky Line Rental
  • 100 Mbps Guaranteeed Speeds, £20 per month plus £16.40 Sky Line Rental
  • up to 940 Mbps, £30 per month plus £16.40 Sky Line rental

The pricing is different to what TalkTalk are offering, and even the entry level 50 Mbps service from Sky is more expensive than the up to 940 Mbps service from TalkTalk.

The most interesting point is that the ultrafast label has been applied to the 50 Mbps service, when the general consensus is that for a service to be called ultrafast it should be 100 Mbps or faster. If Sky persist with this wording, then we can expect BT Retail to refer to its up to 76 Mbps service as ultrafast too, which will muddy the waters even more, so Sky please do change the wording.

The observant will notice the lack of 'up to' qualifiers on the 50 Mbps and 100 Mbps products, replaced with the word guarantee we presume that since Virgin Media and other fixed connection speed services use up to, Sky is actually saying that their will be no contention in their network and that the only slow downs will be down to things like Wi-Fi speed losses in your own home. The up to 940 Mbps service carries the 'up to' reflecting that even with the CityFibre network behind you, offering uncontended Gigabit at this price point is not feasible.

The area of York where the rollout is taking place means there will be stiff competition for customers, as FTTC and cable based services are already available to many.


Posted by asylum_seeker about 1 year ago
Sky can guarantee speeds of 50mbps on their UFO product. They can guarantee 100mbps on their UFO Plus product. Yet they can't guarantee speeds of 940mbps on their UFO Pro product. Why is that? Network contention?
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) about 1 year ago
Network contention, just because you have FTTH, the backhaul network still exists and the contention that will exist in this.
Posted by adslmax about 1 year ago
FTTC cost £19.99 for 80Mbps but 940Mbps cost just £10 extra! Time to call FTTC to reduced by £10 less!
Posted by generallee94 about 1 year ago
@adslmax - the costs for providing and maintaining FTTC are probably much higher than the private FTTH network built by Sky and TalkTalk!

Posted by iand about 1 year ago
Ultrafast. I assume this by definition if not contended so SKY are therefore assuming a Guaranteed Speed of 50 is Ultrafast. It is all marketing anyway...
Posted by binary about 1 year ago
For what it's worth, SSE call their up to 76Mbps FTTC product "Ultrafast".
Posted by Garndell about 1 year ago
I am not a huge fan of regulation but in this case I think regulating what is Ultrafast (100Mbit+) and what isn't (50Mbit) speed wise would be great for consumers.
Posted by generallee94 about 1 year ago
Fast = >24Mb/s,
Superfast >100Mb/s,
Ultrafast = 100Mb/s >
Posted by generallee94 about 1 year ago
The "advertising" of Fast, Superfast and Ultrafast seems to vary by providers but remember saying some time back that the whole categories system was a bit wrong anyway due to ADSL being advertised as fast many years ago when it was up to 16Mb/s and even 2Mb/s was classed as fast.
Posted by generallee94 about 1 year ago
IMO, nothing is ultrafast until you hit 1Gb/s and also still have this huge divide between Downstream & Upstream, which IMO degrades any category of providers offerings,

For example Virgin Media will never be considered Ultrafast with there upcoming 300Mb/s offering as the upload speed is destined to still sit <10% of the downstream, not that FTTx is doing any wonders in that department either thought of course!
Posted by generallee94 about 1 year ago
The fact that FTTC "can" be sold with up to 25% of its downstream (80Mb/s) as upstream (20Mb/s) is still something Virgin cannot keep up with.

For Virgin to match the 25% they would need to work out how to provide 75Mbps upload to its 300Mb/s customer base
(not going to happen anytime soon)

Also isn't it also worth noting that these fast 300Mb/s downstream speeds need to use upload to keep in contact with the locations it streams data from, and the faster it downloads the more upstream bandwidth is required to communicate???
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