/ Technology

Why I left Sky for Plusnet TV

Pointing a remote control at a TV

After nearly 14 years as a Sky customer, I’ve just cancelled. I’ve only ever been on the basic Sky+ package but at nearly £30 a month – and with regular price hikes – it began to feel like an albatross around my neck.

The problem was, I couldn’t get rid of it because my kids wanted to watch channels like Disney and my husband wanted Eurosport. How could I save cash but keep everyone happy?

When I first got Sky, the world was a different place with painfully slow dial-up internet and buffering videos, so watching via a satellite made complete sense. But now we have super-fast fibre internet at home and watching video is no longer a tedious experience.

What’s the best way to watch TV with the family?

Sites such as YouTube have become a great place to catch up on old TV shows and all sorts of videos. But for me, TV should be about relaxing together as a family around a big screen.

This led me to experiment with devices such as the Google Chromecast and Apple TV which can send whatever you’re watching on your computer, phone or tablet, and see them on your TV. These worked fine but I felt the content was limited, – although they do offer apps such as Netflix.

What I was after was a way to watch just the channels my family love at the cheapest price. Sky seems to have gone down the opposite route, offering me more and more channels, box sets, on-the-move TV etc.

Can you have too much TV choice?

Sky is Britain’s biggest pay TV provider with lots of TV options, the widest choice of TV channels and HD channels, from sports including Premier League matches, to the latest blockbusters from Sky Movies, plus catch-up and on-demand TV content.

But it became like how I now feel going into a Tesco hypermarket after discovering the joys of Aldi. There’s just too much choice and it feels like an irritation rather than a benefit.

Ironically it was Sky’s NOWTV service that led me to leave the Sky mothership. It offered me the Disney Channel – meaning happy children! And, for less money than I was paying before, I could now also subscribe to its movie option so we can have as many family movie nights as we want rather than constantly buying DVDs.

I teamed it up with a FreeSat box and, voila, I was free!

But a month or so in, I spotted an email from my broadband provider Plusnet. It seemed to suit my needs more perfectly – Disney Channel and Eurosport (I’d had to pay for a subscription directly from it when I was with NOWTV).

Plus my nine-year-old daughter can now record any programmes she wants. She’s no child of the 1970s like me, happy to wait for the programme to be shown when the TV scheduler decides. She wants to watch what she wants when she wants so her limited tv-viewing time is used to maximum effect.

I’ve only just signed up, so it will be interesting to see how it works out in practice.

Do you think Sky is worth the cost? Have you been able to get the perfect mix of channels for the cheapest price?

Peter M says:
18 October 2016

I was in an almost identical situation. I had been a Sky customer for a long time, at least by my standards, six years in our current home and at least four years in our previous. I had never liked the pricing but options at the start were very limited. The price hikes really annoyed me especially when I learned that Sky have a customer retention policy of giving people a discount when they threaten to leave and make it all the way to the last step of actually leaving. I don’t like haggling, I always feel like I’ve been lied to, even if I manage to haggle someone down. I discovered Plusnet was doing a TV service in the first week they were offering it. I had already gotten rid of my Sky broadband because the service was terrible and the customer service was abysmal; I caught them in a lie several times and they liked that about as much as I did. I had them hang up on me at least twice; once when I pointed out that in fact I don’t owe them money to return the box (it was in the contract I had, clearly written, but it had changed for new customers, another way to screw people). As soon as the Sky customer service representative realised they were wrong they straight up just hung up on me. I’ve used every major provider and arrived at Plusnet last. They’re the best by a wide margin for price, speed and service. The only good thing about Sky is that they’re not BT but that’s not exactly a benefit.

Short story: I went from paying Sky £40 per month to £11 a month with Plusnet and a YouView box. Every channel I want is there (even Disney Junior) and I’ve never been happier with any companies customer support or pricing. I’m paying less for my maximum speed, actually unlimited fibre broadband PLUS premium television than I used to pay for just Sky TV itself. The whole TV / phone / fibre broadband package is cheaper than just Sky TV with Plusnet.

Rupert Murdoch is a bit unhappy with the success of Plusnet though since he’s taken the availability of Fox away from the Plusnet TV packages… and nothing of value was lost for me, but I can still get it elsewhere if I want and it will still end up a lot cheaper. There is nothing on Sky that you can’t get elsewhere. The Sky exclusives (Sky Atlantic for example) that you may want to keep are available as single packages which can be watched on something like NowTV. It will still cost less to buy premium packages on NowTV and get the rest for a provider like Plusnet. NowTV + Plusnet = cheaper than Sky by a significant margin and you’re not losing anything.

Do yourselves a service and change to Plusnet at the first opportunity.

Pete D says:
26 January 2017

i have gone back to sky Hd Plus for a year .but wont pay £38.50 in a years time.. broadband i have plusnet fibre unlimited no problems. nowtv is very good, and i have netflix .personally sky seems to be loosing market share i hear. the modern people us will get there tv online and pay for what we want to watch that’s the way its going i think. maybe sky needs to have a rethink its very expensive for tv entertainment packages.subscription


Your right Pete straight from the media business share websites , its not worrying them yet but if it continues it will. Sky can raise prices by 10 % in a year and every 12 months and you cant leave in the contracted time without paying the FULL cost of the minimum term–and the minimum term is–12 months and for those quoting OFCOM – it doesn’t cover subscription TV . And then there is actually being ABLE to leave read some of the posted complaints on websites .

George says:
5 May 2017

It’s surprising how many of us feel foolish for staying with Sky over many years once we’ve made the move to cancel for good. Like many others we have haggled with Sky for a better deal or down-graded to off-set their constant price hikes only to find within a few months along comes another subscription increase and you are back to square one. Having been with Sky for over 20 years we left March 2017. Leaving wasn’t an easy process as Sky offered one special deal after another, but all this just made us feel like we’ve been ripped-off over the years. Having got rid of this blood sucking leech, we subscribed to Netflix for less than £6 per month. Between Freeview and Netflix we haven’t missed Sky at all. We still receive emails from Sky offering stupid offers to return, most of which are under £10 per month and one offer of 6 Months Free. All this just serves to anger us; as a reminder of our foolishness for staying with them for so long.

Ben says:
24 May 2017

When we moved to our new-build house about 12 years ago, the Sky salesman was going from door to door trying to flog his wares. Excitedly, he announced that Sky were connecting up our street FOR FREE!! ) his excitement, not mine).

I wasn’t, and still aren’t, interested. The salesman couldn’t quite understand or believe that I didn’t want to sign on the dotted line right there and then…

I would go for Virgin TiVo if our street had been cabled up by Virgin, as the mark one TiVo that I had from 2002 to 2013 was far and away the best PVR I have ever used. We still miss it, despite Humax and Panasonic PVR’s. Early TiVo was ironically supported (EPG and so on) for years by Sky.


Just a technical point Ben Sky piggy-back BT Fibre ,when they come round the street looking for customers it means they have installed their own equipment in BT telephone exchanges , its called Unbundling , others do the same. When they talk of “connecting up” they mean entering your home and connecting up their apparatus. VM do “cable up ” your street with their own cable.

Richard Smith says:
27 May 2017

I want to see the list of programs offered on plusnet tv+
Compared to Sky tv.
I am considering changing to you view Tv + Can I see a list of available tv channels from you view+.
I need answers now before I sigh up. I also want the total cost set up.


Richard -latest update- 8-5-2017 go to : http://www.a516digital.com/p/youview-channel-listing.html also : https://www.broadbandchoices.co.uk/providers/plusnet-tv and yes -click on -compare Plusnet packages –for prices .