Knowledge Base

Slow Internet - speed comparison 02 giffgaff

Started by: galfredus
On: 16/09/2015 | 19:12
Replies: 19

by: galfredus
on: 16/09/2015 | 19:12

If anyone else is suffering poor internet coverage from giffgaff, you might like to hear my story.


I recently moved out of London to a town with poor reception for EE/T-mobile (my mobile provider since 2001).  After some research and talking to locals I decided that O2 would provide the best signal.  Trying to be clever I decided to give giffgaff a go - I like the idea, I like the efficient model, I like the price (don't we all?!).


Phone reception is brilliant, but internet is patchy at best at home.  It is on the train to work (Cambridge line into London) that I noticed the real difference.  The phone often wouldn't provide any data at all, and when it did it was slow, even when the signal showed 3G and five bars of reception.  This was far worse than the reception EE had provided on the same journey.


Is it the O2 network?  I knew EE claimed to have the best coverage, perhaps this was just par for the O2 course?  I looked at lots of posts on the giffgaff boards - some say that O2 customers get priority, others deny this and suggest various changes to settings, re-settings, re-starting phone, etc, which is meant to help giffgaff connect to the internet.


I tried pretty much all of them, and occasionally it seemed to work doing the manual network search, but it still fell far short of what I needed. Having wasted a great deal of time during my train journeys when I would like to be working, I decided to get an O2 sim.


I have since carried out some tests.  One in a busy area of a city, presumably with a number of transmitter options, and another in the middle of nowehere in Bedfordshire (presumably with limited transmitters and only two bars of signal).


I am not technically clever, I simply shared my internet connection and tethered my laptop (as I do on the train), alternately with the giffgaff and O2 sims.  Now, those who are technically clever will be able to tell us the true meaning of this, but from my point of view the results speak for themselves.


Sitting on Cmabridge railway station on a Thursday afternoon, I ran the test at  three times on each sim alternately.  


Average score for giffgaff:


Download 1.48

Upload 2.61

Ping 217.5


Average score for O2:


Download 7.3

Upload 2.65

Ping 340


Sitting today in Cranfield, Bedfordshire:


Average score for giffgaff


Download 2.36

Upload 2.9

Ping 137


Average score for O2


Download 21.3

Upload 3.73

Ping 165


Would I be correct in interpreting that as saying O2 is many times faster than giffgaff (for downloads), same phone, same place, same time?  It certainly feels that way when using the tethered laptop on the internet.


I guess it boils down to getting what one pays for.




Message 1 of 20
by: bernienatch
on: 16/09/2015 | 19:21
Spot on m8. 😊
Message 2 of 20
by: donkey14
on: 16/09/2015 | 19:42
It is truth. Gg is always a lot slower than O2 or even Asda ( using also O2 masts). So your tests are correct. Answer is: if you looking for speed go to O2 and forget Gg. Specialy if you using internet for work. I did the same but I moved to 3 network. ✌
Message 3 of 20
by: skmidlands
on: 16/09/2015 | 20:19
Data is awful. I'm constantly getting E or G speeds in the Midlands
Message 4 of 20
by: brodian76
on: 16/09/2015 | 20:22
I've had poor signal for over a week now. It needs to be sorted anyone help.
Message 5 of 20
by: galfredus
on: 17/09/2015 | 10:46
Thanks all. I was expecting a vigorous defence from GG and loyal users. Seems this is just common knowledge! I'll be off to O2 next week, and looking forward to a massive productivity hike as a result. It'll cost me a fiver a month, but a small price to pay for doing away with the urge to throw my phone out the train window because it's so bloomin slow... My advice to GG would be to play up their business model, their ethos and their community, buy more data from O2 and charge big data users accordingly. I would have rather stayed with GG, but I see no point buying data I can't physically use...
Message 6 of 20
by: bigdaveuk
on: 17/09/2015 | 10:55
giffgaff are slow its coz we are on there network, now if giffgaff had there own network speed would be better.
Get a free giffgaff Sim
Message 7 of 20
by: rachel_mckelvey
on: 17/09/2015 | 12:11

Its poor for me all the time, its usually E on my phone and have to rely on wifi. I was on o2 previously and its 100% restricted on giffgaff

Message 8 of 20
by: ickl101
on: 17/09/2015 | 12:58
@donkey14 said " a lot slower than O2 or even Asda ( using also O2 masts)" No it doesn't. ASDA is an EE MVNO.
Message 9 of 20
by: ickl101
on: 17/09/2015 | 13:02
@bigdaveuk Giffgaff is 100% owned by "O2" (Telefonica UK). It's just operated as an MVNO on its parents network.
Message 10 of 20