John Lewis offers free broadband with every Kindle, tablet and more

Buy any Web-enabled product from John Lewis and you'll get six months of broadband for nothing, as long as you sign a 12-month contract.

Middle-class bazaar John Lewis is offering one less reason to buy your gadgets from Amazon today, with six months of free broadband when you buy any Internet-enabled product.

The free broadband offer will run for at least a year and you can claim it at any point during that time, providing you have kept the receipt for the relevant item. The cheapest qualifying product is Amazon's Kindle, costing £69, but it applies to anything with a Wi-Fi connection, such as tablets and smart TVs.

You'll need to sign a 12-month contract with John Lewis' own broadband service (six months of which will be free) and transfer your phone line. The cheapest option is £24.50 (including £13.50 line rental) for a 16Mbps connection, a 20GB monthly usage limit and a fair amount of traffic shaping.

The best deal seems to be the 'unlimited broadband' package, which costs £31.50 per month for unlimited monthly usage and, as far I can make out from John Lewis' abstruse FAQ page, isn't subject to any traffic shaping. A 38Mbps fibre option is also available for £38.50 per month, with a 100GB monthly limit and some traffic management. You'll need a BT-compatible line for all of the packages, or pay £50 to have one installed.

John Lewis broadband is actually run by Plusnet, which is ultimately owned by BT, although John Lewis says a different team working to different service levels runs its customer support. At the time of writing, Plusnet was offering an equivalent to John Lewis' unlimited package for £18.98 per month for 12 months, which is a chunky monthly saving, but works out slightly more expensive over a year after the six months free.

The offer is all part of John Lewis' strategy to keep its expanding technology departments growing against competition from cut-price online shops and the juggernaut that is Dixons.

Adam Brown, the company's buyer for tablets and telecoms, told me that the retailer already offers long guarantees as standard on items such as TVs to help the shop differentiate itself from the competition. As to whether John Lewis would ever make its own tablet, "We'd only do it if we thought we could do something different."

Good deal? Seen better? Worship at the altar of John Lewis? Or is it only for retired colonels? Let me know in the comments, or over on our never knowingly undersold Facebook page.

 

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