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(Pocket-lint) - John Lewis is offering six months free broadband to “anyone who buys any internet-enabled technology”.  Customers will have the option to sign up for a 12 month contract with John Lewis Broadband, without having to pay for the first six. There are no activation fees, but they will have to pay line rental and call charges, as a landline comes with the package.

Part of the reasoning behind the incentive comes from the fact that most items sold in the store’s electronics department connect to the internet is some fashion. “Everything from computers  to Smart TVs and everything else in between,” Pocket-lint was told by Adam Brown, John Lewis’ buyer for tablets and telecoms.

The UK retailer believes that the free broadband offer complements its reputation for extended warranties and aftersales customer service, so will attract a wide selection of Brits. “We’re quite a broad church in terms of customers. We have a lot of students now. A lot of students are coming to us to buy their first laptop before they go to university,” said Brown.

“There are a lot of older customers coming to us who want to buy their first laptop to talk to their friends and family across the world. And there’s an awful lot of those people in the middle who have had equipment for a long time, but are coming back to us because there’s new and exciting stuff happening.”

And that includes those looking to buy a tablet for the first time. “Tablets is one area where all of a sudden you can buy a genuinely new and exciting piece of equipment that serves a different job to a laptop. So, those people are coming to us for the first time, for sure,” he added.

Brown also explained to us that the tablet market will grow at a faster rate every year, until eventually everybody will have at least one, perhaps more. “Tablet penetration in the UK has roughly doubled in the last couple of years, but it’s still only about 25 per cent. Whereas, I think laptop penetration is about 80 per cent, and TVs probably 85 per cent. There’s a long way to go for tablets. But whether it’s a tablet, a computer, a smartphone or a hybrid of all three of those things, I think everybody will end up having one of them at least,” he explained.

“Actually, I think there is a future where tablets and mobile computing devices become so cheap and powerful that why wouldn’t you have one in every room - much the same way as people have more than one TV.”

And that’s why getting people onto John Lewis Broadband is a canny deal.

John Lewis Broadband comes in three packages. The Standard Broadband deal costs from £24.50 per month on a 12-month deal (£11 broadband, £13.50 line rental and calls). It offers up to 16Mb speeds and is capped to 20GB monthly usage.

Unlimited Broadband is from £31.50 per month, with up to 16Mb speeds, but no cap on monthly usage.

And John Lewis’ Fibre Broadband package costs from £38.50 per month (£25 for the broadband) and offers speeds up to 38Mb with 100GB of monthly usage.

Writing by Rik Henderson. Originally published on 18 April 2013.
Sections TV