Broadband Savvy logoThis guide has been written by Broadband Savvy for Digital Unite and provides practical advice on setting up a new broadband connection.

The process for getting yourself connected to a new broadband service is different depending on the type of broadband service you have signed up to:


1. Setting up your fixed-line broadband

Here's what you'll need to do to get online after buying a fixed-line broadband package -

  1. Wait for your broadband router to arrive in the mail. Most broadband packages these days will come with a free router that provides Wi-Fi throughout your home.
  2. Once the router arrives you'll need to plug it into a power outlet and the master phone socket, which is normally located at the front of your house. The cables you need will be included with the router. 
  3. Switch the router on. It will likely take a few minutes to set itself up. When it's ready, a green light will be visible on the front.
  4. On most routers, Wi-Fi will be set up automatically. There will be login details on a sticker on the back of the router, or in the box the router came in.
  5. On your computer, iPad or phone, open the settings app, which normally looks like a white or grey cog. You can normally search for "settings" to find it.
  6. Inside settings, search for "network" or "internet". You should see an option to connect to a Wi-Fi network - look for the network with the same name as shown on the sticker on your router. Click or tap on it, and type in the password provided on the sticker, remembering it will be case-sensitive. Click or tap to proceed, and your device should connect to your new Wi-Fi network. You should only have to input the password once unless you connection drops at any point. You'll need to connect each device you want to use the internet on.

In general, you don't need to worry about cancelling your old broadband plan if you had one - your new provider will take care of this for you.

If you have trouble with any of the above, you can call your ISP and they'll walk you through the process of getting set up.


2. Setting up a mobile broadband connection

When setting up a mobile broadband connection, the process is very similar. Here are the main differences:

  • When you buy a dongle directly from a company such as Vodafone or EE, they will include a SIM card with the device. When the package arrives in the mail, all you need to do is insert the SIM card into the dongle. Then you can plug the dongle into your computer's USB port, and you're good to get online.
  • With a mobile Wi-Fi device, which creates a local Wi-Fi hotspot for multiple devices rather than plugging into your computer directly, you will likely have to remove the back cover and insert the SIM card and the battery. Then you'll have to turn it on, and log in to the Wi-Fi network it creates, using the same process we described above for connecting to a new router. This video gives step-by-step the process of setting up a Mifi device.


This guide is one of three written by Broadband Savvy for Digital Unite. Why not check out the others that cover: Getting the best value internet deal and Troubleshooting a poor internet connection.


Last updated 4th July 2022