I'm sure it came as a surprise to many when I let people know that I was changing ISP. When I mentioned Andrews & Arnold, responses similar to the above were not uncommon. However, there are a number of reasons why I left Demon for them, some of which are:
Poor reliability of my old “all copper line” broadband service, particularly in recent months. Demon's response never really got me anywhere – on two occasions I was asked to refer the matter to BT myself, once getting my line remade from the junction box, and another time getting no action taken. A bit of thinking “outside the box”, not being a slave to a script, might have helped there. Andrews & Arnold came very highly recommended for getting things put right.
I sent email specifically asking about any plans Demon had for “Fibre to the Cabinet” service, and the availability of IPv6. I received no answer at all. On checking the details of Andrews & Arnold, it turned out that they did both of these. I did take FTTC, but then moved house and had to get a copper line service.
To get DNS amended with Demon often took me emailing or even faxing them the details, then waiting for them to be put on the system (usually quite quickly, it has to be said). With Andrews & Arnold, there is a simple web interface. Of course, there are always delays between amending DNS and the results being seen by everyone, but even so, the ability to control my own DNS without having to run a DNS server myself is a definite plus point.
Demon had a fairly generous, and not too harsh, fair usage policy, but it was quite difficult to understand and not easy to be sure where you were with it. Andrews & Arnold have a simpler policy whereby you can pay for a quantity and add to it later, on their Home::1 service, which is relatively new. On their standard service, they charge a certain amount for each unit of usage, with unused ones carrying forward for one month, and provided you can afford it, you really can have as much as you'd like. The amount you get for a unit varies with the time of day. No matter which service you are on, you can see your usage on a web page.
I'm not saying their service is definitely for you – but if you are reasonably knowledgeable, you might prefer their way of working.
Andrews & Arnold did send me a new router – a Technicolor TG582n – which works very nicely with their service. There were one or two little problems with it at first, and one that, although my own making, was exacerbated by a quirk of the router. I was able to get help on this, over IRC, and even managed to get my own underestimate put right, after hours, which I did not expect.
I found the firewall on the TG582n a little baffling at first, but eventually worked out how to set it up. I have written a page of guidance which you may find helpful if you intend to do the same.
Test your readiness for IPv6