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How do I find the best TV and internet provider for my French home?

We look at the online tools which can help you shop around for the best offer

We look at how you can compare different internet and TV deals in France Pic: Ultraskrip / Shutterstock

Reader Question: I have recently bought an apartment in Nice. How do I find out if cable is available and how do I find out the best internet deal?

As it is a major city, most people in Nice are now able to access fibre-optic internet (known as ‘la fibre’), though it will depend on whether or not your building is connected up for this. 

Note that this, which offers the fastest connection, is not strictly-speaking the same as ‘cable’, which was formerly the best option for ‘fast’ broadband, as compared to ADSL technology. Fibre uses flexible strands of glass to transmit the information as light, whereas cable, which was originally mostly used for TV, uses coaxial cables and transmits data via electricity.

You would presumably have asked when buying the flat if and how it is connected up, but if not your building’s syndic management body, or your neighbours, should be able to tell you if it is the case and which firms’ services are accessible (this depends on action taken by the different firms to connect up with your property).

If you have a choice of options, then there are several comparison sites available to help you with choosing a television and internet provider in France. 

France’s main internet and telecom providers, including Free, SFR, Bouygues and Orange, now commonly offer internet, television and phone packages, with varied combinations of allowances, channels and calls. 

The Bouygues BBox Must, for example, gives access to 180 TV channels, while the Freebox Pop comes with up to 220 channels.

It is often possible to choose the channels you want to watch as part of these deals. For example, SFR offers a bouquet (package) including British TV or Indian TV for a small additional fee. 

Consumer group Que Choisir has an internet operator comparison tool, and many of the deals listed also include television and phone services. 

Similarly, Le Lynx offers an internet package comparator – with or without television – which is based on the town in which you live. 

If you enter your address, you will be presented with results which are available in your area from different providers. 

This is also the case with Selectra. Another comparison site is TousLesForfaits.

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