Just an update.
I called O2 (retentions) who offered six months free broadband (saves me £78), or £22.50/month for their 'all rounder' package which includes line rental and a call package ... but they warned me that throttling kicks in after 100Gb (not very likely but possible in practice) and there is traffic managment between 4pm and 12pm, though couldn't tell me what the actual effect of that is on my speed? I'm currently on the previous 'Premium' option.
... and I've just called Orange technical support (India) who were honest enough to say that 80% of people were happy with the Netgear, but that 20% were not happy with the wireless connection performance, which is what the unhappy Amazon users were saying. No alternative router available, unless they happen to have an old livebox in stock.
Hmmm ... not looking so good now ... maybe 6 months free with O2 is the better option?
Edited by semiartificial (Wed 27-Jul-11 15:20:36)