Arab Today, arab today virgin media to double the speed
Last Updated : GMT 05:43:04
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today

Virgin Media to double the speed

Arab Today, arab today

Arab Today, arab today Virgin Media to double the speed

London - Arabstoday

Virgin Media will double the speed of its broadband service for over four million of its customers, the company has said. The upgrade, which begins in February, will also see the service\'s top speed increase from 100Mbps to 120Mbps. The full roll-out is expected to be complete by mid-2013 at a cost to the company of £110m. The Prime Minister, David Cameron, said the investment would be a \"great boost\" to the UK. \"I welcome this announcement from Virgin Media,\" Mr Cameron said in a statement. \"It will provide a great boost for the economy and change the way many households, consumers and businesses use the internet.\" \"Rolling out superfast broadband across the country is a critical part of our plan to upgrade the UK\'s infrastructure and build a new and smarter economy.\" The government has set targets to improve the UK\'s broadband speeds considerably in the next three years. Culture secretary Jeremy Hunt said: \"Faster broadband speeds are great for customers and great for business, which is why our policy is to deliver superfast broadband to 90% of the country by 2015. \"Virgin Media\'s plans to double broadband speeds are really exciting and we applaud their ambition.\" Last year BT announced it was investing £2.5bn to make fibre broadband available to two-thirds of UK premises by the end of 2015. It promised significant improvements to most homes, while even faster broadband - around 300Mbps - will become available in certain \"superfast\" areas. Free of charge Virgin Media\'s upgrade will mean customers currently signed up for 10Mbps will be boosted to 20Mbps, while users on 20Mbps and 30Mbps packages will both be upped to 60Mbps. It means their subscribers can get their television, movies and songs even more quickly than they could before, which is obviously good news” End Quote Torin Douglas BBC media correpsondent Those on 50Mbps will be increased to 100Mbps. Customers already on the top 100Mbps tariff will be raised to 120Mbps - the fastest speed Virgin Media is currently able to provide. The company said bandwidth usage limits will also be doubled to accommodate the increased speed. Most customers will not notice the upgrades taking place, nor will any have to pay for the changes to take place, a spokesman said. However, some users with old modems and other similar hardware will receive new up-to-date equipment free of charge. Fernando Elizalde, a principal analyst from Gartner who specialises in consumer broadband, said he believed Virgin Media\'s investment in expanding its broadband capability was sound. \"In the last year and a half, multiple connections in the home and online video have caught up so much that it justifies having this high amount of bandwidth,\" he told the BBC. \"But there is still the question about rural areas. Virgin still cover mostly urban areas - they don\'t reach as many people in rural areas as BT and other telecoms providers.\" According to Ookla, a company which uses monitors broadband speed tests across the world, the UK ranks around 35th globally when ranked by broadband consumer download speed - an average of 11.65Mbps. Virgin Media say that when the roll-out is complete, that average could rise to around 16.46Mbps. Based on Ookla\'s research, which gathers data from millions of speed tests, the increase would rank UK the 19th-fastest globally when compared to today\'s standards. \'Competitive advantage\' The BBC\'s media correspondent Torin Douglas said the service improvement will come at an opportune time as more bandwidth-heavy services like Lovefilm and Netflix, which launched this week in the UK, begin to start attracting larger numbers. \"It means their subscribers can get their television, movies and songs even more quickly than they could before, which is obviously good news,\" he said. Libre optic cables BT is investing in upgrading the UK\'s ageing and slow copper infrastructure \"But Virgin still hasn\'t managed to convince the majority of consumers that their system is better than broadband that comes down the telephone line.\" \"Until they do, they won\'t be able to establish a real competitive advantage.\" Virgin Media\'s chief executive Neil Berkett said: \"The internet has become an integral part of our social, work and family lives, so we think our customers are going to love this.\" \"As people are increasingly doing more online, and getting connected to the internet with lots of different devices, having a fast, reliable broadband service should not be a luxury.\" \"We want to make sure that consumers have access to the best value broadband service and that means a superfast connection.\"  

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