ASA Criticises Virgin Media Over Lack of Clarity in Broadband Speeds

UK's Advertising Standards Authority has upheld a complaint brought forward by BT about the speed achieved by Virgin Media's broadband services.

The advertisement targeted was "Hate to Wait?" and BT, one of Virgin Media's fiercest rivals, said it did not reflect the actual speed situations as downloads during peak time would almost certainly be slower due to speed limits imposed by Virgin.

The Virgin Media campaign claimed that customers on its 2mbps package would be able to download a song in 22 seconds and a full length movie show in less than 26 minutes.

Virgin was also accused of misleading customers by wrongly using the term Megabits instead of Megabytes.

Like many of its competitors, Virgin Media has introduced traffic-throttling (or shaping as they like to call it) in order to ensure that the majority of its users benefit from satisfactory speeds most of the time.

This has been made difficult by the rise of popular on-demand TV services like BBC's iPlayer or video sharing websites like Youtube as well as the rise of file sharing and P2P.