Virgin Media piled more pressure on other UK Broadband players after it announced that it was going to upgrade all its customers on the recently discontinued 2mbps service to 10mbps for free.
The company will be the only one in the UK to offer a whole range of broadband speeds above the 10mbps ceiling. The two other packages available are 20mbps and 50mbps.
The 10mbps, which is now the company's entry level offer, costs £14 per month but requires the user to subscribe to a £11 phone line (which comes with free weekend calls), effectively bringing the price up to £25 per month.
The migration, which will affect 2.6 million households, is expected to take place from May and according to VM's press release will be the "largest-scale speed upgrade ever to take place in the UK."
According to file transfer tests performed by Virgin at the end of last year, average throughput performance for Virgin media was 6.9mbps compared to BT's 3.4mbps, Tiscali's 2.5mbps while Orange's 2.1mbps and Pipex 1.2mbps were well off target.
Virgin Media's move was motivated by the fact that high bandwidth services like BBC's iPlayer and online gaming have become more prevalent, demanding faster internet lines.
The ISP's 20mbps broadband connection is currently available for a mere £31 per month while the XXL Broadband model is available for £46 per month. All prices include a mandatory phone line.
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Interestingly, getting a phone line could bring down the price of your broadband line; the 50mbps Broadband XXL sheds £4 per month which should cover the cost of a mobile dongle - which costs a mere £5 per month when taking a L or XL broadband package. Virgin Media is also the only company that offers a Quad Play service allowing existing customers to cut a deal on their mobile contracts as well.
(Virgin Media PR)
(Broadband TV News)