Virgin looks to 400Mbits/sec broadband

Virgin Media will offer 100Mbit/sec broadband by the end of year, and is already looking at technology to handle 400Mbits/sec speeds.

Virgin looks to 400Mbits/sec broadband

The 100Mbits/sec connections will arrive by the fourth quarter of the year, and Virgin is also running a trial of 200Mbits/sec broadband, a spokesperson told PC Pro.

While the 200Mbits/sec trial has recently been extended to a new testing ground in Coventry, there’s no arrival date scheduled yet.

Virgin is also developing a modem capable of handling 400Mbits/sec connections, based on its DOCSIS 3 spec, set to launch by the end of the year. “We’re not launching 400Mbits/sec, but we’re preparing for a future of faster speeds,” the spokesman said.

Virgin has also identified a million and half homes it hopes to add to its network. Half a million of those are in new build homes, where cable can be laid as part of the building process, or existing neighbourhoods, where cable hasn’t yet been rolled out but is possible.

The other million is through the use of cables strung overhead via telegraph poles, following a trial in Berkshire.

That trial has been a “quite remarkable” success, the spokesman said. “It works, it works really well,” he said. “We’ve demonstrated it’s possible to use this method to connect more rural areas.”

The success of the trial comes after the Government said it was looking to force utilities to open up their infrastructure to broadband providers.

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