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Virgin Media 50Mbps broadband trial
Tuesday 18 September 2007 15:22:33 by John Hunt

50Mbps broadband sound like a distant future? Not if you live in Ashford, Folkestone or Dover. The Virgin Media trial for the 50Mbps broadband service may be available to you if you live in one of these areas.

Ashford has entered upon "Phase 2", with 50Mbps service available to all Virgin Media customers in the area for £47 a month (the charge is in place of any existing cable modem service charges). The trial will run from the 1st of October until the 31st of December. For the conditions, and to sign up, see here.

Folkestone is also currently running a free trial until the beginning of October, after which you can either switch back to your existing service, or pay a subscription fee (expected to be in line with the Ashford charge) to receive the 50Mbps service. Sign up here.

Dover will be running the trial and service should be available from the start of October 2007. No pricing details have been announced as yet. Details and sign up form for Dover are here.


Posted by imbsuk over 10 years ago
Not impressed, why don't ISPs realise upload speeds are very important on the internet too. You may have 50Mbps download but it still takes you half an hour to upload all your photos?
Posted by wispy over 10 years ago
That comment just goes to show why ISP's are always going to be up against it. 1.5mb upload speeds for half an hour would transfer something like 300mb of data - thats a lot of photos! Some people will never be happy! (No offence)
Posted by shimah over 10 years ago
It's not worth it. It's provided by Virgin Media.
Posted by t1m103 over 10 years ago
you would of thought that sorting out the rubbish 20mb service would be more important than trying out faster speeds,as long as your paying the money virgin dont give a hoot about anybody but themselves.
Posted by FRS_Plunderer over 10 years ago
this pleases me.
Posted by Dawn_Falcon over 10 years ago
So it traffic shapes to 10MBit?

Also, GG Virgin requesting personal details on an unencrypted form.
Posted by CARPETBURN over 10 years ago
LMFAO considering at certain times if you use your connection in a fashion Vigin deem too much they cut the speed by upto 75% this so called 50Mb service is nothing more than a joke..... 50Mb yes... 50Mb 24/7... errr Nope.
Posted by john (Favicon staff member) over 10 years ago
If you actually want 50Mbps 24/7 expect to pay many thousands of pounds a year. If you were to go to docklands, where most of the UK Internet infrastructure is, and were after 50Mbps of bandwidth to connect to a computer, you'd probably pay in the region of �500 upto maybe �3000 per month or more for uncontended 50Mbps of bandwidth. Getting something vaguely in that speed region at �47 / month in the middle of nowhere (comparatively) sounds like a bargain to me!
Posted by adriandaz over 10 years ago
Perhaps, but it should be an UPTO 50Mbit service... all good and well them hooking you up to the cab at 50Mbit... but for how many minutes of the day will you achieve it?
Posted by jrawle over 10 years ago
So this will inevitably mean the rest of us on Virgin cable will suffer from an even poorer service. Their network doesn't have unlimited capacity. 20Mb/s and on-demand TV have already taken their toll. What new usage restrictions await us?
Posted by dago over 10 years ago
Virgin Im supposed to be on 8meg what a joke they take my money I get 60k download 360k upload "throttleing-traffic shaping" I get no help from technical services every excuse under the sun except the truth Iget 5meg in the early morning then it gets worse as the day goes on and I get numerous disconnections
Posted by Dave2150 over 10 years ago
HAHA! Id like to see how BT answer this with their pathetic copper and aluminium cobwebs.
Posted by FRS_Plunderer over 10 years ago
If you bothered to read the thread you'd know the answer.
Posted by imbsuk over 10 years ago
wispy - 30 mins wasn't a literal figure, it was just used to illustrate that it'll take an unsatisfactory amount of time. Whether ISPs like it or not uploading is part of the internet, to be bogged down when trying to do something as every day as uploading some photos is hardly the epitome of a cutting edge service, no matter what their marketing would have you believe.
Posted by OldSchoolSoldier over 10 years ago
dago - Virgin ADSl is very different to Virgin Cable.
Posted by cornzy9 over 10 years ago
John Hunt - you are a journalist? Then why glibbly accept this marketing hype from Virgin? Start kicking up a fuss about the cynical claims of Virgin eg. up to 20mbps when they usually provide 4 to 5mbps. That would be more interesting for us to read - and may make a difference.
Posted by GP03 over 10 years ago
@john, tb staff member, I would like to say why we Britons has to accept to pay £500 to £3000 for a decent modern internet service while ISPs over in Japan, S. Korea and Hong Kong are providing 10MBps VDSL 6 years ago and being charged only £8.53(128 HKD) per month?

Posted by GP03 over 10 years ago
This pricing example was taken from boardband service for my home in Hong Kong 6 years ago. And yes I was the guy who signed up and paied for it. The ISP is Hutchson Telecom in Hong Kong and yes they are still in business stronger then ever. And yes we were using copper from exchange to permisses. No traffic shaping, no warning letters, no two tier service, no fluffing about and the most important no BS.
Posted by CARPETBURN over 10 years ago
quote"If you actually want 50Mbps 24/7 expect to pay many thousands of pounds a year."
Firstly Virgin cant even provide 20Mb to its customers 24 hours a day, even if the customer offered them "thousands". What is the point is of introducing a 50Mb service? Nobody expects it to be uncontended but at 47 quid nobody expects the connection to drop in speed to a tenth of its full rate on a daily basis.
Posted by CARPETBURN over 10 years ago
Their website still claims their services have "no download limits" with no mention i could see of things like
as i said 50Mb yeah maybe for a few hours a day. Pretty pointless, hype the service claiming its 50Mb and unlimited when in reality its not.
Posted by imbsuk over 10 years ago
Only in this country could a provider get away with advertising a service as unlimited when it's clearly not.
Posted by herdwick over 10 years ago
Something for the 45% of the population that have cable to look forward too. The upstream is always a bit constrained on cable as it is designed as a downstream broadcast medium, bit like aDSL it doesn't leave much bandwidth for going the other way. Wireless or FTTH are the only high upstream technologies.
Posted by herdwick over 10 years ago
@GP03 - John's point is not about the speed but about the shared nature of the service. The connections in HK etc are not capable of all simultaneously running flat out at 10M 24/7 any more than here or elsewhere. John's numbers were for uncontended unshared clean capacity in a data centre.
Posted by CARPETBURN over 10 years ago
quote"John's numbers were for uncontended unshared clean capacity"
Indeed, but you cant even compare that analogy to Virgin because they will cap your speed regular as clockwork on a daily basis be it if the service is contended or not.
Posted by Fireblade40 over 10 years ago
Hi All

My experience is the same as dago. They do not rent enough wholesale capacity on ADSL to take their number of customers and throttle everyone to about 400KBS most of the time with the 7000KBS only for vampires at nightime.Virgin should concentrate on giving cable users the 20MB and ADSL users the 8MB they should get most of the time, not this headline grabbing crap. I dont necessarily expect to get 8MB all the time for my paltry 15 quid a month, but nor do I expect .4MB. If virgin would try and improve things a bit and I could get say 1.5MB most of the time I would be happy.
Posted by Dawn_Falcon over 10 years ago
john - You're comparing leaded lines again arn't you. Well, news I'm afraid but they're not asymetric. It's comparing a WW2 HE grenade to a modern theromaric 40mm. Start using fair comparisons in price, like bonded business 1:1 ADSL lines and it might be worth doing the price comparison.

Yes, there's a large difference but it's not on the same scale as your suggestion - and further, scaling up from my present rates, I'd get under 4MBit speeds from a "50MBit" product. And it's on the same platform, so identical 600ms+ pings.
Posted by Dawn_Falcon over 10 years ago
Strangely enough, trying to deliver that level of underperformance to a busines tends to end up with the ISP losing work. The "suck it up" attitude isn't helpful - ISP's need to stop overselling and going for headline speeds their network cannot support.
Posted by Fireblade40 over 10 years ago
Hi All

I agree with Dawn. I cant think of many other products where consumers would accept this type of mis-selling. If you bought a car that could do 120mph you would be happy to drive at the appropriate speed limit for each road, 70mph, 30mph etc. But after being sold the car to be told actually it has a restrictor in it and an only go 30mph everywhere would not wash. I just hope that when the public in general figures out this con the ISP,s will stop using it and give us some honesty.
Posted by ROB02476 over 9 years ago
What they say you can get and what you actually get are two different things.When when you have any queries/slow connections you speak to customer(shoddy)service,after many mins hang on the phone,which you are paying for.You then have to try to understand the poor english speaking,script reading fools who think we are at fault.Downsized to 4Mb as 20Mb not consistant I will BE looking elsewhere.
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