Was there a catastrophic UK wide failure of Virgin Media on Wednesday?
The Internet is a wonderful place but as we see all too often on our forums, it is easy for people to assume that because of a local issue that this is affecting them and their neighbours that it must be affecting millions of others too. Social media is great for checking whether you were specially selected for a poor evening of TV streaming or gaming and invariably if you look at any of the broadband providers with over 1 million customers you will see problems with Wi-Fi, broadband being slow or other issues so is not always the best judge of a much wider issue. Therefore calling out providers for major outages is not an easy game and given some are suggesting that there was a failure across virtually all of the Virgin Media network on the 18th we thought we would share some of our speed test data on how they've performed in the last few weeks.
As you can see from the above plot for the last four weeks speeds did not massively drop on Wednesday 18th and the trends across time are actually pretty consistent. Of course if there was a total loss of service it is possible that the few Virgin Media customers left online could still get their usual speeds and while we have not shared that graph there was no sign of a noticeable proportion of customers dropping off the net with the test volume for the 18th being within 1 standard deviation of the average.
Of course what our data will not show is individual problems affecting just a handful of the many thousands of fibre nodes that Virgin Media has, so for those who have been having connection problems your problem is still real, but until we start to see a measurable dip in speeds we won't be screaming UK wide or regional outage.