Broadband News

Virgin Media turns on Gig1 in Manchester

Virgin Media is saying another 500,000 premises in the Manchester and surrounding areas can now choose the Gig1 option (1104 Mbps down and 52 Mbps up), this is in addition to the 100,000 premises in Southampton where the service originally launched.

At £62/m the service is not a budget service but for existing Virgin Media customers in the area upgrading is easy as they just need to receive the new Hub 4 that supports DOCSIS 3.1 and they can get going. So this is a lot simpler than ordering most full fibre services where the new fibre cable needs to be installed for the first time.

We have done a very quick tour of the Manchester area and can see addresses in Bury, Bolton, Crumpsall, Moorside, Stockport and Wythenshawe that can order Gig1, but some other areas such as Ashton Under Lyme, Droylesden, Failsworth and Oldham have premises that are still limited to the M500 service. 

At some point in the future we are going to start tracking Gigabit broadband availability, but with this latest chunk combined with the full fibre services the UK is into the double digits area of over 10%. The Gig1 service is already overlapping with some full fibre services, so while the DOCSIS 3.1 switch-on is going to produce some large jumps in figures it may not always be as big a jump as some expect.


It doesn't matter how many times i've read it....that upload speed still hurts my eyes. Ooof.

  • ian27uk
  • about 1 month ago

What's the upstream on this?

  • andrum992
  • about 1 month ago

52Mbps upstream?? I guess they're not aiming at business customers then.

  • andrum992
  • about 1 month ago

I think as has consistently been the case since the VDSL/FTTC products became available, no operator wishes to undermine the market for their own leased-line products so it's disappointing but not surprising.

Even though the products are vastly different under the bonnet (SLAs and committed rates), it still becomes harder to justify a 20/20, 50/50 or 100/100 product against a seemingly cheaper product unless the upstream rate ratios are held artificially low (as in not strictly required by the underlying technology).

  • prlzx
  • about 1 month ago

For reference when procuring symmetric services on behalf of clients a representative ratio of real-world usage is anything between 5down/1up and 3down/1up during the most active periods.

Whereas at quiet times, basic consumption tends to dominate (as you would expect due to the ubiquity of streaming media).

So while these 10/1 and 20/1 products are fine as a second line or as part of a load balancing scenario, they are less attractive as the primary circuit.

  • prlzx
  • about 1 month ago

DOCSIS 3.1 builds on the legacy of previous DOCSIS systems, which use the lower part of the spectrum (typically sub-108 MHz, but can be up to 204 MHz) for upstream and the upper part of the band for downstream (with D3.1 this is up to 1218 MHz).

There is ongoing work on Extended Spectrum DOCSIS (ESD) which would push the upper frequency to 1794 MHz, allowing additional flexibility in DS/US allocations, whilst pushing DS towards 10 Gbps. In parallel with this, there is work on full-duplex (FDx) where US and DS share spectrum (requires complex echo cancellation).

  • Scampmeister
  • 29 days ago

One really minor point: 3.1 must support downstream between 258 MHz and 1218 MHz and may support 108 MHz at the low end and 1794 MHz at the high end. Where the downstream band starts at 108 MHz the upstream band ends at 85 MHz. There's a fairly hefty guard band between the two.

So it's already in the standards, albeit as an option, not mandatory.

  • CarlThomas
  • 28 days ago

Just gone live on VM Gigabit in North Manchester, M40 3 postcode. Signed up on Wed, Hub 4 delivered today and all working.

Getting 955 on ethernet and around 460Mbit/s WiFi on my Huawei Mate 20 Pro phone. If I switch to modem mode and use a Netgear Nighthawk X4S, I can reach 720Mbit/s WiFi on my phone. 1/2

  • badnbusy
  • 27 days ago

2/2 Modem stats for DOCSIS 3.1:

  • badnbusy
  • 27 days ago

I got mine today, similar stats to badnbusy - samknows checker direct from router is 1126Mbps 52.2Mbps (samknows)

950~ speed tests - wifi is approx 500-600Mpbs from the VM router AC only mode - unifi APs LR/Lite bottlenecking around 400Mpbs

Got my eyes on Orbi WiFi 6 System AX6000 (RBK852)

  • kooshini
  • 26 days ago

Post a comment

Login Register