Broadband News

Virgin Media Gig1 service now available in Liverpool and Edinburgh - map update

Virgin Media has announced earlier on 2nd July 2020 that it has switched on its Gig1 (1108 Mbps downloads and 52 Mbps upload) in Liverpool and Edinburgh.

Whether people are working from home, learning or gaming online, video calling friends and family or binging on a box set in 4K, with Gig1’s hyperfast speeds, more than 17 times faster than UK’s average, busy households can do everything they want online, at the same time, without delay.

Through continued investment, we’ll be bringing this next-generation connectivity to many more cities this year as we rollout gigabit broadband across our entire network at a speed and scale unmatched by anyone else. Whatever the future holds, we’re connecting our customers to what’s next.

Jeff Dodds, Chief Operating Officer at Virgin Media

We have spent this morning so far chasing down the boundaries of the footprint in the two new areas and will share a map of the Gig1 footprint later today. Our checker has been updated with the areas found so far, but there are still a good number of postcodes left to check.

The effect of adding over 600,000 premises with Gigabit coverage to the overall local authority picture will be revealed on Saturday, as that gives us time to find all the missing bits. The overlaps with Openreach FTTP and the Virgin Media RFOG areas which already count as Gigabit due to being FTTP will be taken into account and we will do a short update on Saturday once the weekly local authority updates are published.

The download side of the Gig1 service utilises the DOCSIS 3.1 protocol but the upload currently is still over the DOCSIS 3.0 network hence why its relatively low at 52 Mbps. Beyond cloud backups which once you've done the initial backup of a PC should be fairly small, gamers who side cast video onto twitch in search of fame and fortune generally can get manage with upload speeds in the 5 to 10 Mbps. More upload though is always handy as it will reduce the impact of a random upload that saturates a connection and causes the latency to jump for a few seconds.

Update 1pm: We can share two images for Edinburgh and Liverpool showing where our initial sweep has found the Virgin Media Gig1 service. The centre of both areas is missing because we have not checked them, the initial check was an attempt to determine the geographic extent and now we can concentrate on the checking and filling in the gaps.

Virgin Media Gig1 availability in Edinburgh
Initial map of Virgin Media Gigabit service availability in Edinburgh, green dots are postcodes with DOCSIS 3.0 availability and blue dots are DOCSIS 3.1 i.e. Gig1 service
Virgin Media Gig1 availability in Liverpool
Initial map of Virgin Media Gigabit service availability in Liverpool, green dots are postcodes with DOCSIS 3.0 availability and blue dots are DOCSIS 3.1 i.e. Gig1 service

Hopefully in between all the other FTTP roll-outs we are tracking we will have got these two areas fully checked by Saturday morning.

Update Friday 3rd July 2020: The central areas of Liverpool and Edinburgh have now been checked for Gig1 and added to our checker system. The overall UK Gigabit coverage has risen to 21.95% and the Virgin Media DOCSIS 3.1 footprint is some 2,661,842 premises. The public version of the local authority stats will update at the weekend, but for now Liverpool District is has 80.59% Gigabit coverage (13th highest in UK) and City of Edinburgh is 89.36% (5th highest in UK).

Comments

I wish we had something different here than BT hybrid fibre system, but then again it depends on the cost, not bothered about high speed as long as it works for what I need it for.

  • zyborg47
  • about 1 month ago

Is the upgrades of physical equipment? or just software on their side? (and obviously the capacity)

  • BuckleZ
  • about 1 month ago

The upgrades needed have been underway for a long time, so for those who can get the service its just order and get the latest router and off you go.

  • andrew
  • thinkbroadband staff
  • about 1 month ago

I mean in terms of street cabs etc

  • BuckleZ
  • about 1 month ago

Unless I'm missing something, it would be good to have a layer on the map that shows postcodes that can receive ultrafast connections regardless of provider to get an understanding of the picture across the UK.

Whether that's set at the ultrafast threshold or the gigabit threshold or even having both options, not sure how difficult that would be to implement.

Just thinking if you could tick one box and see all postcodes that can receive a service that meets that threshold would be interesting.

  • RTUK
  • about 1 month ago

As we move out of the BDUK era into the Gigabit era the map layers may change e.g. superfast replaced with a Gigabit layer.

Probably happen once the whole Virgin Media network is running on DOCSIS 3.1

  • andrew
  • thinkbroadband staff
  • about 1 month ago

Hi Andrew, think you’ve got a typo. It says in the article upload is over DOCSIS 3.1. However I think you mean DOCSIS 3.0. Cheers.

  • gary333
  • about 1 month ago

Fixed - not sure if it was me or auto correct and not spotting it subsequent to that

  • andrew
  • thinkbroadband staff
  • about 1 month ago

Opportunity missed on the face of it. DOCSIS3.1 provides a future roadmap to protect customers. But, DOCSIS3.0 for uploads is the opportunity missed. Transforming provision of fibre based broadband to synchronous from asynchronous has to be the direction to follow.

I’d be inter stead to read a thinkbroadband article on Virgin Media’s upgrade process, and why it chose not to upgrade the upload lanes to DOCSIS3.1 at the same time as the download lane.

  • loaderladdy
  • about 1 month ago

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