Virgin Media Pilots 8-Gig Symmetrical Speeds
LONDON -- Virgin Media is trialling the UK’s fastest home broadband after successfully testing a connection offering speeds of more than 8Gbps to homes in Cambridgeshire. The hyperfast connection uses Virgin Media’s existing fibre network to provide download speeds more than 200 times faster the UK average. Triallists are benefiting from symmetrical connectivity, meaning the connection supports simultaneous upload and download speeds of more than 8Gbps.
The trial, made possible through continued network investment and collaboration with Liberty Global, is delivered using an existing fibre-to-the-premises (FTTP) connection meaning that no dedicated line is required. The six month trial will mean around 50 homes in Papworth, Cambridgeshire, can benefit from the UK’s fastest home broadband speeds.
In this trial data is transferred along fibre optic cables using EPON (Ethernet Passive Optical Network) technology - a global point-to-point network standard. EPON is typically used to deliver up to 1Gbps speeds to UK homes, but Virgin Media has been working with technology partner, ARRIS, to trial new equipment and software to increase the speeds that its residential fibre network is capable of delivering.
Papworth has long been a testbed of innovation for Virgin Media. The Cambridgeshire village is where Virgin Media first tested 1Gbps full fibre to the premises connectivity in 2014, and was also the original test site for the narrow trenching methodology which Virgin Media has used to minimise disruption and speed up deployment when laying new network cables. Virgin Media, through backing from its parent company Liberty Global, is currently investing billions of pounds to expand its network to millions more homes and businesses as part of its Project Lightning expansion programme.