2Gbps broadband goes live for sale, with faster upload speeds also available as an upgrade.
Virgin Media has announced its fastest broadband plan yet, Gig2, with 2Gbps download speeds, is now live for some residential customers to order.
Customers can also boost their upload speeds to symmetrical across all speed tiers by purchasing an optional add-on for £6 per month.
Availability is currently limited to customers on the nexfibre network however, with coverage approaching 1 million premises.
Gig2 from Virgin Media is their new fastest plan and has been made available for over 1 million customers on their network to order, following successful trials over recent years.
The new plan offers twice the download speed of their previous top-tier Gig1 package, which offers average downloads of 1130Mbps, and upload speeds of 104Mbps after being boosted in May 2023.
Customers taking Gig2 will get 200Mbps upload speeds, but they can also choose to pay an extra £6 per month for symmetrical 2Gbps uploads as well.
Gig2 will cost £84 per month, but availability is currently limited to customers on parts of Virgin Media's new full fibre network, operated by wholesale provider nexfibre.
Those who sign up to Gig2 will be provided with Virgin Media's latest Hub 5x router, which supports the new XGS-PON technology used by nexfibre to bring speeds of up to 10Gbps to homes.
Just as with Gig1, customers on Gig2 will also get the provider's whole home WiFi guarantee, WiFi Max - worth £8 per month, included for free too. This guarantee promises minimum speeds over wireless of 30Mbps in every room of a customer's home, and includes up to three mesh WiFi Pods to achieve this.
For the first time, Virgin Media is also offering customers the option to boost their uploads to symmetrical speeds.
Symmetrical uploads mean the upload speed is as fast as the headline download speed, while usually, customers connecting via Virgin Media or even Openreach full fibre only get asymmetrical and often much slower uploads.
The upgrade option will cost £6 per month and is being made available across all package tiers, from 50Mbps up to the new 2Gbps plan.
However, as with Gig2, availability is also limited to those connecting via full fibre where nexfibre has rolled out.
The drawback to these new services is, as mentioned, that availability for Gig2 and symmetrical upload speeds is limited to just 1 million of the over 16 million premises covered by Virgin Media's broadband services.
This is because to offer multi-gig speeds and symmetrical uploads Virgin Media need to use the latest XGS-PON technology, which so far, is only available in new locations where full fibre has been used to connect properties.
Some of the areas covered by nexfibre, a new wholesale network owned by the parent companies of Virgin Media and O2, include Belfast, Cardiff, London, Milton Keynes, Sheffield, Manchester, and Glasgow.
The new network aims to reach a total of 5 million premises by the end of 2026 however, and published their build plan for the next 12 months in November 2023.
The rollout aims to increase availability of Virgin Media broadband to 23 million by the end of 2026, with the existing network also upgraded to full fibre by the end of 2028.
Jeanie York, Chief Technology Officer at Virgin Media O2, said, "Gig2 will operate across nexfibre's XGS-PON, full fibre network which will support symmetrical download and upload speeds - a first for a major UK broadband provider as an optional add-on - and will enable users to send and receive data, files and much more at the blink of an eye. With our heritage in providing cutting-edge technology and hyperfast broadband speeds, which saw us complete the UK's first national gigabit rollout programme, we are looking forward to taking Gig2 to more areas in the near future."
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