More than a million homes in the West Midlands will gain access to gigabit broadband from March after Virgin Media announced it would be launching the service there.
Gigabit-capable broadband offers download speeds of at least 1Gbps, a massive increase on the current UK average of 54Mbps. The rollout of universal gigabit broadband is expected to boost the UK economy by billions of pounds.
After the latest announcement from Virgin Media, over a million households in Birmingham, Coventry and the surrounding areas will have access to gigabit-capable broadband from March.
However, Virgin Media’s broadband deals that will allow access to the highest speeds will start at £62 a month. Customers in Manchester, Southampton and Reading already have access to Virgin Media’s ultrafast connection if they can pay the price.
“Virgin Media is delivering on its promises, putting gits money where its mouth is and bringing next-generation broadband to its entire network,” said Jeff Dodds, chief operating officer at Virgin Media.
“Switching on gigabit speeds for more than a million homes in the West Midlands, the UK’s largest gigabit rollout to date, will be a leap forward for the region and a big step for the Government’s gigabit broadband ambition.
“From gaming to streaming, Gig1’s hyperfast speeds will mean that households can do everything they want to do online, at the same time and without delay, with millions of more homes set to benefit this year as we bring this next-generation connectivity to more cities around the UK.”
The Digital Secretary Oliver Dowden said: “Today’s announcement means we’re a million homes closer to delivering our plans to deliver gigabit broadband to everyone in the UK.
“We’re working closely with companies like Virgin Media and investing £5 billion to ensure the hardest to reach areas aren’t left behind – so that every part of the country can enjoy the benefits of a world class internet connection.”
Andy Street, the Mayor of the West Midlands, said: “Connectivity like this has the potential to make life easier for people here in the West Midlands and is sure to help our businesses and economy grow.
“I’ve spoken frequently on the need for good, reliable connectivity in the region and Virgin Media’s investment here in network expansion is an important step towards making the West Midlands one of the best connected places in the country.”
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