Virgin Media has just about completed the upgrade to its next-generation broadband network.
The 18-month project has tripled its network capacity, and will offer broadband speeds of up to 50Mbit/s to a potential 12 million UK homes.
"As the first company to bring broadband to the UK 10 years ago, the completion of our next-generation network marks another pioneering moment for internet access in the UK," said Jon James, executive director of broadband at Virgin Media.
"We are delighted with the performance and reliability of our 50Mbit/s service, and with the customer feedback. Now that the rollout is days from being complete, we are ready to take 50Mbit/s to the next stage of development and reinforce our leading position in the broadband market."
The company is to pilot a new scheme in certain areas around the North East and Midlands which will provide upload speeds of up to 10Mbit/s to help address issues created by the growing adoption of apps like online file backup and sharing, video conferencing, multiplayer gaming and home working.
Virgin Media is currently trialling the deployment of a 200Mbit/s service in Ashford, Kent.
The firm will also launch its Freedom netbook this week. The Virgin branded laptop features all the usual netbook specifications, and has apparently been optimised for use on the 50Mbit/s service. The laptop will be free on certain 24-month packages which include fixed-line and mobile broadband.
Virgin Media has also revealed that it will be dropping the price of its 50Mbit/s service from 1 September. New and existing customers will be charged £28 per month for the service when it is taken with a phone line, or £38 if taken as a standalone product.
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