Virgin sets out 250 Mbps roadmap

Virgin Media has said it is ready to offer broadband speeds in excess of 100 Mbps should market conditions dictate. Speaking at the launch of its new 50 Mbps service, Virgin Media CEO Neil Berkett told Broadband TV News that there were no constraints on capacity in the offer of such a service.

“This next generation isn’t just an evolution, but something that will transform everything we do,” said Berkett. “We will continue the road to 100, 150 and even 250 Mbps.” It is anticipated that 40% of Virgin Media’s homes would be able to receive the 50 Mbps service by the end of the year with the balance coming on stream by mid-2009.

Customers will pay up to £51 per month for the service plus a £50 installation cost. A free DOCSIS 3 modem, manufactured by Ambit, and a Netgear router are being supplied and customers will receive an engineer visit for what Virgin is marketing as a premium product.

Berkett also indicated Virgin would be willing to participate in Project Canvas, the BBC proposals to encourage open IPTV standards, saying that the cablenet saw the light in the development. “We would have to look at how we could do that not just on the free-to-air channels, but also bring our pay-TV content.”