15th November 2022: Virgin Media O2 has today announced it has connected more than 4,250 additional homes in Alsager, Cheshire East, to its ultrafast network, bringing the benefits of gigabit broadband to thousands more people for the first time as it upgrades the UK.
As part of its ‘Project Lightning’ network expansion programme, Virgin Media O2 is expanding its network to bring ultrafast broadband, TV and phone services to more residents and small businesses.
The homes in Alsager are now able to benefit from Virgin Media’s services, including Gig1 which offers top speeds of 1,130Mbps – 22 times faster* than local average – which is perfect for busy households working remotely, streaming TV shows and films, video calling friends and family and playing games online.
Rob Evans, Managing Director of Fixed Network Expansion at Virgin Media O2, said: “With the festive season fast approaching and winter nights drawing in, we’re proud to be giving the people of Cheshire East access to ultrafast connectivity at a time when it matters most. Residents in the area will now be able to experience speeds up to more than 22 times faster* than the local average when accessing online services such as streaming their favourite Christmas films and video-calling friends and family.”
Virgin Media O2 is leading Britain’s gigabit charge and became the only major broadband provider to have rolled out next-generation gigabit services to its entire network in 2021.
Alongside this, the company continues to act on its pledge to invest over £10bn to upgrade the UK and building on the success of its existing fibre network expansion activity, is exploring options to go further and faster by deploying fibre to millions of additional homes across the country.
In July 2021, the company announced it will upgrade its entire fixed network to full fibre to the premises (FTTP) technology with completion in 2028, capable of delivering symmetrical 10Gbps download and upload speeds and beyond.
In addition to its ultrafast broadband network, Virgin Media O2’s mobile network covers 99% of the nation’s population with 4G, with the business continuing to upgrade its 4G and 5G services to boost mobile connectivity around the country. It recently announced that it would be the only mobile network operator not to reintroduce roaming fees in Europe and committed to reaching 50% of the UK’s population with 5G coverage in 2023.
Councillor Nick Mannion, Chair of Cheshire East Council’s Economy and Growth Committee said: “We are delighted to hear Virgin Media O2 have continued to extend their gigabit broadband service to additional premises across Cheshire East, with more than 4,000 new connections now live in Alsager. Seeing organisations such as Virgin Media O2 expand their network and provide even more premises with a future proofed broadband service is crucial. This ensures our residents and businesses have access to fast, reliable internet services.
This also enables more households to work, learn and play more productively from home, whilst enabling multiple users to use online devices simultaneously. We will continue to support organisations delivering fibre-based solutions across Cheshire East to ensure as many premises as possible can connect to superfast and ultrafast broadband.”
Virgin Media O2 recently launched its first ever joint product, Volt, enabling customers to supercharge their services and reap extra rewards simply by being customers of both Virgin Media and O2. Alongside double mobile data, roaming in 75 countries and up to £150 off a connected device, new and existing customers who take a Virgin Media broadband service and an eligible O2 Pay Monthly plan will receive a broadband speed boost to the next tier available – meaning customers on a 500mbps Virgin Media package could be boosted to Gig1 at no extra charge.
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Notes to Editors
*The average (median) broadband speed in Cheshire East is 52.5Mbps. Source: Ofcom, Connected Nations Report 2021, published 16 December 2021.