Virgin Media O2 announced some good news for its new AND existing customers today: two of its broadband plans, the M100 and M200 plans, are getting a major speed boost at no extra cost.
With Virgin Media having millions of customers (across broadband, phone lines and TV), this means that a large number of households will be getting a free upgrade to their broadband speeds.
This is particularly important to those who rely on streaming services for their TV watching, especially if multiple people in your household stream 4K content.
Upload speeds on the affected plans are also getting a minor boost – although those remain pretty slow even now, when compared to the offered download speeds.
As before, new and existing customers can also get Virgin Media’s new Stream 4K TV box, which lets you stream Freeview channels along with all the major streaming services.
The Stream carries no monthly subscription costs – unless you sign up for any of the specific TV add-ons.
Virgin Media’s New Broadband Speeds
From today, Virgin Media is changing its M100 and M200 broadband packages.
M100, which will now be called M125, will benefit from a 22% uplift in average download speeds (from 108Mbps to 132Mbps). Upload speeds will increase from 10Mbps to 20Mbps.
M200, which is now M250, will see a 24% increase in average download speeds (from 213Mbps to 264Mbps) with upload speeds rising from 20Mbps to 25Mbps
According to Virgin Media, a typical 4K film (around 14GB) would take just 15 minutes to download under the new M125 plan, instead of 19 minutes on the old M100, and 7.3 minutes on the new M250, instead of 9 minutes.
According to Netflix’s broadband speed recommendations, when watching 4K / Ultra HD content you need a minimum speed of 15Mbps.
However, that’s a rather conservative recommendation – if you have other people in your house using broadband, to also watch 4K content, play demanding online games, or do video calls – those 15Mbps will be far from enough, and your 4K film will start buffering.
Therefore, any speed boost is always a blessing, especially when it comes at no extra cost – though if you live alone, or in a household that uses streaming minimally – then lower speeds may be enough for you.
How Can I Get Virgin Media’s New Speed Boost?
Existing Virgin Media O2 customers will get these speed boosts at no extra cost – even if they’re still under contract.
Eligible customers simply need to reboot their Hub by switching it off and on again, or via the Virgin Media Connect app.
New customers looking to upgrade their connectivity can sign up for the new M125 and M250 bundles for the same price as the previous lower tier speeds, starting from just £26/month for M125 and from £30/month for M250.
As is always the case with broadband plans, keep in mind that those are the “official” starting point prices – and those who haggle can often get even better deals.
Virgin Media and O2 customers with Volt (that’s customers who subscribe to both Virgin Media’s services and O2’s mobile plans) will also benefit from the uplift at no extra cost on top of their already boosted broadband speed as part of their Volt package.
Also note that Virgin Media’s other broadband tiers (M50, M350, M500 and Gig1) are not changing for now.
In addition, Virgin Media also offers a “Social Tariff” broadband plan, where those who need financial assistance can get cheaper broadband and TV plans.