Virgin Media O2 is expanding its gigabit broadband services by introducing XGS-PON (10 Gbps) technology. After successful trials on its live full-fibre network, the company says it is now prepared to offer services using the latest fibre technology, XGS-PON, to a larger customer base.
Empowering Customers with XGS-PON Technology
In a blog post, Virgin Media O2 stated that the introduction of XGS-PON will not affect the broadband experience of their existing customers. Customers will continue to enjoy broadband speeds that are five times faster than the UK average, along with a range of TV bundles and phone services.
However, residents in areas where Virgin Media O2's network has recently expanded or will expand soon will gain access to these services for the first time, powered by the new XGS-PON technology.
Partnership with nexfibre
Virgin Media O2 has partnered with nexfibre, a provider of full-fibre networks, to leverage XGS-PON technology for its broadband services initially. Nexfibre plans to expand its network to cover 5 million homes by 2026, with the possibility of extending to a total of 7 million homes.
With Virgin Media O2 acting as both a build supplier and wholesale customer of the network, this venture represents a significant 4.5 billion Euros investment by nexfibre, which Liberty Global, Telefonica, and InfraVia Capital Partners jointly own.
When combined with Virgin Media O2's fibre upgrade plans, expected to be completed by 2028, the partnership will extend Virgin Media O2's fibre footprint to cover 80 percent of the UK.
Connecting Communities with Gigabit Broadband
According to the statement, residents across the UK can now sign up for Virgin Media O2's gigabit broadband services as the fibre build is already in progress. This milestone marks an important moment for the nexfibre team, as customers can start connecting to its network while the build continues to ramp up.
While XGS-PON technology will power the home broadband connections of these customers, the products and services offered will remain familiar.
Virgin Media O2 said its network currently offers ultrafast speeds of up to 1.1 Gbps and more. However, due to a 10 percent increase in data usage on the network in the past year, there is a growing need for higher bandwidth. By adopting XGS-PON technology and fibre connections, Virgin Media O2 will provide customers with even greater bandwidth and symmetrical upload and download speeds of up to 10 Gbps.
This will not only address current demands but also facilitate future technologies and applications such as the metaverse, generative AI, mixed reality, and immersive gaming.
Sustainability and Positive Impact
Virgin Media O2 has stated that the advantages of expanding their network reach extend beyond consumers and businesses. XGS-PON's use of passive optical network technology ensures lower energy consumption, aligning with Virgin Media O2's commitment to achieving net-zero emissions.