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By: MarkJ - 29 September, 2010 (12:14 PM)
virgin media uk business broadbandThe business division of Virgin Media UK (aka - Virgin Media Business) has announced its intention to shake-up the broadband ISP market with a new 'Big Red Internet' service, which will offer download speeds of 'up to' either 100Mb (Megabits per second) or 1Gbps (Gigabits per second)!

Both of Virgin Media's new packages claim they can "[give] companies all the bandwidth they need, without restrictions or extra charges" (i.e. "unlimited", without actually saying the word itself).

The MD of Virgin Media Business, Mark Heraghty, said:

"In 2010 telecom providers shouldn’t be acting as gatekeepers to what British businesses need in order to innovate and grow – bandwidth. Whereas other providers often constrain the bandwidth made available to businesses, Virgin Media Business can take advantage of the vast capacity on its national fibre optic network. So by removing bandwidth restrictions on business internet, we’re liberating British organisations from one of the single biggest factors holding them back today.

In February 2010 we announced our intention to shake things up in the business telecoms market by bringing the Virgin philosophy to the sector. Big Red Internet is our first game changing proposition as a Virgin brand. By challenging the status quo we’re breaking down the barriers associated with business internet, we’re helping organisations to think about what they can do, not what they can’t."

Virgin claims that its "independent study" of 1,000 IT professionals revealed that no less than 69% of respondents compared restrictions on business internet bandwidth to "shackles" on their companies. It also claimed 45% of problems are caused by restricted internet connections.

Customers will also get all the usual benefits from a fully managed service option with Cisco router(s) to a 24/7 UK based Business support team and unmatched transatlantic and European connectivity with strong Service Level Agreements (SLA).

So how much will it cost? Virgin claims that it's un-contended 100Mbps product is aimed at "businesses with smaller growth requirements", whilst the 1Gbps option is targeting "mid-sized organisations". However the small business bracket, which tends to prefer spending no more than a few hundred pounds per month on internet access, might balk at prices that start at £12k (annum).

By contrast the 1Gbps service only costs £22k, which isn't actually too bad for larger organisations. Residential users need not apply, you can all just wait for the contended home 100Mb Cable Modem broadband service instead, which should follow before Christmas.
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