Re: I'm not surprised
> I use VM too, but I don’t recognise your description of their kit, generally it’s solid.
For me, the router has been ok; it's needed rebooting two or three times in the last year, which is fairly acceptable.
The TV box is a bit more shonky though; the first one had to be replaced a week after installation, due (I think) to a dodgy HDD. The second one seems ok, but makes a lot of physical noise which makes me suspect the HDD is potentially as fragile as the first.
Though TBH, I keep it switched off most of the time anyway; once the novelty of watching the 90s dance channel wore off, there wasn't really much to keep me interested.
> However, I do resent the fact that they have an entry level service (tests at 110/10 mbps) which costs for so much speed I don’t need or use. 20mbps would be more than enough for my requirements, and should be priced according
The underlying infrastructure costs are the same, and more pricing tiers = more billing complexity and management costs. So I'm not too surprised that they've elected to keep things simple.
> Brag about gigabit fibre, what would I do with that? It’s like supplying me with 500 apples per day when I only eat one or two.
And therein lies the issue for me: how many people actually need gigabit fibre?
I mean, with video streaming having become the standard, the era of people downloading All The Things via bittorrent have mostly come to an end.
And with a 1080p stream generally taking around 5mbps, even a family with 2.2 kids will generally find it difficult to saturate the standard 100Mbps Virgin offering; even if everyone decides to watch a 4K video stream at 20mbps, there should still be just enough bandwidth left for the family dog to have a video chat with the neighbour's cat.
I'm guessing that there are cases where higher bandwidths are needed, especially for businesses and/or where upload speeds are important (i.e. TikTok/Twitch/etc, for all those wannabe influencers and the like).
But for the most part, this is feeling like the "media wars", where we went from VHS and Betamax (ADSL/ISDN) to DVD (fibre) and then to blu-ray (gigabit fibre).
And in much the same way as the jump from analog 288i to digital 720p was welcomed by consumers, the jump to digital 1080p was mostly met with indifference, as 720p was generally Good Enough for most use cases.
In fact, to stretch this already strained analogy even further, the arrival of streaming - even though it's generally lower quality - put paid to blu-ray's hopes of media dominance, since it turned out that once again, Good Enough + Convenience was preferable to Better Quality.
And in much the same way, the fact that people can now stream video to their phones via 4G has somewhat further reduced the need for high-speed broadband. Hell, given that 4G streaming is offering that magic Good Enough + Convenience balance, it's arguably making it hard to justify the push to 5G...