When you’re looking for the best broadband deal, you tend to get bombarded with terminology. Sometimes providers use different terms for the same thing. For example, some ISPs display their speeds as ‘Mb’ and others use ‘Mbps’, which both represent the measurement of megabits per second.
But there are times when you really do have to pay attention to the words, because not all broadband is created equal. So in case you’re ever curious as to what exactly you’re getting, we have produced this handy guide to the differences between superfast, ultrafast and hyperfast broadband connections.
Do you need ultrafast broadband?
The answer depends on how you are going to use your broadband connection. Use the handy checklist below to consider factors that will impact the performance of your internet connection, before you choose which ultrafast broadband package is best for you.
Factors to consider when selecting the broadband speed you will need
- How many users do you have?
- How many devices will be connected simultaneously?
- Games consoles
- Internet of things
- Cameras for streaming
- What will each device be used for on the internet?
As an example, if you are e-gaming and using a service like Twitch to stream live gaming, you will need an ultra speed broadband package. You will need to be able to maintain a stable broadband speed whilst other users are using the internet.
Can I get ultrafast broadband?
We are rolling out our fibre speed wireless network. If you live in the North West chances are we are already building our network to reach you!
The broadband speed you can get at home depends on the network infrastructure available to your house. This is specific to your postcode and house number.
We are building our ultrafast fibre speed broadband network chances are you will be able to get faster speeds in the near future!
What Ofcom says about superfast and ultrafast internet
The law of averages says that if you’re reading this at home or in the office, it probably has access to superfast internet, which Ofcom defines as anything between 30 Mbps and 299 Mbps.
Anything over 300 Mbps is ultrafast broadband
The same Ofcom standards put anything over 300 Mbps into the realm of ultrafast, but the general consensus is that these categories are too broad to really prove useful.
It doesn’t make a huge amount of sense to consider someone with 30 Mbps and another person with 250 Mbps as receiving the same level of internet speed, which is why the industry has now added a few more categories.
Superfast vs ultrafast internet
Internet Service Providers generally now categorise superfast broadband as up to around 76 Mbps, as this is the fastest realistic speed that can be delivered by the existing copper cables that connect your premises to the internet exchange.
Anything more than that requires some additional infrastructure, whether steel coaxial cable, fibre optic or (our personal favourite)fixed wireless broadband delivered to a small receiver on the roof.
Both Virgin’s steel coaxial cables and 6G Internet’s fixed wireless broadband can deliver ultrafast broadband speeds starting at 100 Mbps. Ultrafast broadband is now considered to cover anything up to 500 Mbps.
Hyperfast broadband vs gigabit broadband
This is the point at which speeds move into hyperfast, ranging from 500 – 1,000 Mbps. Virgin cannot achieve these speeds as of yet, while 6G Internet’s network in Blackburn is expected to hit 1,000 Mbps within the next 12 months.
Building towards Gigabit Broadband speeds
Otherwise known as gigabit internet, speeds of 1,000 Mbps upwards can be achieved by digging up your road to connect fibre optic cables to your premises, or by connecting 6G Internet’s receiver to your roof. By 2025, our Blackburn network will be capable of delivering 6,000 Mbps, or 6 Gbps.
We are continuing to expand across the UK and aim to serve around 4 million households within the next three years.
If you want to know when we arrive in your area, check your postcode today.