This multi part blog will be covering my journey getting Virgin Media’s Gig1 XGSPON powered full fibre broadband at my home.

In this first part I will cover the sales and ordering process. 

If your intrested in getting Virgin Media you can get £50 cashback on any package here

What is Virgin Media XGSPON?

When most people think of Virgin Media they see a cable tv connection with a cable modem and all the issues that are commonly known with that technology.

In fact Virgin Media now deliver their broadband using three different methods you can read more about these on our recent blog. 

In my area of Shrewsbury we have had the latest Nexfibre build which means Virgin Media will be using Nexfibre’s XGSPON network.

Essentially XGSPON is a 10Gbps capable full fibre technology and is used by a lot of alt-nets  therefore you have none of the issues inherent with VM’s legacy cable based network.

In these new Nexfibre XGSPON areas Virgin Media offer the latest speeds upto 2Gbps and also crucially for me symmetric speeds with an add on.

A Virgin Media XGS-PON CBT
A Nexfibre/VirginMedia XGSPON CBT.

A knock at the door

Since Virgin Media new XGSPON network powered by nexfibre went live in my street I have been curious about what it is like and how it would compare to my XGSPON based Full Fibre Ltd line where ive been testing 5Gbps broadband .

I still had some concerns about the service as my requirements include:

  • Symmetric Speeds (tick as VM now offer this as an add on)
  • Good latency (as its XGSPON FTTP should be fine)
  • Use my own router (This may be an issue as the included hub 5x has had issues with modem mode)
  • Static Public IPv4 address (From what i can read online this is not usually possible on residential packages.)
  • Install the fibre into my garage 
  • If moving home where VM is not live will Early Termination Charges apply.

Price wise via BlueLightCard the Gig1 service was showing up as £39 add on the upload speed boost for £6 makes it £45 not a bad price for Virgin Media.

While I have been deliberating the feasibility of getting Virgin Media this week I had a knock on my door.

When I answered the door it was Chloe from Virgin Media who was pleasantly surprised at how much I knew about their new network build.

I raised my above concerns I had with VM’s offering and one by one she addressed these concerns:

  • Chloe advised the issues with Modem Mode on the Hub 5X have now been resolved this was brought up that morning in their meeting.
  • Regarding the Static IP Chole advised that these are usually only offered on buisness packages however it is possible to request one if taking the Upload speed add on which I was doing anyway.
  • When I bought up about getting the service installed in my garage she said this should not be an issue as they can follow the same route as the existing fibre cable.
  • Lastly she confirmed with a home move it is possible to leave penalty free if VM is not available at the new address providing I gave evidence of the move.

These elevated all the concerns I had about the broadband service we then came onto price.

I mentioned the price of £45 I can get via Blue Light Card and to my surprise Chloe said she can do it for £43 per month.

I then placed my order with Chloe.

Chloe advised the price will show up as £47 initially and when she is back on Monday 10th she would sort the price and Static IP out.

The next day I got a flurry of emails and texts usually welcome and setting up account etc.

I also got one asking for more info about my property for the pre install.

It took me to an automated chat bot which asked a few questions like how far you are from the street to front door and what type of ground is in between.

This is for them to be able to determine what tools they need to do the pre install job.

However as my area is using Openreach ducts I’m hoping they can just use the existing underground duct like Full Fibre did.

I did call the number at the end of the chat bot to check this and double check a couple of things.

I got right though to a friendly support rep who told me the pre install team would tell me if they need to dig and agree a route etc with me.

I then asked about the modem mode again with the hub 5X but he said as that is a new part of the network he does not have access and has not been given the training.

As it was only less than 24 hours from placing the order the system had not fully caught up so he was unable to confirm what I was getting to pass me though to the relevant team he advised to call back in a couple of days.

I’m now awaiting the pre install which I will cover in part 2….