BT super-charges fiber-optic broadband today, for the lucky few who can get it

Excuse our sour grapes, but the fortunate proportion of Britons with access to BT's fibre fiber-optic broadband will find everything much faster from today at no extra cost. Infinity 1 customers now have an upstream of (as always) "up to" 9.5Mbps, up from 1.9Mbps yesterday, but downstream remains fixed at 38Mbps. Meanwhile, those with Infinity 2 have seen their speeds doubled with 19Mbps up and 76Mbps down as the company continues its jockeying with Virgin Media to remain top dog in the speedy broadband stakes. Those of us who aren't in an area that's been earmarked for the fiber-optic rollout will have to make do with checking the property websites and wishing.

[Thanks, Craig]

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April 11, 2012 Broadband race hots up as BT Infinity gets even faster – and at no extra cost!

BT Infinity 2 downstream speeds roughly double to up to 76Mbps
BT Infinity 2 offers UK's fastest upstream speeds of up to 19Mbps 1
BT Infinity 1 upstream speeds to be up to five times faster than before

BT Retail has turned up the speed dial in the broadband battle by announcing a range of speed increases for its customers for no extra cost. Customers signing up to BT Infinity 2 from tomorrow (April 12) will benefit from downstream speeds that are roughly double those on offer today – up to 76Mbps rather than up to 38Mbps. The newly revamped service will also offer the UK's fastest upstream speeds of up to 19Mbps.

BT Retail is also set to give its BT Infinity 1 product a boost by increasing its upstream speed fivefold from up to 1.9Mbps to up to 9.5Mbps. With a downstream speed of up to 38Mbps, this service will compare very well with the 30Mbps service offered by Virgin Media given the upstream speeds will be considerably faster than those offered by the latter.

Delivery of the new increased speeds by BT Retail will help to achieve the government's stated ambition for the UK to have the best super-fast broadband network in Europe by 2015. The high upstream speeds will also be of great benefit to customers who wish to upload photos, video, graphics or other rich content.

From April 12 customers new to BT and existing BT customers switching to BT Infinity from other packages will automatically benefit from these higher speed packages. Current BT Infinity customers will be able to switch to the faster products by starting a new contract, at no extra cost.

John Petter, managing director, BT Consumer, said: "Super-fast broadband is helping people enjoy the internet far more than ever before. However, many providers have forgotten about the importance of fast upload speeds. BT believes that fast upstream speeds are vital given how people now use the internet and so we are distancing ourselves from the competition by providing the UK's fastest upload speed. "

BT Infinity is currently available to more than seven million premises across the UK. That figure will rise to ten million in 2012 and then to around two thirds of all UK premises by the end of 2014. BT Group is currently bidding for BDUK funds which could extend the availability of fibre broadband to more than 90 per cent of UK homes and businesses.