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Clare Newsome's picture
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Want faster broadband? Use it or lose it...

Thought i'd share something a BT Broadband engineer just told me re the service's broadband speeds.

Essentially, they monitor what you're using and apportion bandwidth accordingly. So if you're a heavy broadband user, you should get decent speeds, while more casual users will be running at lower speeds.

So far so understandable, BUT.... if your usage patterns change - for example you go on holiday for a couple of weeks (so your broadband usage tails off) - the service will adapt.

That means heavy users are likely to come back from holiday to much slower broadband speeds, which will only ramp up to their usual level once the system recognises the higher usage rate and adjusts back to your established profile.

Secondly, it means if you're a BT Broadband customer suddenly ramping up your internet usage - such as adopting a streaming service like LoveFilm or Netflix - it could be worth pushing past any pain barrier of initially slow broadband speeds while the network learns your new heavier rates. You should then get higher speeds...

 

 

Group Marketing & PR Manager, Computers Unlimited.

Brands represented include Astell&Kern, Audioengine, B&O Play, Canton, Flexson for SONOS and SONOS

TWITTER: @ClareNewsome

ianr23gp's picture
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RE: Want faster broadband? Use it or lose it...

Interesting read, thanks for sharing. I'm assuming that this applies to all Internet Service Providers and not just BT?

Perhaps you could stream those sorts of services overnight for a copule of days (without actually watching...!). Might take away the initial pain.

chebby's picture
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RE: Want faster broadband? Use it or lose it...

This was happening 5 years ago before we moved from BT to Virgin Cable.

We used to have a fixed 2mbps broadband connection with BT that was superb (until early 2007). The speed never varied and it had bomb-proof reliability.

Then we had to change to ADSL and everything went bad. At 1.2 miles from the nearest digital POP we were lucky to get 1 mbps and it often went below this to 'dial-up' speeds.

Three visits from BT engineers only determined that we were "too far away".

The slower the speed, the less we could use it. And the less we could use it, the lower the speed went!

I think the technical term was called 'training'. (As in the circuit 'trained' itself to some optimum speed based on usage and error rate etc.)

After about 3 months of this nonsense we got cable from Virgin Media (then NTL) and never looked back.

 

Anonymous
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RE: Want faster broadband? Use it or lose it...

Clare, does this apply to their own BT Infinity product please?

After years of 3.1 Mbps my exchange has an RFS date for FTTC for 01.06.2012 and I was looking forward to faster speed!

Thanks Smile :)

DandyCobalt's picture
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RE: Want faster broadband? Use it or lose it...

In theory, we've got Virgin 50mb, but it often struggles to get over 25mb.

We're going to do a usage/speed spreadsheet over a week's usage and then take our case to them formally.

Andy Clough's picture
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RE: Want faster broadband? Use it or lose it...

Have noticed a slowdown in my Virgin 30Mb service recently, especially at peak times in the evening. Should obviously use it more Smile

Editor-in-Chief of What Hi-Fi? Sound and Vision and whathifi.com

Clare Newsome's picture
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RE: Want faster broadband? Use it or lose it...

Graham_Thomas wrote:

Clare, does this apply to their own BT Infinity product please?

After years of 3.1 Mbps my exchange has an RFS date for FTTC for 01.06.2012 and I was looking forward to faster speed!

Thanks Smile :)

He made no specific mention of Infinity, other than that obviously the potential speed you can get is far higher.

We're also due for Infinity in June, and i'm considering the upgrade.

Mind you, since the engineer came and upgraded our socketry, we've been enjoying far faster speeds already - up to 20MB from less than half that :bounce:

Could be worth a call-out if you haven't already done so. I found contacting @BTCare via Twitter of more use than the rubbish call centre support.

Group Marketing & PR Manager, Computers Unlimited.

Brands represented include Astell&Kern, Audioengine, B&O Play, Canton, Flexson for SONOS and SONOS

TWITTER: @ClareNewsome

bigboss's picture
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Joined: 25/03/2009 - 21:40
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RE: Want faster broadband? Use it or lose it...

Maybe heavy Internet use will ensure the cable is properly "burnt in" so the speeds pick up.  Wink

If you don't use it for a while, the cables go "cold" resulting in deterioration in performance. So you have to start the "burning in" process all over again!  :wall:

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RE: Want faster broadband? Use it or lose it...

Use it or lose it? I'd love if I could even get it installed!  

I could theoretically have very fast broadband as our building is Gigabit ready. A neighbour has the full-fat service but no-one from the Telecom company seems to want to to sell me that, so I'm stuck at 8 meg. Boo.

 

Anonymous
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RE: Want faster broadband? Use it or lose it...

Clare Newsome wrote:
He made no specific mention of Infinity, other than that obviously the potential speed you can get is far higher.

We're also due for Infinity in June, and i'm considering the upgrade.

Mind you, since the engineer came and upgraded our socketry, we've been enjoying far faster speeds already - up to 20MB from less than half that :bounce:

Could be worth a call-out if you haven't already done so. I found contacting @BTCare via Twitter of more use than the rubbish call centre support.

Thanks for the reply Clare. We too have the old type socket; however, we are a good way from the exchange - worth a try though.
amcluesent's picture
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RE: Want faster broadband? Use it or lose it...

Nah, the slows downs/speed ups are due to your interwebs traffic being identified as suspicious and routed via GCHQ and scanned for security purposes. If they reckon you're OK, then the traffic is rerouted back directly via the ISP and it speeds up. That's what a man in the pub at Cheltenham told me!

chebby's picture
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RE: Want faster broadband? Use it or lose it...

amcluesent wrote:
Nah, the slows downs/speed ups are due to your interwebs traffic being identified as suspicious and routed via GCHQ and scanned for security purposes. If they reckon you're OK, then the traffic is rerouted back directly via the ISP and it speeds up. That's what a man in the pub at Cheltenham told me!

Far more alarming that Cheltenham only has one pub it seems.

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RE: Want faster broadband? Use it or lose it...

chebby wrote:

Far more alarming that Cheltenham only has one pub it seems.

Must be one dry Town.

Sure there was more than that last time I was there.

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