Over 9,000 O2 broadband customers have been fingered and could see their details handed over to a porn producer after his company went to court to ask for their details after claiming the customers had illegally downloaded the company’s films!
It is bound to be a nervous time for any of the accused 9,124 O2 Broadband customer who may have downloaded one of “Ben Dover”, real name Lindsay Honey, films.
The High Court in London ruled that O2 had to had over the customers details to Mr Honey’s company “Golden Eye International” despite O2 having fought so they wouldn’t have to do so.
Although Mr Justice Arnold from the High Court ruled that O2 had to hand over the customers details he did stop a draft letter that had been written demanding £700 from each of the accused illegal downloaders as it would be “capable of causing unnecessary distress, because it could be read as an implicit threat of publicity once proceedings have been commenced.”
It is actually a list of 9,124 IP address that Golden Eye International have which they claim are of users who have illegally downloaded their films. O2 will now need to work through this list to try and establish which account was logged in and when for each IP Address, however what it will not be able to do is be able to know who was actually using the internet at the time!
If all accused customers were forced to pay up then it would total around £6.3 million!
George Osborne the Chancellor announced in today’s 2012 Budget that he wants the UK to have “the fastest digital speeds in the world in our cities”.
10 of the UK’s largest cities are to benefit from a £100 million investment fund that was announced last autumn and it will see the cities of: Belfast, Birmingham, Bradford, Bristol, Cardiff, Edinburgh, Leeds, London, Manchester and Newcastle all benefit. The fund will help pay for ultrafast broadband and high speed wireless broadband and make these the UK’s “super-connected cities”.
There will also be a further pot of £50 million that will be used to help fund 10 other smaller cities in a similar way.
Mr Osborne also said that we should not be complacent about being able to say we have the best broadband in Europe when countries such as Korea and Singapore are even better.
TalkTalk are to start offering 80Mb fibre broadband from April this year they have announced.
From April, TalkTalk will be doubling the maximum broadband speed it offers via fibre optic broadband from 40Mb to up to 80Mb with upload speeds up to 20Mb.
The faster 80Mb broadband speeds will be available due to BT doubling the FTTC (Fibre To The Cabinet) broadband speeds on it’s network, BT announced that these new speeds would be available to their wholesale customers in April. BT themselves have not even announced the faster broadband speeds to their own customers yet so TalkTalk are getting in early with their promotion of the new deals!
Tristia Clarke, Commercial Director at Talktalk, said:
“Demand is continuing to increase for superfast broadband as more customers use their internet connections to watch live television, stream HD content, talk to their friends and family or play games that require real time responses.
We expect our new Superfast Fibre Optic Broadband to be very popular as it will allow the whole family to enjoy seamless connectivity and high upload and download speeds for unbeatable value.”
TalkTalk’s 40Mb fibre broadband is available for an additional £10 per month on the current Essentials or Plus package price while the new 80Mb broadband will be an additional £15 per month. There is also a £25 activation fee for an engineer visit to set up the service.
Ofcom have announced new lower prices that BT Openreach can charge to rival communications providers for access to their network.
The proposed new prices were suggested by Ofcom in February this year and have since been sent to the European Commission for approval as is now required. The European Commission made no changes to the price caps recommended by Ofcom which are now due to come into effect on 1st April 2012. The reason BT have their prices regulated by Ofcom is because of BT’s market power being so great in the UK.
The new prices imposed are as follows:
Fully Unbundled line (where a rival communications provider has installed their own equipment and take control of the BT line) previously cost £91.50 per year and this has been reduced to £87.41 per year.
Part unbundled line (where a rival provider only supplies the broadband) was £14.70 and has been reduced to £11.92 per year.
Wholesale line rental (where a rival communications provider can offer telephone services by renting the lines from BT Openreach) previously cost £103.68 per year has been reduced to£98.81 per year.
The new prices will come into effect on 1st April 2012.
However, despite Ofcom having had their new prices approved it is thought that BT could make an appeal against the price reductions with BT claiming that they need to make a decent return on their investment to be able to continue investing in their infrastructure in the future.
Orange have launched what they claim is the first broadband package that offers customers calls to mobile phones included.
The new package is the Orange “Broadband and Anytime Mobile Calls” which costs £20 per month plus £13.50 line rental, Orange Mobile customers receive £5 per month discount. For this users get unlimited broadband, unlimited UK anytime calls (1,000 minutes fair use policy) plus 1,000 minutes (March 2012 offer) of calls to UK mobiles. For the month of March the inclusive mobile calls has been doubled for 12 months for those who sign up before the end of March, anyone who signs up after March will receive 500 minutes per month.
Along with the included broadband and calls is a free “Bright Box” wireless router and McAfee Antivirus Plus 2012 with parental controls free for a year which is worth £49.99.
Another online exclusive for those who sign up online is that they will receive £60 of M&S vouchers too.
The broadband speed customers can expect is up to 20Mb for those who are on an Orange unbundled exchange or up to 8Mb for those not on Orange Broadband network areas.
The Director of Marketing & Proposition at Orange Broadband, Sylvain Thevenot, said:
“We all enjoy the comfort of using our home phone to chat, but sometime a fear of costs can prevent us from contacting friends and family when they’re out and about. So we’ve decided to offer Brits peace of mind and take home phone calling to the next level by creating the UK’s first home phone package that meets customers calling needs.”
This comes after Orange point to a YouGov survey that found that 29% of Brits won’t call a mobile from their home phone as they don’t know how much it will cost them and that 55% of Britons with a landline said that they would use their home phone more if inclusive minutes to mobile phones were included in their deal.
Some Sky broadband customers could be set for connection issues until the end of April according to Sky.
Since the end of February a small number of Sky Broadband customers have been hit with connection issues with their broadband. Customers on 34 exchanges across the country on Sky’s unbundled exchanges have been affected which will see them having congestion issues which cause slower connections and increased latency.
The list of the 34 affected exchanges has been posted on the Sky support forum along with the expected resolution of the problem for each exchange. The earliest target resolution is the 14th March for half of the exchanges with 7 exchanges on the list looking to be the end of April before they are fixed.
The Sky service status page said:
“We are aware of a number of customers who are experiencing intermittent service issues with their Sky Broadband service. We are currently working on identifying and fixing the small number of telephone exchanges affected and will post more details no later than Wednesday 29 th February on how we plan to resolve the current issues. We apologise for anyone experiencing connection problems and would encourage impacted customers to check back here on Wednesday for an update. Thank you.”
Virgin Media’s doubling of broadband speeds starts today across the UK to keep it as the fastest widely available broadband in the UK.
At the start of January we reported how Virgin Media were going to double the broadband speeds of its customers on it’s cable network for free and this work is starting today and is likely to take the next 18 months to cover the entire network. Over 4 million Virgin Media cable broadband customers are going to benefit from the free upgrade at no cost and with Virgin Media having a footprint of 13 million homes that are covered by their network there are plenty more who could make the most of Virgin Media’s superfast fibre broadband speeds.
Those customers who are currently on 10Mb broadband will be increased to 20Mb, those on 20Mb and 30Mb will be increased to 60Mb and those on 50Mb will be increased to 100Mb. The Virgin cable customers who are already on Virgins 100Mb headline package will see their speed increased to 120Mb.
Virgin Media executive of broadband, Jon James, said:
“Virgin Media has driven broadband development in the UK and we’re delighted to be boosting our customers’ broadband speeds once again. Following our Double Speeds programme, all of our customers will be ‘superfast’ as standard and ready to access a new breed of high bandwidth entertainment services. By continuing to give our customers faster speeds and greater value services, we’re committed to providing our customers the best broadband in the UK.”
Any Virgin Media customers who want to see when they are likely to receive their broadband speed increase can do so at www.virginmedia.com/doublespeed. During March and April there are 30 areas already selected to be the first areas for the free upgrade, these are:
- St Mellons
- Hemel Hempstead