Tag Archives for Virgin Media

When the pipes run cold

LONDON - FEBRUARY 08: Richard Branson shows Di...Image by Getty Images via DaylifeFor the last week and more, British Gas has kindly let me survive at home without central heating.  It was fun at first to combat the freezing weather in one warmish room and then, just like in the old days, go upstairs, dress for bed (with hat).  It is difficult being the warmest thing in a room.  Luckily I was saved by Gavin, a charmer from British Gas, who replace the heat exchanger.  The old one, really only a few months old, had been clogged up when they flushed out the pipes unwittingly using he heat exchange as the filter!  It made me wonder about the carbon savings of installing very energy efficient systems but which are not robust and need to be replaced after the slightest glitch.  This fancy boiler will not last twenty years and will be carbon poor.

With a warm home I can now enjoy my 20mb broadband connection with Virgin Media and look forward to the soon to be announced upgrade to 50mb.  Broadband is as essential to my life as central heating.  No doubt people in the sixties would have asked if they needed to spend the money and were happy keeping one room hot with a coal fire.

Currently, broadband is seen as a luxury and broadband market growth has slowed to 0.5% now from 37% in the last five years leading to a society split between the haves and the have nots.

The Cambridge Cluster needs to develop a “must have” reason for broadband so that people see it as an essential and the prices must keep coming down.  So what will be the “TV” moment when everyone realises that they could not live without broadband and the pipes run hot?  If not, we are going to have many youngsters who are not part of “The Cloud” generation and who will find it difficult to get jobs.

We have the business plan resource and now we need the idea!

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The bearded wonder speeds down the line!

Image representing Virgin Media as depicted in...Image via CrunchBaseThe bearded wonder, also known as Sir Richard Branson, has written a new book called Business Stripped Bare and if you go to the page you might win a Sony Ebook Reader or a signed copy of the book.  I have already received a copy of the book as a birthday present.  Sir Richard has found a great ghost reader and I am making my way through the thrilling story.  A bit too much I, I and I but what else did I expect.

All the chat about the Virgin brand has worked for me as I am back on cable having had a wonderful Virgin Media experience; so different from when I was trying to get rid of NTL.  It is difficul to appreciate that it is the same network with a very different business plan.

The only small niggle was that when the router and wireless were installed, my friend realised that the wireless speed was very slow.  After the third call to the help line we really did get some help and were told to move the wireless router as far away as possible from the PC.  We did and the speed rocketed.  Also the Netgear router supplied is so easy to long on to.  I did not shed a tear as I put the Orange Live Box in the return bag – it was virtually impossible to hook onto the wireless and the VOIP never worked even though I phoned the Orange help centre for two hours.  I never was given the promised priority!

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Broadband flows faster than water

viewImage by Yersinia via Flickr BT’s director for Scotland, Brendan Dick, said ……… that more homes in Britain now had access to broadband than to running water.

“The UK has been at the forefront of the broadband revolution,” he said. “It’s been an amazing journey from less than 150,000 broadband connections in 2002 to around 13 million now.”

It is an amazing social change and probably as fast a change as when mobile phones were first introduced. But I am not sure about access; presumably more homes are connected to running water than have broadband.

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