Virgin Media transforms in-home connectivity with Intelligent WiFi Plus

Virgin Media Logo

Virgin Media has announced a new game-changing WiFi service that will give millions of customers the UK’s fastest widely available broadband speeds in more areas of their home.

Intelligent WiFi Plus from Virgin Media combines a suite of new, automatically deployed features on its Hub 3 and Hub 4 routers with brand new Intelligent WiFi Pods that help to extend WiFi reach and speeds throughout the home.

Together, this technology will transform in-home WiFi by combining faster speeds with more reliable connectivity, giving customers WiFi speeds up to three times faster in more locations in the home.

The new router features and WiFi Pods – powered by Plume – harness cutting-edge technology to create a unique WiFi ecosystem bespoke to each household. In-home WiFi coverage is extended through the creation of a cloud-controlled ‘mesh’ network which constantly adapts and evolves.

This ensures the best in-home coverage with connected devices seamlessly making use of the strongest possible signal, all of the time, regardless of where in the home they are being used.

The new WiFi Pods come exclusively with Intelligent WiFi Plus and can be simply plugged in and moved to any location in the home. However, all Virgin Media customers with Hub 3 or Hub 4 routers will still be able to benefit from the new Intelligent WiFi features, which have been rolled out at no extra cost.

New research from Virgin Media reveals that more than half of Brits have experienced poor in-home WiFi in at least one room of their home, with bedrooms said to be the trickiest place to get a reliable signal.

But with millions of people working remotely, people say they would prioritise faster and more reliable speeds in the areas of the home where they work to keep them connected.

Intelligent WiFi Plus will help improve in-home coverage in hard to reach areas and is particularly beneficial for those in large households with lots of connected devices.

The launch of the new service comes at a time when Virgin Media saw record breaking levels of data consumption in 2020 driven by an increase in smart-home devices in households, remote working, streaming, video calling and online gaming.

Jeff Dodds, Chief Operating Officer at Virgin Media, said: “Intelligent WiFi Plus is our most advanced and impressive WiFi service to date that will help remove broadband blackspots and bring faster and more reliable speeds throughout the home. Whether our customers are working, streaming, browsing, playing or keeping connected online, the combo of new Hub features and WiFi Pods provides a step change in connectivity that won’t let you down.”

Intelligent WiFi Plus is available now at no extra cost for Ultimate Oomph and Gig1 customers with other Virgin Media customers able to upgrade to the new service for just £5 per month. Customers will be able to request the new service by calling customer care and most Hub 3 customers can order via the Connect App.

Virgin Media is in the process of upgrading its entire network to gigabit speeds by the end of this year. To date, more than seven million homes across the UK have access to these hyperfast speeds through Gig1.

New Hub features already available for millions of Virgin Media customers

Virgin Media’s existing Intelligent WiFi features such as channel optimisation, band steering and airtime fairness, have received significant upgrades which will help make in-home connectivity more seamless. These include:

Channel optimisation 2.0: More channels have been included into the existing channel optimisation technology, which is designed to keep gadgets out of WiFi traffic jams. With more 5GHz channels available, mostly used by newer devices, Intelligent WiFi Plus will reduce WiFi traffic delays even further by finding quieter channels for devices to use.

Adaptive band steering: This improvement analyses WiFi use continuously and adapts device connections to help make sure that they are on the right WiFi frequency at the right time. This helps to ensure in-home WiFi is optimised with all gadgets able to perform at their very best.

In-home roaming: This slick new feature makes the most of the new Intelligent WiFi Pods to predict which WiFi Pod or Hub is best for a device to connect to. It uses WiFi signal strength around the home and determines how busy things are at certain times of day to choose the best point of access for each connection.

All Virgin Media customers with Hub 3 or Hub 4 routers are already benefitting from these incredible features.

Intelligent WiFi Pods – meet the WiFighters

The super-smart Intelligent WiFi Plus service includes new Intelligent WiFi Pods, which pack in next-level mesh WiFi technology to create a connectivity bubble that covers the whole home – including those hard-to-reach broadband blackspots.

The WiFi Pods are also designed to reduce the impact of neighbouring WiFi networks by automatically changing settings to stop interference.

Upon sign up, a WiFi Pod will be sent in the post and doesn’t require an engineer visit to set up.

The WiFi Pods can be simply placed between a strong-signal spot and low-signal spot in a home and will automatically build a mesh network to bring faster speeds to more rooms in the house. They can also be unplugged and moved to any location in the home, hassle free.

Connect App

The Connect app from Virgin Media continues to be the central control panel for all Intelligent WiFi Plus features for Hub 3 users, with Hub 4 users set to gain access later this year. The app is quick and easy to set up and is free to download.

Through the app, customers can test the strength of their WiFi in each room; manage devices connected to their home network; pause devices – handy when the children are up past their bedtime – and access in-app customer support to help resolve any issues.