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Increased Demand on Internet Services Not an Issue, say Broadband Firms

David Paul


home working

The companies say that they can cope with increased use of services while people work from home during the coronavirus.

Internet Service Providers (ISPs) in the UK have said that customers should not be concerned about extra demand on internet services while working from home during the coronavirus outbreak, claiming that they have contingencies in place cope with it.

Broadband services are designed to deal with ten times increase in usage during the evening when more people are at home. Openreach has said that its existing network is able to handle the increased strain during the daytime.

“We expect more businesses will be asking their employees to work from home during this period, so connecting remotely is going to be increasingly important for people”, an Openreach spokesperson stated.

“In terms of capacity, our network is designed to manage very heavy usage in the evenings when people are streaming movies or gaming. We don’t expect that people using email, office collaboration software or video conferencing during the day will exceed this peak load, so we’re confident that our network has the capacity to deal with any daytime increase.”

Howard Watson, group CTO at BT, said: “Overall, traffic from work is around a quarter of what we see in the evening from households.

“Because of this, I am really confident that we will be able to accommodate people working from home, and their work from home traffic, on both our core network and our access network.”


Other ISPs, such as Virgin Media and TalkTalk, have also agreed that their networks can cope. Both companies say that they are yet to see any significant increases in network traffic and say internet services will continue as normal.

The country was effectively put into lockdown last night (16th of March) after the UK Government changed its strategy regarding how it handles the coronavirus outbreak.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson has told people to “avoid non-essential travel and work from home if they can” in an effort to contain the spread of the virus.

Confirmed cases of the virus in the UK currently stand at 1,553, although experts believe that the real number could be between 35,000 and 50,000. 18 new cases have been announced in Scotland, taking the total confirmed number in the country to 171.

David Paul

Staff Writer, DIGIT

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