For heavy internet users, businesses, and those who use a lot of high-quality media content, a fast connection is highly important. Broadband speeds have increased significantly in the past few years, and furthermore there are more ways to get broadband than before, either via the BT network (which doesn’t limit you to getting your service from BT since other providers also use their network), cable, or fibre optic connections. Fibre and cable are quite similar in their capacity and also their pricing.
Whichever you choose, you can expect speed rates far higher than was on offer previously with dial-up or even the early days of broadband. Virgin cable for example allows speeds of 200-300Mbps, and most fibre-optic packages are at least 50Mbps.
This can allow very easy downloading of content. Standard movies can be downloaded in minutes and HD movies in 20 minutes or so, and you could download the average kindle eBook in 2 seconds. With the fastest connection in the UK you could download 180 eBooks in an hour! And a 50Mbps connection is more than enough for Skype and no-buffer streaming. Game fans would be well-accommodated with such an offering, since 6Mbps is usually sufficient for playing online.
The main providers of high speed broadband are BT, Virgin, EE, Sky, Plusnet and a range of niche providers (many with offerings particularly suited to businesses).