BT fixes bug that cut super-fast broadband down to super-slow 1Mbps

BT fixes bug that cut super-fast broadband down to super-slow 1Mbps

Summary: BT is testing a firmware fix for a Home Hub 3 router bug that slowed connections from around 40 Mbps to less than 1Mbps download speeds for some customers using wired connections

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TOPICS: Broadband
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BT is scrambling to fix a router glitch that dragged down speeds for some Infinity super-fast broadband customers, delivering less than 1Mbps rather than the up to 40Mbps they expected.

Over the past few weeks, people have been complaining on BT's community forum that their download rates kept dropping from the super-fast speeds they are paying for. On Friday, BT confirmed the problem with its Home Hub 3 routers and said it is testing a remote fix for affected fibre broadband subscribers.

"We have identified an issue that occasionally affects a very small segment of our fibre base, and it is only affecting customers who try to connect their BT Home Hub 3 via a wired connection," BT said in a statement, following reports from ISPreview.co.uk. "Customers using wireless connections are not affected by this problem — nor are non-fibre broadband customers."

"Should a customer experience this problem, they are able to fix it simply by pressing the restart button on the hub," it added.

However, people on the BTCare forum said that turning the router off and on again was not working for them.

"Occasionally the speed grinds to a halt, and I get below 1M bits," said contributor Whoop_John. "This is now happening daily, and I don't know why."

In May, BT said that more than 550,000 people have signed up for its Infinity super-fast broadband service, which provides downloads of up to 80Mbps. The company is carrying out a £2.5bn project to take fibre connections to two-thirds of the UK by 2014.

BT said it will automatically and remotely update the Infinity router firmware once it has finished testing the fix, but did not give a timescale for this to happen. In the meantime, at least one customer has reported that an engineer was sent out to replace the router.

Topic: Broadband

Tom Espiner

About Tom Espiner

Tom is a technology reporter for ZDNet.com. He covers the security beat, writing about everything from hacking and cybercrime to threats and mitigation. He also focuses on open source and emerging technologies, all the while trying to cut through greenwash.

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  • It's about time we stopped lazily referring to BT's fibre to the cabinet service as 'Fibre broadband'. It is fibre to the copper telephone line. We will have fibre broadband when we get fibre to our homes and businesses. This is a huge distinction since FTTC, though cheaper to deploy, is inevitably prone to the limitations of copper regarding speed, lack symmetry and quality of service.
    mcorbett01
  • Virgin have been referring to their network as Fibre for years but the connection to the house is also copper (in the form of coax). Effectively, they are also FTTC. I agree it's misleading but that said, copper also has it's place. Even with fibre to the home, there is probably still going to be a copper cable somewhere as I think it will be a long while before homes start to use fibre inside.
    anonymous