Fibre broadband providers top the speed charts

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Virgin Media used its superfast cable network to set a new average download speed of 10.9Mb, the latest monthly speed results have revealed

Both Eclipse Internet and BT broadband, both of which now offer speeds of up to 40Mb broadband over the new BT Infinity network, increased their average speeds by the end of the year.

Eclipse pushed O2 mobile broadband from its usual second place position with an average of 5.5Mb, while BT moved up to fourth place with an increase to 4.7Mb.

Clodagh Murphy, director of Eclipse Internet, said: "We are really pleased to see these latest statistics as we have steadily been moving up the ranking tables - last June we were 8th and to have taken O2's place, 2nd only to Virgin Media, is positive news for our customers."

O2 still outperformed the majority of its copper wire telephone line providers, taking third place with an average download speed of 5.2Mb - though this was a slight drop on November's 5.4Mb average.

Overall download speeds also jumped to a new high of 5.6Mb, said Broadband.co.uk.

Michael Phillips, Broadbandchoices.co.uk product director, added: "More broadband providers are launching packages over BT's new fibre optic broadband network, with TalkTalk broadband planning to launch a fibre optic broadband Boost in February.

"And in addition to its 50Mb broadband, which is already available to nearly 13 million customers, Virgin Media is also rolling out its new 100Mb broadband package across its network.

"More superfast broadband connections will always be good news for consumers, as average speeds will increase across the board.

"However, some people - especially those in more rural areas - could have to wait until 2015 or even later before fibre optic broadband is available in their area," he added.