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Virgin Trains leads the way with 5G onboard connectivity

Virgin Trains has become the first train operator to trial onboard 5G Wi-Fi. The trial comes in partnership with McLaren Applied and Vodafone, as efforts continue to bring improved broadband speeds onboard trains.

Once rolled out, the 5G connectivity on the West Coast Mainline will offer internet connections of up to ten times faster.

The cutting-edge technology was piloted in November on Virgin Trains services between London Euston and Birmingham New Street, and London Euston and Manchester Piccadilly.

From Dec 8, when the West Coast Mainline franchise switches over to become Avanti West Coast, continued testing will be carried out.

Once fully operational, passengers travelling on these services will be able to work on-the-go, with better email access, smoother video conferencing and live streaming content anywhere offering 5G connectivity.

John Sullivan, Chief Information Officer at Virgin Trains says:

“Virgin Trains has always aimed to deliver the best customer experience by offering our passengers the latest in technological innovation. Over the course of our 22-year tenure, we have launched industry firsts including Amazon Alexa ticket booking, disruption management, Automatic Delay Repay and BEAM – our on-board entertainment streaming service.

“We may be coming to the end of our time running the West Coast Mainline but Virgin Trains is excited to be playing an important part in the early stages of this 5G project, which is another example of how we have led the way in digital innovation within the rail industry.”


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