Broadband Providers available in Bolton include Virgin Media, Sky Broadband, and BT. Bolton's fastest provider is Virgin Media, with a median speed of 89 Mbps. The most popular provider in Bolton is also Virgin Media. The average broadband speed in Bolton in 2022 is 90 Mbps, and the median speed locally is 50 Mbps.
Broadband speed data in Bolton
|Average Speed||90 Mbps|
|Median Speed||50 Mbps|
|Fastest Provider||Virgin Media|
|Gigabit Fibre Availability||89.79%|
Bolton has the best fibre access out of all major cities in the North West, and is among the top 100 best major cities in terms of fibre access across the UK as a whole. Our analysis of Ofcom coverage data shows that Gigabit fibre is available to 90% of residents. UltraFast 300+ Mbps is available to 91% of residents, while SuperFast 30+ Mbps broadband is available to 99% of Bolton's households.
Great broadband infrastructure results in very high speed test averages in Bolton postcodes like BL1, BL3, BL2, BL4, and BL7. Over the past year, we’ve recorded a 50 Mbps median internet speed in Bolton, which is 36% above the United Kingdom national median of 37 Mbps.
Bolton increased access to Gigabit speeds by 89 percentage points in the past year. The buildout rate is also better than neighbouring major cities like Warrington (gained 88 percentate points), Trafford (gained 69 percentate points), and Liverpool (gained 54 percentate points). In addition, real-world speed test data shows that Bolton is dramatically faster than Horwich (70% slower) and Westhoughton (57% slower).
We rank each provider relative to all providers in The United Kingdom based on their median download and upload speeds, measured round trip time latencies, and the percentage of speeds tests that exceed 50 Mbps.
Customer ratings are based on local reviews matched to Bolton IP addresses. Providers can be scored on a range of 1 to 10, and ranked relative to all providers in The United Kingdom.
Median Speed Test Result
The median is the middle result in the range of tests we measured for each provider in Bolton in the past year. Median speeds provide a better comparison than raw averages because they control for the longtail of tests related to Wi-Fi issues. The charts below represent the distribution of tests associated with each provider from low to high.
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See the chart below for annual reporting on fibre build rates in the Bolton area. Availability is based on population in postcodes marked as served by Ofcom Connected Nations reports, according to the most recent census.
|1,000+ Mbps||300+ Mbps||30+ Mbps|
of people living in Bolton can obtain to 1,000+ Mbps broadband speeds
of Bolton residents can get 300+ Mbps internet service
Superfast 30+ Mbps Broadband
availability in Bolton
Poor Broadband Speeds
of Bolton is limited to broadband speeds under 30 Mbps
|Year||Bolton Average||United Kingdom Average||Difference|
|2018||31.96 Mbps||26.27 Mbps||21.66% Faster|
|2019||37.49 Mbps||30.63 Mbps||22.40% Faster|
|2020||102.83 Mbps||80.31 Mbps||28.04% Faster|
|2021||89.26 Mbps||66.05 Mbps||35.14% Faster|
|Percentage of Speed Tests in Speed Range|
|Internet Speed Range||Bolton||United Kingdom|
|Very Slow: under 10 Mbps||17.30%||19.92%|
|Slow: 10-30 Mbps||20.72%||25.74%|
|Adequate: 30-60 Mbps||21.00%||25.20%|
|Good: 60-80 Mbps||8.73%||10.20%|
|Fast: 80-300 Mbps||26.84%||15.33%|
|Very Fast: over 300 Mbps||5.42%||3.60%|
|City / Town||Max Speed||Typical Speed Range||Median|
|Bolton||904.53 Mbps||36.57—142.19 Mbps||50.06 Mbps||-|
|Greater London||5794.21 Mbps||33.1—96.06 Mbps||45.61 Mbps||Slower|
|Birmingham||2786.06 Mbps||29.35—107.11 Mbps||38.56 Mbps||Slower|
|Liverpool||1134.53 Mbps||25.63—89.99 Mbps||34.68 Mbps||Slower|
|Nottingham||2371.49 Mbps||15.99—39.85 Mbps||18.81 Mbps||Slower|
|Sheffield||936.79 Mbps||23.81—68.97 Mbps||32.12 Mbps||Slower|
|Bristol||943.13 Mbps||30.46—109.99 Mbps||42.42 Mbps||Slower|
|Glasgow||913.93 Mbps||20.72—71.44 Mbps||32.11 Mbps||Slower|
|Leicester||935.89 Mbps||27.49—99.53 Mbps||37.05 Mbps||Slower|
|Edinburgh||874.24 Mbps||29.98—107.56 Mbps||38.13 Mbps||Slower|
|Position||City||Max Speed||Typical Speed Range||Median||# Providers|
|1||Bolton||904.53 Mbps||36.57—142.19 Mbps||50.06 Mbps||14|
|2||Westhoughton||932.8 Mbps||23.82—69.15 Mbps||31.79 Mbps||9|
|3||Horwich||815.3 Mbps||23.05—53.41 Mbps||29.51 Mbps||7|
We class broadband speed distributions as follows: very slow under 10 Mbps; slow 10-30 Mbps; adequate 30-60 Mbps; good 60-80 Mbps; fast 80-300 Mbps; very fast over 300 Mbps.
|Position||City / Town||Max Speed||Typical Speed Range||Median|
|1||Bolton||904.53 Mbps||36.57—142.19 Mbps||50.06 Mbps||-|
We analysed the results of people in Bolton testing broadband providers multiple times, with each test starting no more than 30 minutes after the previous speed test. On average, people in Bolton ran 4 internet speed tests per session. Looking at broadband download speeds, if the Bolton resident's final test is 10% faster than their starting download speed, we count that as a succesful and faster speed test result. We count an unsuccessful, slower result if the final result is 10% slower than the starting result; we'd hope their ISP contacts them ASAP! For broadband speed tests that don't vary by that much, we consider the final result to be the same. For Bolton's residents, of the internet speed tests we measured, 42.89% were fast, 25.35% slow, and 31.76% broadly the same.
|Provider||Start Time||# Tests||Duration||Start Speed||End Speed||Status|
|Virgin Media||24 Jan 2022 22:42:53||4||12 mins||54.26 Mbps||177.99 Mbps||Improved|
|Virgin Media||24 Jan 2022 22:45:03||2||36 secs||9.54 Mbps||7.72 Mbps||Needs help, very slow|
|Virgin Media||24 Jan 2022 22:09:20||2||14 secs||192.17 Mbps||203.78 Mbps|
|Virgin Media||24 Jan 2022 22:02:51||2||3 mins||88.07 Mbps||103.45 Mbps||Improved|
|Virgin Media||24 Jan 2022 21:46:35||6||14 mins||19.7 Mbps||20.75 Mbps|
|Virgin Media||24 Jan 2022 21:44:35||2||7 mins||29.26 Mbps||148.68 Mbps||Improved|
|Sky Broadband||24 Jan 2022 21:17:17||2||19 mins||21.92 Mbps||4.78 Mbps||Needs help, very slow|
|Vodafone||24 Jan 2022 21:08:21||2||22 mins||45.67 Mbps||45.75 Mbps|
|Virgin Media||24 Jan 2022 20:56:07||2||15 mins||191.61 Mbps||127.11 Mbps||Needs help|
|Virgin Media||24 Jan 2022 20:43:14||2||71 secs||195.37 Mbps||203.71 Mbps|
|Virgin Media||24 Jan 2022 20:19:31||3||112 secs||31.24 Mbps||42.2 Mbps||Improved|
|Virgin Media||24 Jan 2022 19:48:25||4||26 mins||0.04 Mbps||13.69 Mbps||Improved|
|Virgin Media||24 Jan 2022 19:51:51||2||20 mins||209.6 Mbps||196.28 Mbps|
|BT||24 Jan 2022 20:01:00||2||5 mins||18.48 Mbps||18.42 Mbps|
|Virgin Media||24 Jan 2022 19:48:30||2||105 secs||31.16 Mbps||71.68 Mbps||Improved|
|Virgin Media||24 Jan 2022 19:41:28||2||34 secs||414.39 Mbps||295.04 Mbps||Needs help|
|Virgin Media||24 Jan 2022 19:35:37||2||36 secs||34.07 Mbps||96.06 Mbps||Improved|
|Virgin Media||24 Jan 2022 19:25:27||2||2 mins||34.98 Mbps||13.75 Mbps||Needs help|
|Virgin Media||24 Jan 2022 18:28:25||8||37 mins||80 Mbps||97.65 Mbps||Improved|
|Virgin Media||24 Jan 2022 18:47:07||3||2 mins||19.07 Mbps||25.4 Mbps||Improved|
|#||Provider Name||Max Speed||Typical Speed Range|
|1||Virgin Media||838.12 Mbps||59.66—208.82 Mbps|
|2||Zone Broadband||805.82 Mbps||36.12—171.4 Mbps|
|3||Hyperoptic||105.05 Mbps||53.04—67.97 Mbps|
|4||BT||904.53 Mbps||29.41—70.6 Mbps|
|5||Vodafone||898.52 Mbps||30.85—66.37 Mbps|
|6||CIX||626.49 Mbps||7.79—40.95 Mbps|
|7||EE||424.5 Mbps||23.63—60.79 Mbps|
|8||TalkTalk||473.69 Mbps||22.91—52.65 Mbps|
|9||Sky Broadband||505.06 Mbps||20.24—57.9 Mbps|
|10||Zen Internet||500.5 Mbps||6.29—47.49 Mbps|
|11||Plusnet||74.19 Mbps||20.43—46.3 Mbps|
|12||Shell Energy||73.25 Mbps||6.28—21.04 Mbps|
|13||Origin Broadband||24.29 Mbps||2.38—22.59 Mbps|
|14||KCOM||18.28 Mbps||2.44—4.17 Mbps|
Bolton has 14 ISPs tested by its 285,372 residents.
Virgin Media is the fastest broadband provider in Bolton with 838.12 Mbps, and an average internet speed range of 59.66—208.82 Mbps.
The best internet provider in Bolton is Virgin Media, and their users typically see broadband speeds in the range of 59.66 to 208.82 Mbps.
Users in Bolton see an average internet speed of 36.57 up to 233 Mbps, and the fastest speed we've seen is 904.53 Mbps.
Broadband service from Virgin Media is available in Bolton, and the fastest speed we've seen from them is 838.12 Mbps.
Broadband service from Sky Broadband is available in Bolton, and the fastest speed we've seen from them is 505.06 Mbps.
Broadband service from BT is available in Bolton, and the fastest speed we've seen from them is 904.53 Mbps.
Yes, BT offers full fibre to the home (also called FTTH or FTTP) to 219 of Bolton's postcodes.
The broadband provider with the most users in Bolton is Virgin Media.
Author: Thomas Buck
Last Reviewed By: Tyler Cooper
Published: 10 Nov 2019
Last Updated: 24 Jan 2022
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