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BT saw a huge rise in the number of people using its wireless broadband hotspots over the festive period.

The broadband provider has reported a 317 per cent rise in the number of Wi-Fi minutes used on New Year's Eve, and a 260 per cent rise in data consumption.

On December 31st, the number of unique users also rose by 88 per cent, while individual Wi-Fi sessions were up by 138 per cent.

Daily Wi-Fi sessions per user increased during December as a whole, at 3.7 compared to the annual average of 3.4. On Christmas Day this rose to 4.7 sessions per user.

Average year-on-year increases of 289 per cent in Wi-Fi minutes and 245 per cent in usage were reported between December 22nd and January 1st.

Christmas Day Wi-Fi sessions were up 289 per cent, while the number of minutes used rose by 407 per cent - owing to many new consumer devices coming online on December 25th.

Andy Baker, Chief Executive Officer at BT Wi-Fi, said that with people off work, the company had expected more people to log-on to the internet from remote locations using wireless broadband.

"This year’s jump in sessions shows users are more comfortable with their devices, which is ultimately driving demand for Wi-Fi," he stated.

All UK consumers can log on to BT's public wireless broadband network, with services free for the company's subscribers.

BT offers more than 4.5 million Wi-Fi hotspots across the UK, a 40 per cent rise in the last 12 months alone.

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