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The number of fixed broadband lines in the UK reached 20.89 million in the first quarter of 2012, it has been reported.

Latest figures published by media regulator Ofcom reveal that another 46,000 individual connections were added between January and March this year.

In Q4 2011, the number of fixed broadband lines stood at 20.43 million.

Of the Q1 2012 total, 8,263,000 ADSL lines took advantage of local loop unbundling (LLU), while another 7,910,000 lines used a non-LLU ADSL connection.

The number of LLU ADSL connections increased significantly from 7,946,000 in the final quarter of 2011, as more households and businesses upgraded their services.

Q1 2012 also saw a rise in the number of cable broadband subscribers using Virgin Media's UK network.

The number of cable broadband customers increased from 4,120,000 to 4,165,000 during the first three months of the year.

And a significant rise in the number of homes and businesses signing up for fibre broadband services was also witnessed by Ofcom.

Subscriber levels increased from 412,000 to 552,000 between January and March.

Some 29.3 per cent of UK fixed-line broadband customers were signed up to a BT Retail broadband deal during Q1 2012, Ofcom revealed.

Meanwhile, the media regulator reported a fall in the number of active mobile broadband subscribers currently using a USB modem.

The number of UK dongle users fell by 60,000 to just under five million, with Ofcom pointing to seasonal factors as a likely reason for this fall.

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