Telewest Broadband has begun a large-scale consumer trial of its 1Mbps Blueyonder residential high-speed Internet service.

The trial is being run with 1,500 residential customers in Scotland. The company plans to launch the service in the rest of the UK later this year. It offers a continuous cable connection to the Internet that’s nearly 20 times faster than dial-up services. Telewest customers in Scotland interested in testing the service should register for the trial.

The need for speed Blueyonder claims its service will “easily” outperform BT’s residential ADSL services. In application, it means Blueyonder customers will be able to download a 30-second video clip in 12 seconds – or download 10MB of software in 1 minute, 15 seconds.

Philip Jansen, managing director of Telewest Broadband’s consumer division, said: “This is the first stage of Blueyonder, setting another benchmark for Internet services in the UK. We intend to use consumer-feedback to ensure this service offers an unparalleled multimedia experience.”

The company is working to establish additional features to make the service stand out, Jansen confirmed: “We do want to make it really competitive – if possible, we’re aiming to bring the service in at under £50 per month” Additional features, such as free technical support, free Web space, and tools to build advanced Web sites are being considered.

“We all feel the need for speed, but our 1Mbps service will be about more than bandwidth alone. By concentrating on the overall quality of the customer-experience, the trial will help us deliver a service that leaves ADSL-providers dead in their copper tracks,” Jansen claimed.