Akamai‘s latest quarterly State of the Internet Q3 2012 study claims that the average global broadband download speed has fallen by 6.8% since Q2 to reach 2.8Mbps (Megabits per second). By comparison the average speed in the United Kingdom reached 6.3Mbps (up from 5.7Mbps in Q2) and ranked us as 17th fastest in the world.
The UK also saw peak speeds of 28.1Mbps (up from 24.5Mbps in Q2), although this is still well below the fastest country, South Korea, which harnessed its national fibre optic network (FTTH) to deliver average speeds of 14.7Mbps (up from 14.2Mbps in Q2) and a peak of 48.8Mbps. By comparison the fastest EU countries, Latvia and Switzerland, were tied with average speeds of 8.7Mbps.
Most of the world’s fastest countries (e.g. South Korea, Japan) have strong Fibre-to-the-Home or similar telecoms infrastructure that often doesn’t appear to deliver on the technology’s full capability (e.g. 100Mbps+), which is usually due to a mix of capacity constraints, Traffic Management measures and ISPs offering slower speed packages as options for a lower price.
The report also reveals that 62% of broadband users in the UK experienced internet download speeds of above 4Mbps (up from 56% in Q2) and 11% are able to get download speeds of 10Mbps+ (up from 7.6% in Q2). Meanwhile the average Mobile Broadband download speed in the UK fell to around 2.6Mbps from 2.9Mbps in Q2.
Akamai’s data typically reflects the regional performance of its Content Delivery Network (CDN) and their connections with related ISP servers around the world, thus its data should perhaps not be taken as a reliable reflection of real-world end-user connection speeds.
Akamai’s State of the Internet Q3 2012 Report