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OECD Ranks UK 8th in its Fixed Broadband Rankings of 34 Countries

Thursday, Jul 19th, 2012 (8:14 am) - Score 5,799

The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), which includes 34 countries that claim to support democracy and a market economy, has ranked the UK 8th in its latest Q4-2011 fixed wired broadband rankings, with 33.3 subscribers per 100 inhabitants. But we do poorly in other areas.

Overall Switzerland comes top with an impressive 39.9 subscribers per 100 inhabitants, which compares will with the OECD average of 25.6. Bottom was Turkey with a score of just 10.4. Fixed wired broadband subscriptions reached 314 million in the OECD area at the end of 2011, while growth slowed to 1.8% in the second half.

In terms of technology, 55.8% of fixed broadband connections in the OECD came from DSL (e.g. ADSL) services, 30% from cable (e.g. Virgin Media) and 13.7% from fibre optic (FTTH / B /P). Sadly the UK remains dominated by DSL connections (see below) and has practically no fibre in its diet.

oecd dec 2011 fixed broadband ranking

Elsewhere the average advertised broadband download speed (i.e. not real-world performance) within the OECD for September 2011 was 41,009Kbps (41Mbps), which falls to 34,443Kbps (34.4Mbps) for the United Kingdom. Unsurprisingly Japan (149,616Kbps) and Sweden (101,807Kbps) top the pack thanks to their abundance of FTTH style telecoms infrastructure.

This still seems surprisingly high given that most of the UK remains dominated by up to 24Mbps (ADSL2+) technology, although the OECD only used 11 offers to make the calculation and this could potentially be skewed if they included too many superfast broadband packages. It’s also possible that faster business connections might be having some impact. The median score of 20,480Kbps (20Mbps) is perhaps closer to reality.

oecd dec 2011 advertised download speeds

In terms of price the UK was found to charge between $0.61 (£0.39) to $4.20 (£2.68) per megabit (Mb) of advertised speed (including line charge), which makes us one of the cheapest markets for comparable value.

oecd dec 2011 prices per megabit usd

Finally the OECD is also home to a total of 667,400,934 Mobile Broadband connections, which includes 403m from Smartphones, 257m from dedicated mobile internet connections (e.g. USB Modems etc.), 4.3m from fixed terrestrial services (e.g. wifi) and just 1.5m for Satellite.

By Mark Jackson
Mark is a professional technology writer, IT consultant and computer engineer from Dorset (England), he also founded ISPreview in 1999 and enjoys analysing the latest telecoms and broadband developments. Find me on X (Twitter), Mastodon, Facebook and .
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