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UK Top 8 Fastest Broadband ISPs by Download Speed for November 2012

Tuesday, Dec 4th, 2012 (7:04 am) - Score 895

The latest monthly summary of anecdotal consumer broadband ISP speed testing data, which covers the November 2012 period, reveals that the average download speed in the United Kingdom has fallen from 18.038Mbps (Megabits per second) last month to 17.054Mbps now. Meanwhile the average upload speed has remained largely unchanged at 2.13Mbps.

According to Broadband.co.uk, which collected the data, the fastest ISP remains Virgin Media with an average download speed of 32.394Mbps (down slightly from 33.430Mbps last month). Elsewhere BT took the top spot for fastest upload speeds from Eclipse Internet by recording an upstream rate of 3.449Mbps, which is well above Eclipse’s 2.747Mbps (these two frequently trade places at the top).

It should be remembered that faster speeds from the latest superfast broadband technologies (e.g. FTTC etc.) tend to have a disproportionate effect, with fewer customers having a big impact on the overall average vs older and significantly slower services (e.g. ADSL). In other words ADSL/ADSL2+ based connections, which still dominate the market, aren’t actually getting much faster.

Top 8 UK ISPs – Download Speed (Megabits/sec)
1. Virgin Media – 32.394Mbps
2. BT – 15.567Mbps
3. Eclipse Internet – 15.100Mbps
4. PlusNet – 11.950Mbps
5. Sky Broadband – 7.741Mbps
6. O2 (BE Broadband) – 6.247Mbps
7. TalkTalk / Tiscali – 5.112Mbps
8. EE (Orange UK) – 5.051Mbps

Top 8 UK ISPs – Upload Speed (Megabits/sec)
1. BT – 3.449Mbps
2. PlusNet – 2.754Mbps
3. Eclipse Internet – 2.747Mbps
4. Virgin Media – 2.624Mbps
5. Sky Broadband – 0.904Mbps
6. O2 (BE Broadband) – 0.897Mbps
7. TalkTalk / Tiscali – 0.695Mbps
8. EE (Orange UK) – 0.629Mbps

Readers should always take anecdotal data like this with a huge pinch of salt. Every home is different and performance can be affected by all sorts of issues, many of which are beyond the ISPs ability to control. We do not consider the above data to be a reliable barometer for individual homes but it can be used to highlight other changes in the market. In addition, the table does not include smaller ISPs because they simply don’t produce enough data for a viable comparison.

Ofcom’s most recent August 2012 Broadband ISP Speeds Study contains a lot of similarly useful information about the country’s internet connectivity performance across different ISPs and technology types, which helps to highlight how the speed increases tend to be coming from adopters of faster technologies. On top of that anecdotal speed tests only tell you part of the story as other aspects of internet performance, such as latency times (ping), are not well reflected.

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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