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Virgin Media Top of Netflix’s 2014 vs 2013 UK ISP Broadband Speed Index

Tuesday, December 9th, 2014 (8:25 am) - Score 1,066

Netflix, the Internet Movie and TV video streaming giant, has just published their latest ISP Speed Index update for the United Kingdom and revealed that Virgin Media comes top of the performance table with an average speed of 3.49Mbps (Megabits per second).

Generally we prefer not to publish too many updates concerning Netflix’s UK ISP Speed Index because the performance scores are slow to change and their information can be a little misleading without the proper context. The index is simply a measure of “prime time” Netflix video streaming performance per ISP and as such it should never be taken as a table that reflects the actual speed of your broadband connection.

The scores can be influence by various different factors, such as whether or not most people are streaming in SD (Standard Definition), HD (High Definition) or 4K (ULTRA HD) video quality. The dynamic nature of different video codecs (speeds vary as the video stream changes), slow WiFi networks and an ISPs Traffic Management measures can also play a part in how the results are formed.

As a result of all this it’s not surprising to find that the average performance isn’t dramatically different between ISPs, although Virgin Media does appear to have a strong lead. On the other hand this might just be because Netflix is integrated into their TV platform and “superfast” broadband users are arguably more likely to make use of HD than SD streams (note: BT also has a lot of ‘superfast’ customers via FTTC).

netflix performance 2014

Netflix UK – Major ISP Rankings, Dec 2014 Report (Nov 2014 Data)
1. Virgin Media 3.49Mbps
2. BT 3.19Mbps
3. Sky Broadband 2.87Mbps
4. EE 2.82Mbps
5. TalkTalk 2.81Mbps

Meanwhile we’re coming up to the end of 2014 and so it’s probably also worth showing how things have changed since the same time last year.

NetflixUK – Major ISP Rankings, Dec 2013 Report
1. Virgin Media 2.99Mbps
2. BT 2.66Mbps
3. Sky Broadband 2.44Mbps
4. TalkTalk 2.35Mbps
5. EE 2.32Mbps

In summary there’s not a lot you can gleam from Netflix’s limited data, which is one of the reasons why we’d wish they’d make some changes. A more useful data set could show the difference in performance between SD, HD and 4K streams, preferably alongside one that also revealed the speed during different periods of the day (e.g. peak and off-peak).

On top of that Netflix sadly only includes the biggest ISPs and ideally it would be good to see a top 10 or 20 table, although we suspect that their data might be rather limited for calculating the scores of smaller providers.

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Mark Jackson
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 Twitter, , Facebook and Linkedin.
Leave a Comment
1 Response
  1. Avatar Reza Reza zadeh says:

    Your sent to me a message through at 2014 April 18 holding the topic as ( your cell number has been awarded 3,000,000,00 USD from virginmedia award uk to claim. Email your name&country to virgin@ virginmediaplc.com

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