UK broadband only 'meeting needs for today', says study

By Dave Bailey
01 Oct 2009 View Comments
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Global broadband
UK 25th in global broadband performance ranking

The UK's broadband infrastructure is on a par with that of Iceland and Estonia and positioned 25th out of 66 countries, according to a worldwide study of the quality and penetration of national broadband infrastructures.

The research carried out jointly by Oxford University's Said Business School and Spain's University of Oviedo's Department of Applied Economics, for networking giant Cisco, corralled countries into four groups: ready for tomorrow; comfortable for today; meeting needs for today; and below needs for today.

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The UK fell into the third group, but the report said the UK infrastructure will improve markedly if the country follows through with projected optical fibre rollouts and cable upgrades.

Furthermore, UK download speeds are up 39 per cent on average, compared with last year, and upload speeds have increased by 37 per cent.

However, network latency has increased by 8 per cent. Latency is critical when real-time applications such as video conferencing and IP telephony are used.

The study used speed test data from within each country to benchmark broadband performance and found that the average global download speed was 4.7Mbit/s, while the upload rate was around a third at 1.3Mbit/s.

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