It’s official. The UK has some of the slowest broadband speeds in Europe, with an average of 16.5 Mbps . In non-tech speak, that means it will take about an hour to download your favourite boxset or epic blockbuster. Compare that to lucky Singaporeans, who could download four movies in the same time, with an average speed of 55 Mbps.
It’s a kick in the teeth for Britain’s broadband infrastructure as we rank 31st in the world when it comes to download speed, lagging way behind fellow European countries such as Sweden (average speed of 40 Mbps), Denmark, the Netherlands (both with averages of 33.5 Mbps) and Norway (29 Mbps). Even economically poorer European countries, such as Latvia, can download stuff faster than us buffering Brits.
Of course, it’s all relative. There are 189 countries listed in the broadband speed rankings, so being number 31 perhaps isn’t as bad as it sounds. Bottom of the list is Yemen, with an average speed of 0.34 Mbps – taking around two days to download a movie in HD.
Getting Britain online is the job of BT’s subsidiary Openreach, who has promised to spend £600 million in order to provide broadband to the 1.4 million homes in the UK that currently don’t have it. But having broadband doesn’t necessarily mean households are actually getting what they pay for, and calls have been made for industry regulator Ofcom to crack down on companies that don’t give customers the speeds that they’ve shelled out for.
In the meantime, Ofcom has worked out that UK households need a minimum of 10 Mbps to do all the things an average family does – such as use multiple devices to download music, games, film and TV. Despite this, it’s estimated that nearly 7 million households don’t meet that minimum .
So, if you feel your current broadband package ‘could do better’, then why not see if it can? And if you’re worried about too much choice, we can help steer you through the maze to find the right broadband for you. From explaining ADSL to fibre optic to bundling, we’ve got it all, so start comparing.