The British broadband index

When it comes to broadband speeds, we can all agree that the faster our broadband connection is, the happier we tend to be. For many of us, we’re happiest online when we aren’t dealing with buffering videos, connection issues and random disconnections.
However, for many of us in the UK, these connection issues can still very much be a reality and other countries often have better infrastructure and far faster connections by comparison. With some areas in Britain now pioneering massive improvements in broadband connectivity, which areas are getting left behind?
We’ve found the average download speeds of areas all around Britain, including which areas are currently failing to meet minimum government standards the most.

The UK areas with the fastest broadband download speeds

Of all the speeds recorded, Kingston upon Hull, York and West Dunbartonshire take the top three places. Kingston upon Hull has consistently retained high speeds, while York saw an average improvement of 91 Mbit/s in just one year.

The UK areas with the slowest broadband download speeds

Of the speeds recorded, the Orkney Islands, Shetland Islands and West Devon were the worst three places in the country. In fact, the Orkney Islands have consistently recorded the lowest average speeds for the past three years.

London’s average broadband download speeds by borough

Of all the Boroughs in London, Richmond upon Thames has been recorded as having the fastest average speed, nearly reaching 100 Mbit/s at 94. Perhaps surprisingly, the slowest recorded average speeds were in the City of London, at 31.6 Mbit/s, more than three times slower than in other parts of the capital.

The Universal Service Obligation

The Universal Service Obligation (USO) is a guarantee in place to ensure the population has access to a ‘decent’ internet connection and is defined as having a minimum download speed of 10 Mbit/s, and a minimum upload speed of 1 Mbit/s. However, in some areas, the USO is consistently not being met, indicating that the infrastructure in these areas may need significant improvement.

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Using Ofcom’s Connected Nations 2020 report, we have found the local authorities in the UK with the best and worst average download speeds. We have also identified areas that have the lowest percentage of properties not meeting USO standards.