State of the Internet Down Under?
Life in the slowish lane
A quiet suburban town 18km away from Sydney with no CBD to speak of called Riverwood boasts Australia’s fastest average broadband speeds at 5.8Mbps, but according to Akamai’s latest ‘State of the Internet’ report this is a rare treat.
With only 12 per cent of its internet users enjoying speeds higher than 5Mbps, Australia has managed to keep itself out of the upper end of any Akamai’s top charting metrics.
According to the latest edition of the Akamai report, the average Australian internet connection speed is 2.9Mbps, near the bottom rung compared to neighbours Hong Kong (who enjoy 9.2Mbps), Singapore (3.3Mbps), South Korea (14Mbps) and Taiwan at 5Mbps.
Overall, Australia ranks as 48th fastest, lagging behind our smaller across the ditch cohort New Zealand which dropped slightly in the ranks, coming in at 41.
Cities in Asia again continue to dominate the top fast 100 list, once again accounting for three-quarters of the list, with 61 cities in Japan and 13 cities in South Korea and Hong Kong.
Given the ensuing battle to get a National Broadband Network off the ground in Australia (with New Zealand working on its own UFB, or Ultra-Fast Broadband initiaive), the stats speak of a significant competitive geographical digital divide.
Akamai reported over 533 million unique IP addresses, from 235 countries/regions connecting to the Akamai network during Q3. Australia claims over 9.3 million of these unique IP addresses, a 6.1% increase from Q2. New Zealand stakes claim to over 1.4 million new addresses representing a 5.4 per cent improvement since last quarter. ®
Vast empty spaces
Won't be a problem one we get our NBN.
Once the National Broadband Network finally gets off the ground we'll be a bit faster.
Bundled with that, will be the Great Australian Firewall that will so heavily restrict everything, that the only traffic that will actually pass through it will be either news sites and their Policially Biased Claptrap, or IPTV sites that give more airtime to the latest [insert body part here] fat buster, than they do to quality programming material such as exiting game shows, more celebrity cooking shows, and a wide variety of brilliant american programming.
It is worth remembering though that nearly 13.5m of the 21m population live in just 5 cities and that in these cities (and plenty of other urbanised areas) fast speeds are available via cable. I have the choice in one of those cities of a cable connection (17Mb/1Mb) for $70/mth or ADSL (~2Mb/0.5Mb due to distance from exchange) for considerably less per month. Maybe the connection speed for many (not ones in tiddly towns) is a function of uncompetitive pricing as much as geography, after all anyone in my area could be either 2Mb or 17Mb depending on what they want to fork out? That's a big difference.
The politicians are remarkably dumb-arsed though.