Ofcom: UK broadband speed on the up as punters' packages swell
More of a shunt than a glide
Average broadband speeds in Blighty are on the up, communications watchdog Ofcom concluded in a report published this morning.
Of course, some might argue that it's impossible to define a national average given the disparity of broadband network connections across the UK.
Ofcom said that as of November last year, the country's average actual residential broadband speed stood at 7.6Mbit/s, compared with 6.2Mbit/s a year earlier.
Much of the increase was attributed to punters beefing up their packages by subscribing to faster broadband speeds with their providers.
The regulator added that 58 per cent of UK residential broadband connections had an "advertised speed of above 10Mbit/s".
That also means that 4 in every 10 broadband customers are still in the slow lane with their net connections, with speeds of 10Mbit/s or less.
Ofcom found that Virgin Media's fibre-based "up to" 50Mbit/s package had average download speeds of around 49Mbit/s, while BT's Infinity product recorded average download speeds of around 36Mbit/s. Infinity also had the highest average upload speed of all the ISPs – at 8.8Mbit/s.
“It is encouraging that speeds are increasing and that consumers have a real choice of broadband service. There is a real opportunity for consumers to look at the packages and deals in their area in order to receive the best value, speeds and performance available to them," said Ofcom boss Ed Richards.
“We can look forward to further increases in UK broadband speeds over the next few years. Most households in the UK can now access superfast broadband services, and these services are set to get faster still as Virgin Media aims to double the speeds of most of its cable services and BT aims to double the speed of its fibre-to-the-cabinet service from 40Mbit/s to 80Mbit/s.”
Richards had previously warned of low interest in "superfast" broadband in the UK.
As recently as November last year he said that cash-strapped customers lacked incentive from ISPs to upgrade their broadband packages to a speedier product.
You can drill down into Ofcom's latest numbers here. ®
Oh fuck off
This is all well and good, giving people who already have fibre higher speed.
What about us that are stuck on the end of a 6-mile length of copper? Us that get 1mbps on a good day, but usually .3-.5?
All I ever see in the news is BT rolling out fibre to all and sundry (when really, they are "rolling out" to the exchanges, after which only 40% of those get it to their cab. Those people usually already had fibre from Virgin). Virgin increases their speeds, so it is possible to get over 100mbps if you wanna pay for it. Guess what? I would gladly pay for it. But there is no high-speed broadband anywhere on the horizon for people in my area, a communications not-spot in the middle of a city full of fibre.
Maybe focus on getting everyone up to something like 5mbps before you try and play catch-up with the rest of the West, climbing to three figures.
7Mb/s I wish
I'd be happy with the 'expected' 6Mb/s that I should get rather than the 2.5 I typically get. Oh and for the connection to not drop all the bloody time (3 ISPs and numerous routers have show it's BTs problem)! No I don't live in the sticks, but in West London, however I'm stuck 2 miles form the exchange, Oh and copper? Our line is Al, as witnessed when the phone stopped working not long after we moved in and the engineer who came to look, almost burst out laughing when he saw the state of the line.
I hardly watch the TV, so whilst nice Mr Branson may sell me a fast connection, he also charges me for a whole load of stuff I don't want/need.
My mother gets 3.5Mbit/sec and is on Orange because it is free, she doesn't need much more and as a pensioner she can't justify spending more money to move to a better ISP who might provide better overall performance.
I'm on Virgin 30Mbit/sec getting 26Mbit/sec and even if I am technology focused I don't see the need to upgrade further. If anything I would like more upload than I currently have and I would pay for that.