Akamai spotlights ever-improving European broadband performance
Akamai, which styles itself as "a leading provider of cloud services for delivering, optimizing and securing online content and business applications" (content delivery network [CDN] specialist used to suffice) has released its Second Quarter, 2013 'State of the Internet Report'. It gathers, because it can, data on connection speeds, device types and so on, on a global basis.
There are no doubt lots of ways of measuring national Internet and broadband access performance, but something like this has to be one of the best. As Akamai itself boasts, its report can provide "insights into key global statistics such as network connectivity and connection speeds, attack traffic, and broadband adoption and availability, among many others."
Given the controversy around Europe's supposed catastrophic "falling behind" the US in both fixed and mobile broadband, this report and its stats paint a significantly different picture.
As we've pointed out before, the properly competitive parts of Europe deliver as good and often better broadband (mobile and fixed) connectivity and engagement as the US for much keener pricing. The performance average - of connection speeds - is dragged down by the southern European laggards, such as Spain, Portugal and Italy. Both Berec and the EU Competition Commissioner have pointed this out.
Not only this, but according to Akamai, European connection speeds are improving at a cracking pace right now (despite the tumbleweed-strewn broadband wasteland painted by the Information Commissoner). Akami's records show that both average and peak connection speeds are showing impressive year-over-year gains, while "quarter-over-quarter" growth was seen in nine of the top 10 countries/regions, with the largest increases being observed in European countries; the United Kingdom, Belgium, Ireland, Spain, France and Italy.. which... all demonstrated more than 10 per cent growth in average connection speed quarter-over-quarter."
Says the report... "This quarter the Netherlands (10.1 Mbps) joined Switzerland as the only other European country to achieve an average connection speed above the 10 Mbit/s ‘high broadband’ threshold, thanks to a 6.2 per cent quarter-over-quarter increase... while the United Kingdom achieved the largest year-over-year gain at 48 per cent (to 8.4 Mbit/s) and Sweden followed close behind with 44 per cent yearly growth (to 8.4 Mbit/s)." Other European countries also zoomed up the chart.
Download both full or summary reports here.
Or, much more fun and insightful, run your pointer or finger over Akami's State of the Internet Map visualisation.