Ookla, the company behind Speedtest, released its report analysing the changes in world internet performance. According to the Speedtest Global Index released for the period from July 2017 to July 2019, the world mobile speed increased 21.4 per cent from 22.81 Mbps to 27.69 Mbps and the broadband increased 37.4 per cent from 46.8 Mbps to 63.85 Mbps.
Indian internet speeds registered an increase of 16.3 per cent in mobile speeds and 28.5 per cent increase in fixed-broadband speeds. However, the country still lags behind the world with a below than average internet speed. Likewise, Russian internet speeds also lag behind the world average despite a 15.7 per cent increase in mobile speeds and 40.9 per cent increase in fixed speeds.
The index found out that the mobile speeds in some countries have skyrocketed in the past year. South Korea, which was not even in the top ten in the list of ‘fastest countries for mobile internet’, reached the top this year with a growth of 165.9 per cent in mean download speed, courtesy of 5G rollout in the country.
The second spot on the list is held by Australia with a growth of 21.2 per cent in mean download speed, and Qatar slipped to the third spot from previous year’s first position with a drop of 1.4 per cent in speed. Switzerland also benefitted from 5G as it registered a growth of 23.5 per cent to enter the top 10 list this year. Canada (+22.2 per cent), Netherlands (+17.3 per cent), Malta (+10.3 per cent), Singapore, and Norway (+5.8 per cent) continue to stay in the top 10 list.
Although South Korea became the country with the fastest mobile internet speed in the world with 5G rollout, the report notices that wide availability of 5G is necessary to change a country’s mean download speeds. While Switzerland got the commercial 5G in April 2019, the country’s mean speed increased only 2.8 per cent. In the case of the US, since 5G was deployed, its mean download speed actually declined because it is available only to a limited number of markets.
In the list of “fastest countries for fixed broadband internet”, Singapore retains its top spot from the previous year as the country with the fastest broadband speed. The fixed broadband internet speed has not changed much in the past year. The largest jump is made by Taiwan to enter the top 10 list, which amounts to an increase of 166.5 per cent.
The report mentions that gigabit fiber connections can be game-changer and geographically small countries like Singapore have an advantage here as it’s easier and cheaper to lay fiber optic cables.
Continent-wise Asia registered the highest increase of 27.2 per cent in mobile internet speeds followed by North America with 25.4 per cent growth, whereas South America registered the highest increase of 60.9 per cent in fixed internet speeds followed by Asia with 51.8 per cent growth.