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Yes, the internet is being slow: Australia ranked 50th in the world for ‘net speed

The internet is the backbone of the modern economy, and when the internet is fast, the country moves forward. But the latest State of the Internet report for the third quarter of 2016 from American web company Akamai makes Australia’s internet speeds look as stark as the red heart of the country.

The report, released on December 21 last year, documents that Australia’s average internet speed is a measly 9.4Mbps, way below the 25Mbps speeds that’s needed to be classified as a broadband nation.

Slow and low

A quarter of all the countries in the world – developed or developing – have faster networks, including our neighbours across the Tasman Sea. New Zealand – ranked 40th – still doesn’t qualify as for that ‘broadband nation’ badge, but does fare a little better at 11.3Mbps.

Topping the charts is South Korea, clocking up average speeds of 26.3Mbps, followed by Hong Kong, Norway, Sweden and Switzerland in the top five, and Latvia coming in at number 10.

In Asia-Pacific, Singapore, Japan, Taiwan and Thailand all outshine Australia’s performance.And to add salt to the wound, Australia’s year-on-year improvement is dismal, too – it was the second-lowest behind Japan which, it should be said, averages twice the internet connection speed as Australia.

And these rankings could well change in the coming years, with China gaining about 100 million new fibre-to-home connections this year and the Filipino government, a country with one of the lowest broadband speeds and adoption rates, now investing in wireless and fibre networks across the country.

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