Broadband speed tests have been conducted across 42 UK cities, revealing that almost half of all residents are using connections with an average speed slower than 24Mbps – the point regarded as the start of ‘superfast’ speeds.
The testing was conducted by comparison site uSwitch, and found that the city with the lowest average speed was Hull with just 12.4Mbps, while even London users were below the ‘superfast’ rating with an average speed of 22.4Mbps.
Middlesbrough, Belfast and Brighton were the top three cities, with average speeds of 34.4, 34.3 and 33.8Mbps respectively.
The cities with the lowest average broadband speeds after Hull were Aberdeen with 15.6Mbps and Milton Keynes with 17.1Mbps.
It should be made clear that services offering faster speeds may be available in these cities, but the figures represent the actual average speeds people are using in each location.
The government has stated that superfast broadband is available to around 90% of UK homes and businesses now, and further funding has been pledged to increase the total to 95% by 2017.
BT has said that its fibre-based services are available to 24 million homes, but only 22% of these are using the fast connections at the moment.
Although some broadband users want the fastest speeds, many people are still happy with lower download rates as long as they can browse the web, send emails and watch the occasional programme via catch-up TV services.
Faster services can also cost significantly more than those offering lower speeds.
uSwitch’s Ewan Taylor-Gibson commented: “We should be asking what more can be done to encourage the adoption of superfast broadband, now it’s so widely available.
“The UK’s towns and cities should be leading the charge when it comes to broadband speeds, yet just 22 cities have broadband users with average speeds of more than 24Mbps.”
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