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Average broadband speed for England in 2014 was 24 Mbit/s

Staff Writer |
Where broadband and speed information are available, the average broadband speeds in the majority of rural area types are lower than speeds in urban areas.

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In 2014 the average broadband speed in rural hamlets & isolated dwellings in a sparse setting was 5 Mbit/s compared with 27 Mbit/s in major urban conurbations.

Speeds vary because it is harder for network operators to recoup the fixed costs necessary for upgrading exchanges and cabinets in rural areas, where there are lower population densities, and therefore fewer end subscribers.

The average broadband speed for England in 2014 was 24 Mbit/s.

Average rural speeds are more likely to be slower than those in urban areas because:

There is less superfast broadband in rural areas. We expect this to change as BDUK’s rural broadband programme progresses; and

Rural premises are typically further away from cabinets, with long copper line connections, leading to slower performance.

For a household with the average rural speed of 13 Mbit/s downloading a movie would take 8 minutes and 54 seconds, while for a household with the average urban speed of 26 Mbit/s it would take 4 minutes and 27 seconds assuming a movie size of 858MB.

The availability of broadband in rural areas is increasingly important for how businesses operate and hence for economic development, in addition to access to services and wider social activities.

Ofcom average speed data is provided by the main broadband providers and, due to the completeness of the older datasets, the granular level data is not comparable with data from previous years.

The 2014 area classifications are based on the latest RUC11, and as such, are not directly comparable with previous RUC01 based analysis.

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