Networks

UK ‘Not Bad’ At 63rd In World’s Cheapest Broadband League Tables

Matt Broersma is a long standing tech freelance, who has worked for Ziff-Davis, ZDnet and other leading publications

Follow on: Google +

Meanwhile, Burkina Faso tops the list of the most expensive offerings at nearly $1,000 a month – giving users access to the world’s third-slowest speeds

The UK has the world’s 63rd cheapest broadband service, with consumers paying an average of $43 (£32) per month, more than many of Western Europe’s 28 countries, but far less than individuals in sub-Saharan Africa, where prices well above $100 per month are routine, a new study has found.

Almost all of the 31 sub-Saharan African countries were in the most expensive half of league tables compiled by price comparison service cable.co.uk, with 16 in the most expensive quarter and Burkina Faso topping the worldwide list with an average price of $954.54.

For that price users are granted access to an ADSL network that offers the world’s third-slowest broadband, running at 0.49Mbps according to cable.co.uk figures published in August. Only Gabon, with 0.41 Mbps, and Yemen, with 0.34 Mbps, were slower.packetfront

Within the same region, Angola, Gabon, Mali, Namibia, Niger, Somalia, Tanzania and Zimbabwe all charged more than $100 per month for broadband.

Competitive rates

The figures, based on data collected by BDRC Continental, show the UK isn’t in a bad position, placing in both the top-third fastest and top-third cheapest globally, cable.co.uk said.

“With a healthy, open marketplace offering very cheap broadband deals to everyone, and so-called ‘superfast’ speeds to almost 96 percent of homes, the UK is doing considerably better than the majority of countries around the world,” stated cable.co.uk analyst Dan Howdle.

The UK was 8th cheapest in Western Europe, with Italy the cheapest, at an average of $28.89, followed by Germany at $34.07, Denmark at $35.90 and France at $36.34.

But it offered lower average prices than most other English-speaking countries, with users in Australia, Canada, Ireland, New Zealand, South Africa and the US all paying more for broadband.

Price disparity

The results show wide disparity in broadband pricing worldwide, with the Middle East, for instance, offering both the world’s cheapest broadband (in Iran, at an average of $5.37 per month, as well as much more expensive offerings in neighbouring Saudi Arabia, at $84.03, and the United Arab Emirates, at $155.17.

Former Soviet Union countries tended to offer broadband on the cheaper end of the scale, with Russia and Ukraine users paying just under $10 per month and users in Belarus, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Latvia, Moldova and Tajikistan paying an average of less than $20, while Oceania was dominated by extremely high prices, including average rates in Vanuatu ($154), the Cook Islands ($174) and Papua New Guinea ($597).

The results show there is no single, ideal model to follow where it comes to broadband infrastructure, cable.co.uk said.

“Our data demonstrates that when it comes to broadband, both the national marketplace and the infrastructure that underpins it are imperfect no matter where you live,” Howdle stated.

BDRC and cable.co.uk collected and analysed data on more than 3,351 broadband packages in 196 countries between 18 August and 12 October of this year.

Do you know all about broadband and the ultra-fast future? Try our quiz!