The news that the UK has the fastest mobile internet speeds in the world caught some of us by surprise. While we appreciated that 4G could be fast in certain areas, we though places such as San Francisco, Singapore or Tokyo would be faster. That’s apparently not the case according to the Q1 2016 State of the Internet Report.

The Q1 2016 State of the Internet Report by content provider Akamai, is an analysis of the internet and how we use it. It covers mobile internet speed and coverage, fixed line speed, IPv6 usage, IPv6 adoption and a whole lot more. If you’re looking for regions to expand and need information on connectivity, this is the report to read.

As part of its findings, it found that mobile networks in the UK currently enjoy the fastest mobile internet speeds of anywhere in the world. With an average speed of 27.9 Mbps, we are faster than Europe at 17.9 Mbps and the U.S. at only 5.1 Mbps.

Speeds were measured between mobile network proxies and Akamai’s servers. So while it doesn’t measure network to handset, it does give us an idea of the network speed and capacity as of Q1 2016.

This is great news for business and remote workers. While Britain is undergoing massive change, it’s good to see we are still leading the world in some things. Businesses are going to need every competitive advantage they can muster in order to get through the next few years and it looks like mobile broadband is certainly up to the task.

Lagging behind

We were surprised to see the US lagging so far behind in mobile broadband speed. While we may lament at the speed of the national 4G rollout, we cannot complain about the network speed once that rollout arrives. That 5.1 Mbps rate is the same as in countries like Turkey, Thailand and Kenya. Not where we thought the world’s largest economy would be.

Other European counties like Germany are still a little behind at 15.7 Mbps while France hit an average of 11.5 Mbps and Slovakia has 13.3 Mbps. Singapore, a place that usually leads the world in technology is way behind, with an average mobile speed of 6.7 Mbps.

The same report shows mobile internet speeds rising steadily across the board, with an average year-on-year increase of 23%. Data traffic is also increasing at quite a rate too. Data throughput was measured at 5000 petabytes per month in Q1 2016 as opposed to 3,500 this time last year. For interest, a petabyte is 1 million gigabytes of data.

Considering companies such as Vodafone are investing billions in their networks to improve speed, capacity and reliability, it is perhaps no surprise that we have an advantage in this area. However, we didn’t expect to place so highly. As a mobile business that supports other mobile businesses, we can’t help but smile at the advantage we have over other countries!

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