How Do Our Broadband Speeds Compare To The Rest Of The World?

Ask the average Aussie to rank our nation's internet, and most will give a pretty damning assessment. The general consensus is that we pay too much money and receive slower speeds compared to the rest of the world. (Don't even get us started on the neutered NBN.) But is our internet really that bad? The following infographic compares global internet quality across a range of categories including speed, cost, censorship and ease of access. Australia's overall report card might surprise you...

Australian keyboard picture from Shutterstock

The below data was collected from a CPJ report focusing on internet censorship, as well as the Web Index findings for 2014 . As you can see, Australia didn't fair spectacularly when it comes to speed or cost, ranking 13th and 32nd in the world, respectively. That puts us behind most other developed nations, including New Zealand which managed to place an impressive speed ranking of 5th in the world.

Interestingly, Australia's universal internet access was ranked 12th worldwide. This suggests that more people can't afford home internet than you might think.

The countries with the worst internet censorship includes all the usual subjects, although you may be interested to know that Iran, China and North Korea all failed to take out the top spot (indeed, the latter two didn't even make the top five.) Instead, first place went to the State of Eritrea; a country in the Horn of Africa with one of the worst human rights records in the world. Kinda puts crummy internet speeds into perspective, doesn't it?

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    Ireland doing it right - top 5 speeds, and one of the cheapest; + Guinness.

      Rains a bit there though. But point well made.

    Can someone put these numbers into text for me - the infographic is taking forever to load!

      South Korea is number 1, NZ is number 5 and AUS is 16th in Internet speeds globally

    our bros across the ditch are doing so much better than us. most of the people I play rocket league with from NZ have FTTP or HFC 100mbit ,etc

      And a much smaller country to deal with.

        and a much smaller population to pay for it

          Sure, but these things are not linear.

          And they shag sheep

        New Zealand has a much much higher population density.

        NZ's population density = 16/km^2

        Australia's population density = 3.2/km^2

        Last edited 23/09/15 1:30 am

          Except that most of Australia's population is concentrated in major cities and we haven't even got those bits right!

            I think the problem lies in the fact that we put politicians in charge of the internet roll out.

      The big difference aside from critical infrastructure projects not being treated like a political football seems to be that rather than set up a company to run the new network like NBN, New Zealand instead tendered the fiber rollout to the various regional telcos and power companies (who have experience running and maintaining cables) and as a result they've managed to roll out FTTP far faster and cheaper than Australia.

      That said, geographically New Zealand is a tiny country where Australia is vast and thinly spread so you'd expect they could get a fiber network done faster and cheaper.

        We haven't even managed it in our cities where most of the population resides.

          Because we don't treat the cities as separate from the country, it's an integrated plan.

            Which I think of in the manner of a software project which completely fails in the 80% use case, and is thus a failure. Even the AARNET backbone for our research institutions is so underwhelming that researchers have to courier hard drives around the country.

    However, Australia has a higher level of urbanisation. And even when you *do* have to cover long distances, it's also much flatter.

    16th in the entire world for Broadband speeds and still people complain. Go team Australia.

    WTF is this "universal access", "relevant content", "freedom and openess", and "enpowerment" ratings suppose to mean? Did they just make all those up?

    And somehow those ratings manage to boost Australia's internet rating to 4th in Asia?? Give me a break. Australia and western countries tries to censors the net like crazy. I'm talking about the censorship you and I care about. They're literally fighting to bend over backwards to the copyright nazis from the US.

    In China you can get 3x the speed of Australia's shitty adsl2 connections for ~$5 a month, download anything you want and its unlimited to boot. Sure it censors some crappy propaganda sites that I never visit (eg like those falon gong religious nutjobs). But who actually cares?

    Since when has "not the worst in the world" been a valid excuse for providing a poor product or service?

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