Global Internet speed up 20% in 2014, mobile traffic jumped by 54%

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By Larry Banks

According to Akamai’s quarterly State of the Internet Report for Q4 2014, global average connection speeds rose 20% year-over-year to 4.5 Mbps in Q4 2014. Mobile demand continues to grow at an unprecedented rate of 54% in the last year.

Internet speeds increased in 132 countries

The firm found that 132 countries had an increase in average connection speeds year-over-year, from 0.3% in Morocco (to 2.4 Mbps), to a 146% rise in Congo (to 1.3 Mbps). Ten countries saw their average connection speeds decrease, with losses from 1.7% (to 1.4 Mbps) in Paraguay, to 47% (to 1.0 Mbps) in Sudan.

The chart below shows that eight of the top ten countries or regions saw double digit percentage growth year-over-year, but only six saw growth quarter-over-quarter:

Akamai State of Internet

Global broadband adoption (which Akamai defines as anything over 4 Mbps) decreased slightly by 0.7% last quarter (but up 20% year-over-year) to fall to 59% penetration. Global ‘high broadband’ (10 Mbps and up) hit 24% penetration after a 2.9% increase over the previous quarter (and up 25% Y.O.Y.).

In 2010, the FCC in the US redefined broadband at 4 Mbps downstream, and even though Akamai has also stuck to that definition it also added the 10 Mbps threshold and more recently a 4K Readiness classification (which means 15 Mbps and up). In January, the FCC updated its broadband threshold to 25 Mbps, causing Akamai to rethink the reports going forward.

“Although the United States is just one country of many around the world working to improve Internet connectivity, in light of this update we will be reviewing how we define the metrics included in the report, as well how we present the data in future issues”, said David Belson, editor of the State of the Internet Report. This means that for Q1 2015, the data will be based on different definitions.

As per usual, Akamia also presented mobile traffic data collected by Ericsson, which operates in more than 180 countries and has a customer base of more than 1,000 networks. The volume of mobile data traffic jumped 54% year-over-year and grew 11% quarter-over-quarter:

Akamai State of Internet

Mobile voice traffic, on the other hand, is fairly flat, while mobile data is steadily growing. In Q4 2014, average connection speeds on the mobile networks surveyed ranged from a low of 1.0 Mbps to a high of 16.0 Mbps.

SOURCE: Akamai

Images Courtesy of DepositPhotos