In the past, we’ve taken a look at our fixed and mobile broadband services, their capacity and how NBN stacks up globally. While it’s still nowhere near world-leading, the average speeds delivered by NBN has improved in global standings while our mobile services have stepped up again.
Mobile Services are leading the chasing pack
Our mobile services have for some time been ranked in the top 10 for data speeds world wide. Now we’re seeing with the 5G rollout and continual improvement of coverage across major centres, that speed is steadily increasing. In comparison to 12 months ago, download speed has increased significantly.
It has not only increased in speed but our global ranking has jumped a number of spots to fifth, leading a tight pack chasing the top four. That top four though are seemingly out of reach for now with the download speed in Qatar at 108.44Mbps, over 20Mbps higher than our average speed.
Our fixed broadband is getting better, but there’s still a long way to go
12 months ago, our fixed broadband services ranked a lowly 65th globally and fell amongst some countries in a far lower socio-economic bracket than ourselves. Since then the speed being delivered in both down and upstream capacity have improved significantly from where we were and in comparison to other countries but we’re still ranked just 60th worldwide for fixed broadband services.
Despite the improvement, a number of contributing factors need to be considered in evaluating this average speed data with our fixed broadband services. Starting with the fact that we do have a significant number of households on low-speed plans: 25/5 or 50/20 both of which — at full capacity — are below, and reducing our national average. The mixed service delivery (being addressed by NBN Co) also plays a huge factor here with many users not able to obtain faster services.
If you’re after raw download speeds, the costs play a factor in obtaining them either through one of the NBN providers who can supply Gigabit connections or, 5G services to your home. That speed does come at a significant cost though. As already mentioned, we can get higher speeds as individuals in Australia with great benefit to our own functionality but it’s also important to note that this also suggests that compared to other countries the affordability of higher speeds in Australia isn’t great for the average consumer.
Where this leaves us is with our average speeds significantly behind to the world leaders in this area who boast between 2.8 times (Monaco in 10th global ranking) and 3.9 times the average speeds we have. It will be interesting to see if this changes across the coming 12 months with our “new normal” forcing people to spend more time at home and potentially spending more to get the higher speeds.
Data has been obtained from Ookla Speedtest’s global index for October 2020