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UK’s average broadband speed is 12Mbps. Double figure download speeds for the masses?

The UK’s average broadband speed is 12Mbps according to Ofcom. A report released today shows that for the first time, the UK’s average download speed is above double figures. 

This shows both how far we’ve come since the likes of BT and Virgin Media started rolling out speed boosts across their networks and since the last report, which pinned the UK average download speed at around 9Mbps. A quick look at the figures also shows that despite these gains, we’re still way off seeing the average UK subscriber actually enjoying double-figure downloads. 

Ofcom’s report combines data collected in November 2012 and breaks down the speeds achieved by those on slower, mainly ADSL-based lines as well as those on ‘superfast’ FTTC (Fibre to the Cabinet) and Virgin Media cable. 

UK’s average broadband speed is 12Mbps, double figures hit for the first time

The average speed of those on lines providing speeds of 2Mbps-10Mbps got an average download speed of 4.4Mbps and those on connections promising top speeds between 10Mbps-30Mbps were getting on average 8.1Mbps. 

Those on the premium superfast lines promising 30Mbps or higher were racking up average download speeds of 44.6Mbps. This shows that while the overall UK average download speed is 12Mbps, most people will be getting speeds that are either a little under or head and shoulders above this mark. 

Ofcom figures suggest that the majority of people in the UK (77 per cent) are signed up to mid-level 10Mbps-30Mbps services, suggesting that most people will actually be getting around 8Mbps. 

UK’s average broadband speed is 12Mbps, double figures hit for the first time

Average upload speeds are up as well, with the UK average climbing to 1.4Mbps. As with download speeds, it’s clear that the expensive superfast packages are responsible for driving the averages up. 

Those on entry-level packages are getting uploads of 0.5Mbps on average. Mid-tier packages don’t fare much better, weighing with average upload speeds of 0.8Mbps. Those on the premier-class packages are lording it with average upload speeds of 5.7Mbps. 

This means that most people will be getting just under 1Mbps uploads on their packages, which is actually  fairly close to the overall UK average, especially when compared with download speeds.

Ofcom’s sampling methods mean that smaller ISPs like Hyperoptic, Gigaclear and Gigler, all of whom offer 1Gbps downloads, won’t be included in speed test results. So while these surveys are useful for giving us an idea of what to expect when we sign up for household name broadband, they don’t give us a totally accurate picture of the state of Broadband Britain.

As we did with the last set of results from Ofcom, we’ll be breaking down the figures for ADSL2+ and superfast broadband, taking a look at Ofcom’s findings in closer detail.


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