UK’s drop in global speed table highlights need for alternative broadband solutions

11th July 2018

The scale of the need for alternative broadband in the UK was highlighted by the news that the UK has slipped to 35th place in an annual league table of global broadband speeds, behind digital titans Jersey and Latvia.

New data from research group M-Lab and has revealed that for the 12 months to 29 May 2018, the UK delivered an average broadband download speed of just 18.57Mbps (up from 16.51Mbps in 2017).

At present it’s estimated that around 5% of UK premises are outside the reach of a fixed “superfast broadband” (24Mbps+) service, which places the UK behind EU countries including Malta, Belgium, Portugal and Luxembourg. Despite an increase in cable and fibre optic connections, currently around 45% of home broadband lines in the UK are still connecting through slow pure copper ADSL services.

For those in the forgotten 5%, bigblu focuses on delivering super-fast broadband to homes and businesses outside the fibre footprint. We do this with a portfolio of satellite and fixed wireless super-fast broadband offerings as well as with 4G. For some remote customers this means harnessing abundant satellite capacity in the sky. We also deploy the latest generation radio technology to extend the fibre network into areas where fibre hasn’t reached.

The UK government remains vague on how it intends to meet the main ‘Connectivity’ target set by the EU’s Digital Agenda for Europe

The M-Lab research has been collected through 160 million speed tests across 200 countries. The analysis revealed Singapore was once again the world’s fastest country, followed by Sweden, Denmark and Norway, while Yemen came last.

Earlier this year the UK government declared it had delivered on its promise to extend “superfast” broadband to 95% of homes – but has remained vague at best on how it intends to meet the main ‘Connectivity’ target set by the EU’s Digital Agenda for Europe (DAE), which called for every home to gain access to a 30Mbps+ capable Next Generation Access (NGA) broadband connection by the year 2020. And, the company that compiled the data, claimed Britain was likely to fall further behind other countries over the coming years.

M-Lab's Worldwide Broadband Speed League

RankingCountryDownload speed (Mbps)Number of testsDownload time (for HD movie, 7.5GB)2017 positionSpeed change
1Singapore60.39524,01800:11:18No change+5.26
2Sweden46.00367,24100:14:50No change+5.84
3Denmark43.99150,52900:15:31Up 1 place+10.45
4Norway40.1286,92000:17:01Up 3 places+10.99
5Romania38.60175,94800:17:41Up 13 places+17.27
6Belgium36.71174,25900:18:36Up 2 places+9.34
7Netherlands35.951,247,69400:18:59Down 2 places+2.43
8Luxembourg35.1419,07100:19:26Up 25 places+19.62
9Hungary34.01352,74500:20:04Up 6 places+10.85
10Jersey30.909,16500:22:06Up 4 places+7.60
35UK18.5714,701,50500:36:46Down 4 places+2.06

Click here for the full table and analytics from M-Labs and

Bigblu is rising to the challenge. For example, our fixed wireless broadband services use radio to deliver an ultra-fast broadband service to communities where population density and funding is optimal for this technology. Using a mixture of licensed and unlicensed radio spectrum we can deliver ultra-fast broadband at 75+ Mbps with unlimited data allowances and very low latency.

We also use the latest 4G network infrastructure, where we cover 98% of the UK, to deliver a defined super-fast broadband product where the networks allow. With our 4G plans we can offer average download speeds of 20 Mbps, putting us ahead of the national average.

For those who live or work where telecoms infrastructure is poor, like in rural areas or where fibre is too expensive to lay, our satellite broadband technology is ideal. We can connect you to one of our satellites with download speeds of up to 30 Mbps.

So, despite the latest tale of woe from the annual league table of global broadband speeds, there is no need to suffer slow or no broadband. If you are on of the ones who feel they are being left behind in the digital world then get in touch and bigblu will get you all caught up.