The fourth quarter 2015 State of the Internet report by Akamai Technologies reiterated what most broadband users in India are already aware of. The country retains the dubious distinction for the lowest average broadband connection speed in the Asia-Pacific region at 2.8 mbps (up 36% over Q4 2014) and is ranked 114 globally. Just ahead of India is Philippines (3.2 mbps) and Vietnam (3.8 mbps). While India’s average broadband speed is half of the global average of 5.6 mbps (up 23% over the last year), South Korea with average speed at 26.7 mbps, up 20% over the last year (Q4, 2014) leads the world. The gap between India and South Korea widened from 18 mbps to 24 mbps over the year.
So much so, India’s peak speed at 21.2 mbps is lower than Korea’s average speed. Singapore retained the top spot for peak connection speed globally at 135.7 mbps. While India connectivity speed is bad, it is not that China has done too well. It is ranked 89 with an average speed of 4.1 mbps. While at least 20 countries have over 90% of their connections at over 4mbps, in India it is just 17% against China’s 41%. Surprisingly, India has 2.8% of the connections at speeds over 10mbps as opposed to 1.6% for China. Here too South Korea leads the world at 81%.
Each of the top 10 countries/regions saw double-digit growth in connections at speeds of 25 mbps. Globally 7.1% of the connections are at 25 mbps. Three APAC nations – South Korea, Japan and Hong Kong – are among the 10 nations with the most connections at 25 mbps or more. While South Korea leads with 37%, it is followed by Sweden (23%) Norway (21%), Latvia (18%) and Japan (17%).
The average page load time – the time it takes for a web page to load from the time a user clicks to till it loads completely – for a broadband connection in India was 3.9 seconds and for mobile 6.9 seconds. What the Akamai report shows is that despite the government’s push for Digital India, there’s much to be done as far as infrastructure is concerned before the country can be among global leaders in high-speed connectivity.
Much will depend on the quick roll-out of Bharat Net and availability of adequate spectrum for mobile service providers.