UK broadband is among the slowest in Europe - report

Slovakia, Romania, Hungary all faster.

UK internet speeds are among the slowest in Europe, says a new report by IT company Akamai.

As reported by The Guardian, the UK currently sits in 16th place with an average connection speed of just 4.9 Mbps. In comparison, The Netherlands were top with 8.2, followed by Switzerland at 7.3.

The only countries below the UK were Portugal (4.8), Luxembourg (4.4), Poland (4.1), Italy (3.9), Spain (3.8), Greece (3.8) and France (3.7).

Globally, South Korea has the fastest internet, with average speeds of 17.5 Mbps. The USA sits at 5.8 and Japan at 9.1.

"Britain is being frozen out of the next industrial revolution," judged former BT chief technology officer Peter Cochrane.

"In terms of broadband, the UK is at the back of the pack. We're beaten by almost every other European country and Asia leaves us for dust."

And prospects for the future aren't too bright either. Whereas most European countries are replacing old copper networks with fibre optic cables piped straight to users' doorsteps, BT plans to lay fibre optics along streets but then connect to homes via the same sluggish copper cable.

That will limit speeds in the future to 80 Mbps, compared to 1000Mbps on full fibre optic networks.

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