The Internet is evolving, and the global average Internet speed has increased from 2.3 megabits per second (mbps) in 2011 to 18.4 mbps in 2013. Worldwide, the “need for speed” grows competitively as advancing e-commerce opportunities, cloud technologies, mobile computing, and service-based hosted platforms continue to improve. Consumers and business owners compete like never before because of fast Internet connectivity and its high availability. Internet Service Providers (ISPs) are doing their best to accommodate the demand for smaller, better and faster technologies that improve business communications and customer services.
World’s Fastest Internet: Global Speed Comparisons
Hong Kong tops the list for the fastest internet in the world with Internet connection speeds at an impressive 63.6 mbps, notes Akamai. Japan and Romania compete for second and third place at 50 and 47.9. Does it feel like time to check your satellite Internet connection? High-speed fiber optics is typically the technology behind incredible speed. South Korea, with the country’s high-tech niche in consumer and home electronics, ranks fourth at 44.8 mbps. Latvia and Singapore rank underneath South Korea. While the U.S. is not in the top 10, it does fall into eleventh place, improving its fourteenth place in recent months.
Urban vs. Rural
If you live in a thriving metropolis, let’s face it, your accessibility to superfast Internet is greater. Options for high-speed Internet connectivity are still developing in rural communities and sprawling farmlands. HughesNet Satellite Internet confirms that living in rural areas reduces options for connectivity.
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A July 2013 article by the Congressional Research Service explains that there is a digital divide, or a gap, between Americans who use telecommunications and technologies and those who don’t. High-speed Internet access, such as broadband, becomes a concern. Broadband uses cable, fiber, phone wire, satellite, or wireless to communicate faster than the archaic phone dial-up method. Urban or high-income area broadband deployment rates are higher than that of rural or low-income areas.
The reality is that high speed Internet is available, but not everyone is catching on. In a March 18, 2013, article by DigitalTrends, the FCC reports that nearly 19 million Americans live where no broadband service is available. Research indicates that broadband is available to 100 million people, but they don’t subscribe. America lags behind in terms of global Internet speeds — and not for reasons of cost. Why are Americans not joining the rest of the world for improved connectivity?
- 12 percent of those who did not subscribe claimed it was because they did not have computers
- 10 percent said it was too expensive
- 9 percent said it was too difficult
- 7 percent said it was time-wasting
- 6 percent claimed they did not have high-speed Internet access
Mobile devices, cloud technologies and e-commerce drives Internet speeds. Subsequently, service providers strive to improve connectivity and security. New technology will likely drive costs down and availability up, as the need for speed continues.