Broadband users receive just 48% of advertised speed

The latest study of 41,230 broadband connections over February and March 2008 from comparison site 'Broadband-Expert' has revealed that consumers typically receive just 48% of the advertised download speed.

The average speed achieved in the 16Mbps+ category was a relatively low 8.6Mbps (45% of the quoted maximum). By comparison customers on 2Mbps packages achieved on average 1.8Mbps (88%) and customers on 8Mbps achieved 3.4Mbps (43%).

The average speeds achieved by broadband users varied hugely between providers and packages. In the 2Mbps category top performers were Virgin Media’s cable service, Talk Talk and UK Online, all of which achieved slightly more than the advertised maximum 2Mbps speed. Even the lowest performers Tiscali, Pipex and Toucan achieved 68%, 70% and 73% respectively.

The biggest variations were in the 8Mbps category where O2 and Be achieved 73% and 68% of advertised speeds, compared to just 26% for Toucan and 29% for both Virgin Media’s ADSL service and Eclipse.

The fastest actual speed achieved in the 16Mbps+ category was Virgin Media’s cable service with an average of 10.4Mbps or 52% of the 20Mbps quoted top speed. The only other ISP to deliver more than 50% of the advertised maximum speed was UK Online which achieved 62% of the 16Mbps quoted top speed, delivering an average of 9.99Mbps.

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