Streets in slow lane where TV down­load takes 8 hours

The Daily Telegraph - - News - By Olivia Rudgard SO­CIAL AF­FAIRS COR­RE­SPON­DENT

BRI­TAIN’S worst broad­band street has been re­vealed as ex­perts say its slow in­ter­net would mean it could take eight hours to down­load a 45-minute TV pro­gramme.

The UK’S worst street has been named as Thorpe Lane in Trim­ley St Martin, Suf­folk, where the in­ter­net is 260 times slower than in the fastest street – Ben­ford Av­enue, Mother­well, North La­nark­shire.

Com­par­i­son site uswitch.com found that down­load­ing a two-hour HD film on Net­flix on Thorpe Lane would take 21 hours, while a 45-minute HD TV show would take nearly eight hours, at speeds of 0.68 megabits per sec­ond (Mbps). By con­trast in the fastest street, av­er­age speeds peaked at 177.01Mbps over the past year, mean­ing the twohour film would take less than five min­utes to down­load and the TV pro­gramme just 109 sec­onds.

The data is based on anal­y­sis of more than a mil­lion real-world sit­u­a­tions where users were us­ing their in­ter­net to watch movies or TV.

The Daily Tele­graph has been cam­paign­ing for bet­ter ac­cess to broad­band in ru­ral areas by high­light­ing the prob­lems caused to fam­i­lies and busi­nesses by slow in­ter­net speeds.

The uswitch re­search also shows that one in five broad­band users have speeds of less than 10Mbps – while nearly 1 in 10 has in­ter­net at speeds of less than 5Mbps.

Reg­u­la­tor Of­com has pre­vi­ously said that 10Mbps is the min­i­mum needed to meet the needs of a typical house­hold.

Four of the top 20 fastest streets were in Lon­don, with an­other two in Glas­gow and one in Greater Manch­ester. How­ever, some of the fastest places are very close to streets with slow in­ter­net speeds. Red Wil­low in Har­low, Es­sex, is less than 40 min­utes from Noak Hill Road in Bil­ler­icay, but has speeds that are 143 times faster.

On more than two thirds of the UK’S 30 slow­est streets, fi­bre broad­band is avail­able, sug­gest­ing that the providers them­selves could be the is­sue.

The num­ber of peo­ple who can ac­cess faster broad­band is grow­ing, with 36 per cent of peo­ple us­ing av­er­age speeds of 30Mbps or more, an in­crease from 22per cent two years ago.

The Gov­ern­ment has pledged to give 95per cent of house­holds ac­cess to fi­bre broad­band at 24Mbps or faster by the end of the year. In Septem­ber it said it was on track to meet this goal.

Ewan Tay­lor-gib­son, broad­band ex­pert at uswitch.com, said: “Rea­sons for such slug­gish broad­band speeds can vary and can in­clude a user’s dis­tance from the near­est ex­change or dif­fi­cul­ties with the prop­erty it­self – thick­ness of walls, for ex­am­ple, can af­fect wire­less con­nec­tions.”

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