Hyperoptic who provide Gigabit fibre services to flats and apartments has reacted to the European Broadband Scorecard news.
"Whereas this news may seem encouraging, there are a number of problems with the findings. Firstly, the overall conclusion that the UK has the best broadband in Europe is highly questionable as broadband infrastructure in other European countries, especially in Scandinavia, is far superior to ours at the moment.
Also, there is a disconnect between these average speeds reports, with Ofcom now pitting it at 17.8Mbps while Akamai is measuring at just 9.1Mbps. The reason for this is because of the way the data is collated and measured; median and average speeds are confused – just because providers report they are increasing speeds it doesn’t mean that the consumer is able to receive it.
For example, many buildings that we have connected with Hyperoptic’s 1 Gbps broadband were on less than 5Mbps beforehand. If these poor speeds are still happening in urban centres then it’s hard to believe reports that the UK has the best broadband in Europe – there is a long way to go before we can give ourselves this accolade."Boris Ivanovic, Chairman and Founder of Hyperoptic, the UK’s leading provider of FTTH broadband
This is the joy of statistics and it certainly is the case that many European countries have faster broadband in a good number of areas, but generally where the UK is winning is the levels of FTTC services which can cover lots of properties relatively quickly and cheaply and a large cable footprint.
Ofcom with its insistence on only accepting speed tests from a particularly testing platform also means that until the EU mandated testing platform is rolled out fully will they not accept any comparisons hence the lack of speed data in the scorecard. Even then if each EU country rolls out just 2,000 testing boxes without lots of modelling and weighting it is not clear if the average that results will fit in with the collective experience. The mathematical science behind an average may be perfect, but if the testing strategy does not include regional providers, in addition to the major providers in each EU country it will just be an average showing what the incumbent and its big competitor are deploying.
We could rush out some statistics from our own speed tester, but we prefer to spend the time filtering the results and investigating the various blips where the median result can be massively lower than the mean. One reason for a high mean is the presence of operators like Hyperoptic, B4rn or Gigaclear in an area.