Broadband News

UK broadband speed test results for March 2019

Lots to do since Q1 2019 has just finished but our usual monthly roundup of broadband packages speeds which we believe is the broadest analysis of observed speeds across the UK broadband scene available.

The normal domination of the top of the table by the Gigabit FTTP providers continues but Virgin Media continues to flirt with the top position though if the table was ordered by upload speed the situation would be very different.

In the next few days we will cover the technology splits for the UK, i.e. how popular different technologies were in the last quarter and the trends involved. For those wanting to look at broadband speeds across the UK independent for the various technologies one version of our broadband map shows speed test data split down into postcode area (e.g. DE) for the last quarter i.e. Q1 2019.

UK Broadband Providers and Services in March 2019
(Ordered by Median Download Speed)
Smaller providers without enough geographic data samples are not included
All speeds in Mega bits per second - Mbps
ProviderQualityDirectionSpeed of bottom 10%Speed of bottom 20%MedianMeanSpeed of Top 20%Speed of Top 10%
Hyperoptic GigabitA (0.4)Down 205 226.3 290.7 342 484.2 556.5
    Up 115.8 137.6 218.1 254.8 372.3 484.9
Gigaclear GO 900A (0.4)Down 202.7 232.3 264.5 276.3 321.7 394.4
    Up 73.6 172.1 217.1 256.1 261.5 533.8
Virgin Media VIVID 350B (0.9)Down 222.6 229.2 254.7 264.1 288.5 327.7
    Up 11.4 17.6 20.3 20.5 21.3 22.1
Community FibreB (0.8)Down 138.1 164 231.2 237.5 301.3 318.9
    Up 98.4 147.7 232.8 266.6 404.4 437.9
True Speed CommunicationsA (0.4)Down 143.9 168.7 193.5 205.9 234.7 261.6
    Up 57.6 85.2 211.3 231.5 393.2 435.1
Virgin Media VIVID 200A (0.7)Down 73.7 90.9 178.2 160.1 209.6 215
    Up 11 11.7 12.8 15.3 20.5 21.2
Gigaclear GO 200B (0.8)Down 102.3 106.5 135.9 135.7 163.9 174.1
    Up 84.4 91.2 129.2 126.6 148.9 163.1
BT Ultrafast 1 & 2 G.fastA (0.2)Down 95.9 102.3 126.9 149.3 198.7 261.3
    Up 19.6 25.4 28.2 29.8 36.7 44.3
Virgin Media VIVID 150A (0.7)Down 67.2 79.8 114 112.1 143.7 153.9
    Up 8.3 9.9 11.9 12.6 13.2 20.7
BT Ultrafast 1 & 2 FTTPA (0.3)Down 57.9 72.5 109.8 139.3 206.1 282.5
    Up 20.4 23.1 29.7 32.5 44.7 47.8
Vodafone Gigafast (all speeds)A (0.5)Down 58.9 78.5 106.7 168.3 296.7 361.1
    Up 27.7 35.9 58.8 71.5 78.5 101.2
TalkTalk UFO YorkA (0.3)Down 82.7 87 98.4 142.5 196.1 272.8
    Up 20.7 28.8 46.3 49.4 71.7 91.8
Zen Internet FTTPA (0.4)Down 28.6 37.2 90.4 112.2 164.9 234.6
    Up 8.7 10.1 20.1 30.4 31.6 45.8
KCOM Lightstream FTTP (all speeds)A (0.6)Down 19.1 32.5 79.2 113.3 185.4 271.1
    Up 4.6 6.9 19.8 23.8 31.7 33.1
Cerberus Networks FTTPA (0.3)Down 36.3 61 74.6 133.9 252.2 281.9
    Up 14.6 19.5 21 26.7 31.5 49.4
Hyperoptic 150 MbpsB (0.8)Down 18.4 27.5 69 75.2 134 160.7
    Up 8.1 18.1 44.1 61.8 107.8 160.7
Virgin Media VIVID 100A (0.4)Down 26.9 39 66.7 68.8 105.7 108.1
    Up 5.3 5.6 5.8 6.5 6.9 9.9
AAISP FTTC 80/20A (0.1)Down 35.8 43.4 63.7 58.9 72.8 73.9
    Up 7.9 10.3 16.1 14.6 17.9 18.2
BT Superfast 2 FTTP 80/20A (0.3)Down 38.5 43.8 63.2 58.6 72.4 73.5
    Up 11.7 14.8 19.4 17.9 21 21.3
Wessex InternetA (0.3)Down 20.7 30 62.9 75.9 102.5 106.1
    Up 4.7 6.5 9.8 19.5 18.1 23
IDNet FTTC 80/20A (0.3)Down 41.8 47.7 59.2 56.4 68 70.4
    Up 9.1 11.7 16 15.1 18.2 18.6
Zen Internet FTTC 80/20A (0.1)Down 34.1 39.1 55 53.7 69.9 73.2
    Up 9.5 11.8 16.3 15.3 18.3 18.5
BT Superfast 2 FTTC 80/20A (0.2)Down 36.6 42.7 53.8 53.7 67.3 71.1
    Up 10.1 11.7 16.5 15.3 18.2 18.6
Plusnet Fibre Extra FTTC 80/20A (0.3)Down 35 40.2 50.1 50.9 64.3 69.7
    Up 8 9.4 14.1 13.6 18 19.3
Gigaclear GO 100A (0.7)Down 17.9 21.9 49.9 50.1 77.4 92.2
    Up 12.1 17.5 40.2 43 63.8 89.6
Vodafone Superfast 2 FTTC 80/20A (0.3)Down 35.3 39.8 49.9 51.2 63.9 70.7
    Up 9.4 10.7 15.2 14.1 17.5 17.8
EE Fibre Plus FTTC 80/20E (2.5)Down 36.3 40.7 49.7 50.5 61.6 68.4
    Up 9.5 11.4 16.5 15.1 18.2 18.5
TalkTalk Fibre Plus FTTC 80/20A (0.2)Down 35.8 39 48.6 50.7 64.4 71.7
    Up 8.1 9.9 15.9 14.3 18.3 18.7
Virgin Media BusinessA (0.5)Down 6.2 17.3 48.4 75.4 99.3 168.1
    Up 1 3 15.1 33 51.1 71.7
Sky Fibre Max FTTC 80/20A (0.3)Down 32.9 38.5 47.3 48.3 60.4 67.1
    Up 9.7 11.1 16.2 14.9 18.2 18.4
Daisy Wholesale FTTC 80/20A (0.3)Down 19.1 28.3 45.7 46.3 68 71.9
    Up 9.5 10.8 16.1 14.9 18.2 18.4
Other Providers FTTC 80/20A (0.2)Down 18.8 29.1 45.1 46.8 68.1 73.3
    Up 7.1 9.7 15.1 13.9 18.1 18.7
OFNL, SeeTheLight FTTPA (0.7)Down 16.7 20 40.1 41.4 57.6 63.8
    Up 2.9 8.4 11.1 11.9 16.1 22.2
Sky GEA-FTTP (*)A (0.3)Down 18.4 25.6 36.9 44.8 58.3 86.2
    Up 2.4 5.1 9 11.4 18 18.4
Plusnet GEA-FTTP (**)A (0.2)Down 15.5 20.1 36.8 46.2 69.1 73.9
    Up 1.9 3 7.2 9.6 17.6 18.7
BT Superfast 1 FTTP 55/10A (0.5)Down 14 21.5 35.4 33.9 48.7 50.6
    Up 3.5 4.8 8.6 7.6 10.1 10.3
Virgin Media VIVID 70B (0.9)Down 12.4 16 31.5 34.9 54.5 68
    Up 3.6 3.9 4.7 4.5 5.2 5.4
Post Office FTTC 40/10A (0.3)Down 14.7 19.5 30.1 27.8 36.9 37.3
    Up 3.8 5.2 8.1 7 8.8 9
Zen Internet FTTC 40/10A (0.3)Down 10.5 16.5 28 25.8 35.6 36.9
    Up 2.5 3.9 6.5 6.2 8.6 9.1
BT Infinity 1 FTTC 55/10A (0.4)Down 12.4 16.7 27.9 27.9 38.6 45.3
    Up 2.4 3.5 5.4 5.6 8.1 8.8
EE Fibre FTTC 40/10D (1.8)Down 12.2 15.7 27 24.9 33.7 35.3
    Up 2.7 3.8 5.6 5.6 8 8.4
Plusnet Fibre FTTC 40/10A (0.5)Down 12.9 17.3 26.2 25.5 34.8 36.6
    Up 2.5 3.5 5.4 5.4 7.6 8.4
TalkTalk Fibre FTTC 40/10A (0.4)Down 10.8 15.7 25.7 24.8 35.3 37
    Up 2.6 3.5 5.5 5.6 8 8.5
Daisy Wholesale FTTC 40/10A (0.6)Down 9.8 14.6 25.3 24 34.6 36.5
    Up 2.4 4.2 7.7 6.7 9 9.1
Sky Fibre FTTC 40/10A (0.5)Down 10.8 15.5 25.1 23.9 32.6 35.5
    Up 2.5 3.6 5.5 5.5 7.6 8.4
Other Providers FTTC 40/10A (0.4)Down 7.5 12.6 23.1 22.8 34.3 36.8
    Up 1.9 2.9 5.7 5.8 8.6 8.9
EE Mobile 3G/4GC (1.5)Down 3.8 7.7 22.8 30.7 46.6 67.9
    Up 0.5 0.9 4.4 7.1 12.3 17.7
Virgin Media VIVID 50B (1.0)Down 2.8 6.1 19.7 24.2 46.6 53.9
    Up 0.8 1.2 2.3 2.1 3 3.1
Vodafone Mobile 3G/4GD (1.9)Down 3 5.6 14.1 23.2 34.1 53.3
    Up 0.6 1.1 3.3 5.6 10 13.8
Three Mobile 3G/4GC (1.2)Down 2 4.6 13.2 18.5 28.9 42.7
    Up 0.5 0.9 2.2 5.3 9.5 13.8
O2 WifiC (1.5)Down 3 3.9 11.5 15.9 23.6 31.8
    Up 0.3 0.7 2 4.1 5.3 11.1
O2 Mobile 3G/4GD (2.1)Down 2 3.7 10.7 15.3 24.6 34.8
    Up 0.5 0.9 2.1 4.5 7.4 12
Relish WirelessB (1.1)Down 0.7 1.9 8.4 13.1 25.9 32.1
    Up 0.8 1.2 1.7 2.7 4.9 5.9
BT WifiA (0.7)Down 1.5 3.3 7.8 9.7 9.2 14.2
    Up 0.4 0.6 2.2 4.5 7.6 8.7
Zen Internet ADSL/ADSL2+A (0.6)Down 1.5 2.4 6.9 8.3 14 16.9
    Up 0.3 0.4 0.6 0.6 0.8 0.9
Sky ADSL2+A (0.6)Down 1.5 2.7 6.5 7.6 12.6 15.5
    Up 0.3 0.4 0.6 0.6 0.8 1
TalKTalk Business ADSL2+A (0.5)Down 1 2.3 6.5 7.2 11.7 13.9
    Up 0.3 0.4 0.7 0.6 0.8 0.9
Daisy Wholesale ADSL/ADSL2+A (0.5)Down 1 2.1 6.2 7.3 13.1 15.3
    Up 0.3 0.3 0.6 0.6 0.9 1.0
EE ADSL/ADSL2+A (0.9)Down 0.8 1.8 6.1 7.1 11.9 15.6
    Up 0.3 0.4 0.7 0.7 0.9 1
Vodafone ADSL2+B (0.9)Down 0.8 2.2 6.1 7.4 12.4 15.5
    Up 0.3 0.4 0.7 0.7 0.9 1.1
Plusnet ADSL/ADSL2+A (0.7)Down 0.9 2 6 7.3 12.7 15.8
    Up 0.3 0.3 0.6 0.6 0.9 0.9
TalkTalk ADSL2+A (0.6)Down 1 2.1 5.9 6.9 11.7 14.6
    Up 0.3 0.4 0.6 0.6 0.7 0.8
BT ADSL/ADSL2+B (0.8)Down 0.8 1.9 5.2 6.7 11.7 15.3
    Up 0.3 0.3 0.6 0.6 0.8 1
Post Office ADSL/ADSL2+A (0.7)Down 1.2 2.1 5.2 6.4 10.1 13.7
    Up 0.3 0.3 0.6 0.6 0.8 1

(*) Sky is showing up with GEA-FTTP customers even though they don't promote a FTTP service yet. The locations of these tests look genuine and in a good number of cases are new build homes where FTTP is the only option. It seems likely that these are existing Sky customers who have moved into an FTTP area.

(**) Plusnet has ended its FTTP trial and has not launched a service, but we still see some of the old trial users testing.

NOTE: The most often asked question is why is a package ABC or provide DEF not showing and the usual answer is that we did not see enough testing from people identified as on that product or broadband provider.

For those not familiar with the quality score, this is a measure of the variance of the download speed during the course of the test, so those with low scores of 0.1 to 0.2 have very stable speeds, where as those scoring grades C and higher have wildly varying speeds during the course of the test. EE also scores oddly and this is due to some quirk of their hardware or network configuration that means people see a a very slow ramp up to the connections maximum speed, in terms of how the public would see this is web pages being slow to start loading but after things will speed up. Another way to think of the quality score is that for day to day web browsing a grade A connection even if half the speed of another service with a Grade C connection will often feel faster to use.

To give some idea of the spread of quality scores and therefore some more background on the unusually high values we see for EE customers the following table shows the range of scores for the 40/10 or 55/10 FTTC/VDSL2 services on a number of providers.

Comparison of Quality measurements on FTTC 40/10 and FTTC 55/10 services.
The quality score is lower the quicker a test reaches its average speed and the more stable the speed is during the test.
ISP PackageWorst 10%Worst 20%MedianTop 20%Top 10%
BT Superfast 1 FTTC 55/10 2.56 1.52 0.41 0.06 0.02
EE Fibre FTTC 40/10 4.04 3.14 1.81 0.61 0.23
Plusnet Fibre FTTC 40/10 2.79 1.65 0.46 0.08 0.03
Sky Fibre FTTC 40/10 2.57 1.46 0.48 0.11 0.04
TalkTalk Fibre FTTC 40/10 2.87 1.49 0.39 0.07 0.02
Zen Internet FTTC 40/10 2.85 1.67 0.29 0.04 0.01

As you can see EE service stands out as different across the full range of results we see and while it is possible that 99% of EE customers are testing using Wi-Fi versus a broader range of Ethernet and Wi-Fi for the other providers but if this was the case we would expect the score to be more random each month. The speeds at EE are generally stable once the test has been running for a few seconds as you can see in this example test that shows a very long ramp on the single download and the multiple download which is analysed for the quality score still shows the problem - that test scored 2.4 due to the time taken to reach the median speed. The impact of this behaviour will most likely be revealed to customers in that web pages may take time to assemble their constituent parts and if they used a neighbours connection with similar speeds but better quality score they would see how much snappier and fluid web browsing can be.

The fastest test in March was this 929 Mbps down, 143 Mbps up, quality 0.01 test where the single download hit a cap at 500 Mbps. As for the future of cable broadband speeds, this test from a German cable broadband connection shows download speeds that can spar with Gigabit full fibre. If you are worrying that these two really fast downloads show a slow upload and that our tester might be struggling for upload, don't panic, a Hyperoptic customer over IPv6 with 820 Mbps down and 947 Mbps up shows what can be achieved and Community Fibre using IPv4 698 Mbps down and 929 Mbps up and to end with a Vodafone Gigafast customer with 799 Mbps down and 902 Mbps up.

Comments

800/900 hmm if only...even if I was daft enough to pay my ISP won't give me that fast yet...not that I need it..

  • Croft12
  • 3 months ago

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