American Internet Connection Speeds Lag Western World

August 8, 2013 - 2 minutes read

slow internet speed

Being slow, falling behind, and lacking innovation may be traits commonly reserved for failed states in Sub-Saharan Africa, yet in a shocking report on global internet speeds, the United States ranked at an embarrassingly low 28th place in the developed world.

According to a news article published by USA Today, “A recent analysis by the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) ranked the U.S. 23rd in a measure of price per second of downloaded content. A separate survey by metrics service Ookla put U.S. download speeds at 28th worldwide.”

It doesn’t take an expert to see that internet connectivity is an irreplaceable part of daily life. Subsequently, your internet speed correlates to business and personal productivity. Millions of people across the developed world in Asia, the Middle East, and Western Europe enjoy widespread access to high speed internet that is more than 10 times faster and runs half the cost.

As an iPhone app developer in San Francisco who depends upon internet access for a living it is infuriating how little progress has been made bringing high-speed internet access to the masses. Blame rests partially on the federal government for lacking vision and setting ineffective policies. The main culprits that have held back high-speed internet are the major telecoms — Verizon, Time Warner, Comcast, and AT&T. For years these bloated corporations have reported record profits, under-investing in infrastructure while concurrently hiking up rates.

Failures in policy and sweeping consolidation in the telecoms industry means that 80% of Americans have one option when it comes to choosing an internet provider. The iPad app developer community is counting down the days until the cabal of big operators are pushed out of town by Google Fiber. With connection speeds up to 100 times faster than average plans, Google is disrupting the stagnant telecom market by promising to bring high-speed internet to the masses at an affordable price.

Rest assured that when Google Fiber comes to town, Verizon will lose tens of thousands of customers overnight. You’ll find me first in line.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , ,