The speed of your broadband internet connection has never been more critical. It’s the pipe that connects your computers, tablets, smartphones, even your entertainment systems and home automation tools, to the outside world—and to each other. Your connection must handle content that is critical for work, play, and keeping in touch. It has to back your modern day communications, from simple text up to voice calls and even video conferencing. And of course gaming; without the internet, your gaming would be almost entirely lonely, single-player action.
The internet service providers (or ISPs), the companies that bring the high-speed broadband connections to your door step, have increased speeds in the last few years. Competition is helping even more. Local ISPs have pushed the big-name companies to raise speeds while keeping costs affordable.
Yet despite the competition and the claims, the average speeds in the US are not even close to the averages seen in many other nations. The USA typically fall well behind around 120 nations.
In a 2010 report released by Cisco and Oxford University that ranks countrywide broadband quality around the world, South Korea has the best broadband service in the world, with an average download throughput of 33.5 megabits per second – nearly three times the speed of second-place Hong Kong – an average upload throughput of 17 megabits per second – more than twice that of Hong Kong, and has 100 percent broadband penetration.