Despite how crucial the internet has become to modern life, there are still many people who either don’t have access to it or experience glacial speeds. We’ve rounded up 14 of the most interesting internet speed stats, along with trends in technology availability and types, to give you the best picture of the state of the internet.
Key points to remember:
- Internet speeds are increasing rapidly around the world, especially in wealthier countries.
- Hundreds of millions of internet users are added worldwide every year, with the majority of the world’s population now online.
- There is still a significant disparity in internet speed and availability between low-income and high-income countries.
If these stats pique your interest, be sure to check out some of the other entries in this series, such as online shopping, remote working, and cybersecurity stats. For now though, let’s start breaking down the facts about internet speed and availability.
The median global internet speed for fixed broadband connections in December 2021 was around 60 Mbps for downloads and 25 Mbps for uploads. Mobile was noticeably slower, on average, with medians of around 30 Mbps and 8.5 Mbps for uploads and downloads respectively .
Monaco had the highest median internet speed (192.68 Mbps) in January 2022 for fixed broadband connections. For mobile internet, the United Arab Emirates is the fastest with a median speed of 135.62 Mbps .
In a nutshell, 5G is the fifth (and final) generation technology standard for mobile internet networks.
Internet Usage and Internet Speed Statistics: Quick Overview
If you’re just looking for the juiciest stats and don’t want to scroll through the entire article, here are some of the more notable ones regarding internet speeds and usage.
- As of 2019, the majority of the world’s population has access to the Internet.
- The rate of Internet adoption varies from year to year, but new Internet users number in the hundreds of millions each year.
- The United States has the most widely available 5G mobile network, followed closely by the Netherlands.
- Fixed broadband connections are generally faster than mobile networks in most regions, with the exception of Africa.
Clearly, there are many interesting aspects to the development of Internet infrastructure around the world. Now that we’ve given you a little taster, let’s dive into our full list of stats, facts, and trends.
14 Internet Speed Statistics, Facts & Trends
We have grouped these statistics into three categories. We’ll start by looking at the facts directly related to internet speed, move on to availability trends, and then end with statistics related to the types of high-speed internet out there.
Internet speed in the world: Speeds by country
Let’s start by getting the ball rolling by taking a look at the stats you’re probably most interested in: those relating to internet speeds around the world.
1. What is the global average internet speed?
the global median internet speed in December 2021 was approximately 60 Mbps for download speed and 25 Mbps for upload speedsaccording to Ookla, which operates the world’s most popular speed test tool.
It only represents fixed broadband connectionshowever, as mobile networks are much slower on average, with median speeds of 30 Mbps download speed and Download at 8.5 Mbit/s speed.1
Global Median Internet Speeds*
*Dec. 2021, Mbps
2. How fast is the average download speed increasing globally?
Global internet speeds have increased rapidly over the past few years. In a July 2021 update, Ookla estimated that since 2017, the the global average speed has increased by 31.9% each year for fixed broadband and 59.5% for mobile networks.3
3. Which country has the fastest fixed Internet?
Monaco has the fastest median speed for fixed broadband connections at 192.68 Mbps.1
4. Which countries have the fastest mobile data?
If you rely on the median speed, the The United Arab Emirates has the fastest mobile data network with a median average of 135.62 Mbps.1
5. Where are internet speeds accelerating?
Internet connection speeds are accelerating and increasingly available around the world, but these improvements are not evenly distributed. Some regions are changing faster than others.
For fixed broadband, Asia and South America outpace all other regions by far, with an increase of 51.8% and 60.9% respectively between 2018 and 2019.
For mobile networks, Asia tops the list again at 27.2%, but North America was just behind at 25.4%.ten
6. Which US state has the fastest internet?
Although not technically a state, washington d.c. has the highest median internet speed in the United States with an almost exact 100 Mbps download speed and 15 Mbps upload speed.
Among the real states, New Jersey has the fastest internet speeds, comes first with 73.69 Mbps and 12.65 Mbps in download speeds and upload speeds, respectively.
Overall, the Northeastern states have a significant lead over other parts of the country, with the top five states/districts with the fastest internet speeds being: Washington DC, New Jersey, New York, Delaware, and Rhode Island .6
7. Which US state has the slowest internet?
The slowest median internet in the United States is in Mississippiat 28.05 Mbps for download speed and 4.74 Mbps for upload speed.
There is little regional consistency, however, as the final five states are all relatively far apart: Mississippi, Vermont, Wyoming, Nebraska, and West Virginia.6
Internet availability trends and statistics
Fast internet is great, but it’s no use if it’s not widely available. Next, we’ll go over some interesting statistics regarding the availability of high-speed internet around the world.
8. How many people have Internet access in the world?
According to the World Bank, 2019 was the first year in which it is estimated that more than half of the world’s population has access to the Internet, with Internet users represent 56.72% of the world’s population.
However, there is significant inequality in Internet access. The World Bank estimates that 89% of people in high-income countries had internet access in 2019, but only 53% in middle-income countries and 41% in lower-middle-income countries had access to it the same year.
There were no data for low-income countries in 2019, only 14% of people in low-income countries had internet access in 2017.7
Percentage of internet users worldwide
9. How many new Internet users are added each year?
For new internet users, 330 million new internet users were added between April 2020 and April 2021, according to DataReportal’s Global Statshot report. This represents an annual growth of 7.6%.8
10. Which countries have the most internet users?
The countries with the highest percentage of internet users are Denmark and the United Arab Emirates, both with a 99% adoption rate.8
11. Where is Internet access expanding fastest?
Given that high-speed Internet is near universal in high-income countries, it is perhaps unsurprising that developing countries are currently experiencing the strongest growth in the number of Internet users.
Internet use in the world’s least developed countries has increased by 20%, according to the International Telecommunications Union. the The Asia-Pacific region increased its Internet footprint by 23% in the same period of time.9
Internet connection type statistics
Not all internet connections are equal. In 2021, there have been major changes in the types of connections available.
12. Fixed broadband vs mobile data
Fixed broadband and mobile data represent two divergent strategies for improving Internet access and performance. In more developed regions like North America and Europe, mobile networks lag far behind fixed broadband, while in Africa the reverse is true.ten
13. Which countries are expanding 5G fastest?
In 2020, The Netherlands has the most expanded 5G networkwith over 50,000 new deployments.4
This is reflected in the overall availability of 5G in 2021, where the Netherlands ranks second, with 45.1% of the population having 5G. However, the United States occupies the first place, with almost half (49.2%) of the US population with access to 5G.5
Country for The fastest Median 5G download speed*
3rd quarter 2021, *Mbps
14. Is Internet fiber becoming more available?
Although there is little data on fiber optic internet in developing countries – where mobile internet accounts for the majority of growth – fiber is the fastest growing type of connection in the 38 member states of the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development.
In these developing countries, 32% of fixed broadband connections are now fiber opticagainst only 12% in 2011.2
Final Thoughts: Internet Speeds
With that, we’ve come to the end of our list of internet speed facts, statistics, and trends. I hope you have a better understanding of the reality of internet speeds and access around the world, despite the relative scarcity of reliable data.
What did you think of the statistics? Did anyone surprise you? What is your average download and upload speed in your region? Do you think we got it wrong or missed something interesting? Let us know in the comments below and, as always, thanks for reading.
- Ookla Speedtest Global Index
- OECD Broadband Statistics
- Ookla Internet Speed Update July 2021
- Illustration of Ookla 2020 5G data
- Ookla 5G 2021 Update
- Internet Index of Ookla in the United States
- world Bank
- April 2021 Digital Statistical Report
- ITU Digital Development Report 2021
- 2019 Ookla Global Index Report