average download speed in uk

Average download speed in UK

Average download speed  in the UK
Download speed is the pace at which data (websites, apps, music, etc.) is transferred to you.

The more bits per second you have, the faster you can download. This not only means you can download a file much quicker, but you will be able to stream higher quality video and audio. The connection will also be able to handle more simultaneous users.

For home broadband, the advertised download speeds for most providers range from an average of 10Mb to around 600Mb — impressive considering that not too long ago a 2Mb download speed was seen as cutting edge.

There are providers offering speeds of up to 1000Mb or more (which is known as gigabit broadband), but these currently have limited availability.


Download speed is the pace at which data (websites, apps, music, etc.) is transferred to you.

What broadband speed do I need and provided in the UK?

In the world of broadband, megabits are abstract. Though most of us understand the more megabits the faster the broadband.

few of us comprehend how that applies to our household. Is 10Mbps enough? What about 50? Or 100?

Broadband speed is measured in ‘megabits’, and most of us understand that the higher the speed.

the faster you can download files and the higher quality your streaming content will be.

What many people struggle with is how to apply average broadband speeds to the needs of their household.

so they can choose a broadband deal with an internet speed that is right for their requirements

The speed of your home broadband is important.

If it isn’t fast enough for the number of people you live with, and the things you do online, you’re likely to experience irritating delays and connection issues.

These will be worse when everyone tries to get online at the same time.

the broadband speed you will need.

Broadband users Type of broadband Speeds
1-2 people ADSL 10-11Mbps
3-4 people Fibre 30–60Mbps
5+ people Fibre 60-1000Mbps
Gamers or streamers Fibre 60-1000Mbps

the broadband speed you will need

For 1-2 people

If you live alone or with one other person who also uses the internet, and the most bandwidth (speed) intensive things you do online are internet shopping and browsing social media, it’s likely that your needs will be met by ADSL / standard broadband.

offering  ASDL or standard broadband by most UK providers and is often the cheapest broadband deal as it’s typically slower and a little less reliable than fibre and mobile broadband. It uses pre-existing BT copper phone lines to send and receive data, with a typical speed of around 10Mbps.

Despite being the cheapest option, standard broadband is perfectly adequate for a couple of light internet users, so there’s no need to pay over the odds for your connection.
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Households of 3-4 people

In a large household, while you may sit down and enjoy streaming movies and TV together on occasion.

it’s likely that at least some of the time. you’ll be in different parts of the house doing your own thing online.

The more people that use your broadband connection at any one time.

the more bandwidth (speed) you’ll need, especially if you’re streaming movies or downloading and using apps and games separately.

For a household of 3-4 people, an entry-level fibre-optic broadband package is usually a sensible choice – as long as nobody owns a 4K TV and streams in 4K UHD resolution, works regularly from home, or downloads games or large documents.

This type of broadband deal will typically offer a speed between 30-60Mbps.

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Some providers, like Virgin Media, offer much faster fibre broadband connections that go right up to 1000Mbps. Choosing a faster speed can help future proof your broadband usage, particularly.

if you have growing kids who are spending more and more time online.

If you or someone you live with might be switching to home working in the near future, it’s also a good idea to add a little extra broadband speed to accommodate this.

Households of 5 or more, or student sharers

If you have a larger than average family or live in shared student accommodation.

it’s highly likely there’ll be times each day when everyone wants to get online separately.

It’s also likely that along with a range of other devices.

someone in the household will stream content via an internet-ready smart TV, or a TV with a streaming box.

There may also be peak times when everyone wants to get online, usually between 4 pm and 8 pm when everyone has come home for the day.

In a busy household, you’ll want to make sure you have a reliable connection to avoid issues like buffering or slow-downloading games and documents.

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so aim for a fast fibre-optic broadband deal with an average speed of at least 63Mbps.

Some fibre optic deals now offer speeds of up to 900 or 1000Mbps (now available both from Virgin Media and also BT and Vodafone in limited areas).

Serious gamers and streamers

Judging broadband speed based only on how many people are in a household doesn’t always work, as one or two people in the household may use the internet much more than the others.

The likely culprits for using more than their fair share of the broadband are serious gamers, who often need to download huge files containing new games and updates, and 4K streamers who want to watch movies and TV to their 4K television via the likes of Netflix, Amazon, Apple TV, YouTube (consuming anything up to 40Mbps of your home broadband connection). Make sure you’ve allowed enough speed to stream all of your favourite shows with our guide to streaming speeds.

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As a general rule, you should add an extra 30Mbps of broadband provision for each person in your household that downloads games to a console, PC, or tablet, or who streams TV shows in 4Kor make sure that your broadband deal includes an average speed of at least 100Mbps to cover all bases.

bt-logoBest TV packages in all over uk

Do you need to switch to get faster broadband?

Not every broadband provider offers the same speeds – some providers will only let you choose between two different speeds, while others have four or five on offer. You may be able to get a faster connection by choosing a different provider. How fast a connection you’ll get also depends on where you live – unfortunately, the fastest speeds aren’t available everywhere. So before agonising over which speed to go for, it’s worth finding out which deals are available where you are – and how much they cost – using Which? Switch Broadband.

 switch to get faster broadband

Standard vs fibre broadband

Standard’ broadband packages in the UK use ADSL technology and so transmit data over the existing Openreach phone/copper network. This means standard broadband is widely available, though average download speeds are just 10-11 megabits per second (Mbps).

For context, a 10-11Mbps connection will take more than five minutes to download one episode of a TV show.

while faster connections can take seconds.

But the broadband speed you receive in your home can be far less than 10Mbps.

Check your broadband speed right now

if you live a long way from the nearest telephone exchange Standard broadband used to be the most popular type of connection.

but customers are increasingly moving to speedier options.

Super- and ultrafast packages use more efficient fibre optic cables to transmit data. This means they can reach much faster speeds, though they’re not available in all parts of the country.

broadband speed checker in the UK

If you feel standard broadband is adequate for you, use our standard broadband reviews to find the perfect package.

it’s worth keeping in mind that, while fibre broadband used to be pricier than standard broadband.

it is now competitively priced – and some faster fibre deals can be cheaper than standard broadband.
If you’re interested in fibre broadband, it’s worth noting that very few “fibre” packages actually offer a fibre connection from your house all the way through to the exchange.
Instead, the vast majority use fibre to connect the exchange to the cabinet in your street and then switch to the phone line for the final leg into your house. This type of connection – called Fibre to the Cabinet or FTTC – offers average speeds of between 63Mbps and 67Mbps. Compare these broadband deals using our fibre broadband reviews. Only a small proportion of houses – approximately 21% of homes in the UK – are able to receive pure fibre directly from the exchange (known as FTTH, Fibre to the Home, or FTTP, Fibre to the Premises) and hence can benefit from speeds of up to 1Gbps.

Go faster, on us – get 63 Mbps (average download speed)

The benefits of faster broadband speeds

speed and the fastest broadband providers in the UK are very important.

Fast speeds allow for quicker downloads, uninterrupted streaming and also help to reduce.

we have to know will the speed test results which show the fastest and slowest broadband providers in the UK.

the problems caused when different family members log on at the same time. They let you seamlessly enjoy services such as online radio, video-on-demand and catch-up TV at the same time, while fibre’s faster upload speeds also make life easier.

when you’re sharing photos online or making video calls for work.

As the table below illustrates, at its fastest the difference between downloading a film from a service such as iTunes is about 90 seconds for fibre optic vs around 20 minutes for ADSL.

A good fibre connection should put an end to any stuttering and buffering of on-demand TV, too.

What about ultrafast broadband?

A connection is generally considered ‘ultrafast’ if it’s 100Mbps or faster.

Some of the providers that use the Openreach network – such as BT and Vodafone – offer ultrafast connections, but only to customers in certain parts of the country.

Virgin Media is one major provider that doesn’t use the Openreach network.

Instead, it uses its own fibre optic cables to connect its street cabinets to the phone exchange and then uses coaxial cables to link the cabinet to customers’ homes.

speed and the fastest broadband providers in the UK are very important.

Coaxial cable is faster than standard phone lines, so most of Virgin Media’s deals are ultrafast. While it’s less widely available than Virgin Media, Hyperoptic is another provider with its own fibre network – it’s mainly available in apartment blocks in major centres. Find a speedy great-value package by browsing our ultrafast fibre broadband reviews.

Compare broadband packages speed

How accurate are broadband speeds?

Speed is clearly important. But the reality is that not all of us will get the average speeds that providers quote in their ads. That is because companies advertise average speeds available to at least 50% of customers at peak times – meaning the other 50% of customers could get lower speeds
and maybe the average download speed in the UK is the cause.

GROUP, Speed is clearly important.


Why should I be testing my broadband speed?

Here are 5 great reasons to be testing your broadband speed:

  1. for check that your broadband provider is giving you the speeds they should
  2. To see if your broadband speeds vary at different times of day
  3. To see if there are faster providers and deals available in your area
  4. for comparing your speeds with those of your friends and neighbours
  5. Your test results will help us compile our monthly speed test results which show the fastest and slowest broadband providers in the UK, maybe the average download speed in the UK has acted on this.

How does the speed test work?

to get the best average download speed in UK wet have to make the right speed test.

Unlike many speed test providers. our test doesn’t require Flash and will instead run on any recent web browser with JavaScript. including tablets such as the iPad, Galaxy Tab, Google Nexus, or Kindle Fire.

You can even test your speed on a mobile phone without installing any apps.

We’ve tested on a range of smartphones including iPhones, Android phones like Samsung Galaxy S4, Moto G, and HTC One, and recent Windows Phone devices like the Nokia Lumia 630.

The test sends a small amount of data to your browser to get a rough idea of how fast your connection is and to measure latency (how quickly transfers begin).
based on this figure it then sends a large amount of data and measures how to transfer data and measures.

transferring The data for randomizing and designing to not benefit from compression and to avoid caching.

it affects proxies and ‘turbo’ browser features so to ensure that these are switched off before you test.

We send enough data to saturate your connection ensuring that even testing the fastest lines is accurate.

The test is run multiple times and these figures are averaged to get the best indication of your connection’s speed. For the upload portion of the test, a similar process occurs but random data is sent back to our servers.

What can affect my broadband speed?

There are a number of factors that can affect your speed test results that show the fastest and slowest broadband providers in the UK.:

Home layout:

The arrangement of your furniture, the thickness of your walls.

also, nearby electronic equipment can all disrupt or weaken the wireless signal transmitted by your broadband router.

If you live in a built-up area. it’s also possible that a high number of routers in close proximity will interfere with each other and slow down your broadband speed.

To give your router the best chance of achieving top speeds. it may be possible to set it to operate on a separate channel.

depending on the type of router you’re using.

You should also place your router close to the centre of your home.

away from walls and doors and at a good height, to ensure the best signal coverage.

Multiple connected devices:

The more devices that connect to your wireless broadband router at any one time, the speed will affect.

If you are simply browsing the web and reading email. the quality of your internet performance is unlikely to be heavily affected.

If you regularly download files, update software, and stream music or HD video.

the speed will drop for everyone across the network. This can be combated somewhat by closing any programs or apps that aren’t being used.

Distance from the cabinet:

If your standard or fibre optic broadband is sluggish, it could simply be that your home is situated a long distance away from the nearest cabinet where they connect to copper or fibre optic cables are. It’s also possible that your standard broadband is running along very old or damaged copper wires. In this case, switching to a fibre connection will help. However, if you already have fibre and your service is slow.

you may be better looking at a 4G or 5G home broadband service instead.

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