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Ofcom’s Broadband Research Confirms: “Up To” Equals “Very Little Chance Of”

by David Mercer | Jul 28, 2009

Only 9% of the UK’s broadband subscribers to the most popular “up to 8Mbps” service receive more than 75% of the stated maximum broadband speed (ie 6Mbps or more), according to the latest study from the communications regulator, Ofcom. On an average 24-hour basis, these customers should in fact expect to get speeds of less than half the stated maximum – 3.9Mbps. The study also found (see Figures 6.3 and 6.4) that not one respondent receiving “up to 8Mbps” service received an average speed of more than 7Mbps, and only one (a very isolated looking blue dot) received a maximum speed of 8Mbps. Chances are this was some kind of freak data point. None of these findings are surprising, of course; they merely confirm what we have suspected all along. Since the early days of this blog I’ve been railing against the misleading practice of marketing broadband data services with the phrase “up to”, since that can mean anything from 0 to the stated number. What Ofcom’s detailed technical research confirms is that customers should not even expect 8Mbps, and only a small percentage should expect more than 6Mbps. That surely is a case for the advertising watchdogs to investigate. Twitter: twitter.com/DavidMercer_SA Client Reading: Broadband Service Provider Performance Benchmarking: Europe Q1 2009 Add to Technorati Favorites
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