Average internet speeds in Australia fall behind Mauritius, Uruguay and Georgia in Ookla's latest Net Index ranking. At 49th in the list, we're barely ahead of Kazakhstan and Mongolia.
According to the Ookla Net Index, the average internet download speed in Australia is 14.19Mbps, with an average upload speed of 2.83Mbps. That's a long way from ranking leader Hong Kong, with an average speed of 71.03Mbps but, thankfully, far ahead of last-placed Afghanistan's 1.13Mbps. 1,142,546 tests taken by Australian Speedtest.net and mobile Speedtest app users between October 28 and November 26 were used to calculate the average speed ratings.
At average Australian download speeds, a 1.3GB file, roughly the size of a 45-minute TV show episode at 720p resolution, would take 12 minutes and 12 seconds to download. That same file would take one hour, one minute and 15 seconds to upload to a video-sharing site, like YouTube. These aren't terrible figures, especially compared to countries like Afghanistan (with an identical upload taking three hours and 48 minutes), but they're not terribly realistic.
Ookla's results cover every Australian connection — not differentiating between residential, commercial, governmental or otherwise. That means the true representative speed is bumped up by a few outliers, like the 112 results from The Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO), with an average download speed of 242.72Mbps, and AARNet, with 247 test results averaging 161.49Mbps.
iiNet-owned TransACT is Australia's fastest major ISP (19th overall) in the Ookla Net Index, with an average download speed of 26.12Mbps, thanks to its large spread of 100Mbps-capable fibre-to-the-premises broadband. Optus and Telstra are second and third, with their NBN and HFC cable network offerings bumping up their overall speeds to 19.72 and 17.54MBps, respectively.
Optus and Telstra's results are also boosted by their fast 4G long-term evolution (LTE) network services. The mobile-only Vodafone scores a ranking of the 11th fastest major ISP, with an average download speed of 8.27Mbps.
Of the 186 countries tested, Australia's 49th-place ranking certainly isn't a bad showing. What it does demonstrate, though, is that we're a long way from world class, and without our incredibly fast educational and research institutions to shore up our average speeds, we'd be far further down the list.