Afterword: Internet speed

Following my post on Australia’s Internet filter and looking around for other opinions on the subject, it seems that a lot of people were concerned about speed of the Internet here and the potential network performance degradation when a filter is in place — especially after the results of the ISP-level Internet content filtering laboratory trials were released in July 2008.

Looking at the 2008 broadband rankings published by the ITIF last June, it seems that international comparison does not place Australia all that well at the moment when it comes to broadband speed. When I visited Japan, France and Finland last year, I noticed that the Internet was significantly faster. Here are the numbers that show why…

Average download speed in Mbps per country

Average download speed in Mbps per country

Admittedly, Finland and France have amongst the fastest broadband speeds in the world — 21.7 Mbps and 17.6 Mbps respectively; not to mention Japan with a whooping 63.6 Mbps. At these speeds, even if these countries were to put in place the worst ISP-based filter in terms of performance degradation (87%), their broadband speed would still be faster than in Australia (1.7 Mbps).

Hopefully, the National Broadband Network will address the performance issue, but in the meantime we have to deal with sluggish connections hoping than an Internet filter will not be make them even slower.

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