I came across some really cool info from Google yesterday that I just had to share, as it’s likely to throw some more fuel on the fire that is the whole internet situation in Canada. A while back, Google launched something called Measurement Lab to help people keep tabs on their internet service providers. It’s basically a bunch of tools that test things like download and upload speeds. Every once in a while, Google releases the results – and they’re always illuminating.
The latest batch compares download and upload throughput speeds across 47 countries. It’s similar data to what Netflix released last week, which gauges how well internet connections perform in different countries. How does Canada rate? I’m sure the answer surprises no one: not so hot.
Of the 47 countries for which there’s data, Canada ranks 18th with download throughput averages of 4.41 megabits per second – or firmly middle of the pack. For uploads, we’re near the bottom of the list with .4 megabits per second, or 31st place. The U.S. is considerably better in both measures, ranking 10th in downloads and fourth in uploads. Who leads the pack? If you’ve been reading this blog for the last couple of weeks, you shouldn’t be shocked: Sweden is the download leader (and third in uploads), while uploads is led by tiny Romania.
Canada doesn’t look any better when some of the more developing countries are pared out of the comparison. Of the 29 member countries of the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development, Canada ranks 16th in downloads and 23rd in uploads. Again, we’re middle and bottom of the pack, respectively. The U.S. is 10th and second, in comparison.
I don’t need to get into what this means because it’s old hat by now. We suck, our innovation and competitiveness is being jeopardized by mediocre internet access, our service providers are greedy jackals, the regulator is inept, the lobbyists dispute the methodology, the government ignores it all, yadda yadda yadda, you know the drill…