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Ovum: Consumers need minimum broadband speeds of 10Mbps

Monday, September 14th 2015 by Ellen Branagh

Most broadband users need download speeds of at least 10Mbps to get the best customer experience, according to new research.

According to a new white paper by analysis firm Ovum, consumers need at least 10Mbps to get a good quality broadband experience, with many households “well shy of this mark’’.

The white paper, Unleashing the Power of Ultra Broadband, which combined a consumer survey with market data on the broadband market in 30 countries, looks at the major drivers for ultrafast broadband.

For fixed line consumer broadband, the best customer experience is supported by three key factors.

They are: download speeds of at least 10Mbps; a stable and reliable network that delivers content in no more than three seconds; and outstanding customer service that can resolve most issues at the first point of contact.

Michael Philpott, practice leader, consumer services and co-author of the report, said: “Ever since broadband services were launched, there has been discussion on what is the definition of broadband and how much speed do consumers really need?

“In 2015, the answer is at least 10Mbps if you wish to receive a good-quality broadband experience, and a significant number of households, even in well-developed broadband countries, are well shy of this mark.”

The research confirmed the rise in the use of video – both standard and high definition – and the need for networks to be able to support high-quality video delivery.

Mr Philpott said demands on the broadband service provided to consumers were “compounded by the rise in connected devices”.

'Poor user experience'

“Homes in mature markets were found to typically have up to four devices connected to the network, all of which have the potential to support a wide range of applications.”

Using the analysis of 30 countries around the world, Ovum created a Global Broadband Experience Scorecard to compare the quality of the consumer broadband experience.

The research found that, globally, Sweden scored the highest level of Broadband Experience of the 30 countries researched, while regionally Europe came out on top.

“With a clear link between poor user experience and customer churn, broadband service providers need to continue to invest in broadband infrastructure in order to provide their customers with the best broadband experience and maintain a satisfied customer base,” Mr Philpott added.

Earlier this year the government announced it planned to bring broadband speeds of at least 100Mbps to nearly all homes in the country.

In his budget speech in March, George Osborne told MPs: “We’re committing to a new national ambition to bring ultrafast broadband of at least 100 megabits per second to nearly all homes in the country, so Britain is out in front.”

At the time, the government said it was also looking to raise the Universal Service Obligation (USO) – the legal entitlement to a basic service – from dial up speeds to 5Mbps broadband.

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