Despite All Odds, Global Internet Speeds Continue Impressive Increase - Ookla

Ookla reports the United Arab Emirates maintained its first-place ranking for mobile in both 2020 and 2021

Aman Ali

2021-09-08 2 min read

Some key takeaways from the report include -

Mobile download speed jumped 59.5% over the last year globally, fixed broadband up 31.9%
Top 10 rankings are somewhat constant over three years, U.S. and Canada slip off in 2021
The United Arab Emirates maintained its first-place ranking for mobile in both 2020 and 2021


The global mean of download speeds improved over the last 12 months on both mobile and fixed broadband to 55.07 Mbps and 107.50 Mbps, respectively, in July 2021. Mobile saw an increase of 59.5% when comparing July 2020 to July 2021 and fixed broadband saw an increase of 31.9%, according to the Speedtest Global Index.

The United Arab Emirates and South Korea maintain their first and second place rankings for mobile in both 2020 and 2021 and China and Qatar merely flip-flop for third and fourth place. It’s interesting to see Australia and Canada decline in the rankings although their speeds have increased dramatically during the past three years. 5G is shifting mobile rankings where even countries with 5G (which few countries had in 2019) need a strong 5G focus to maintain their presence at the top of the list lest they be outpaced by other countries with larger investments in 5G.

Most countries that made the top 10 in July 2021 for either mobile or fixed broadband were performing well over the global average for both at that point in time. South Korea and the U.A.E. stood out with mean mobile download speeds that were more than 240% faster than the global average and fixed broadband downloads that were more than 70% faster than the global average. China’s mobile download speed was more than 180% faster than the global average and the country was more than 70% faster than the global average for fixed broadband. Switzerland’s mobile and fixed broadband download speeds were close to 100% faster than the global average.

Comparing the chart for July 2021 to that of July 2020, we saw a wide variety of outcomes. Countries with increases compared to the global average on mobile and fixed broadband included Australia, Cyprus, Denmark, Hong Kong, Romania and the U.A.E. Chile and Norway showed dramatic increases compared to the global average on fixed broadband and declines on mobile. Bulgaria, China, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia and Switzerland increased on mobile but showed little change on fixed. South Korea and Qatar increased on mobile compared to the global average and declined on fixed. Singapore and Thailand declined on both mobile and fixed broadband compared to the global average.

Track your country’s performance using monthly updates on the Speedtest Global Index. Check the Ookla 5G Map™ for up-to-date information on 5G deployments where you live, and if you want more in-depth analyses, subscribe to Ookla Insights™.



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