back to article Australia's Akamai ranking has nothing to do with the NBN

There's never any shortage of ways for Australia to feel inadequate about its broadband performance, and speed comparisons are a perennial favourite. With Akamai's latest State of the Internet report hitting the Internet at the end of last week, Australians are in for another bout of soul-searching: while our year-on-year …

  1. LaeMing

    Welcome... the de-developing world.

  2. aberglas

    I just want 5mbs, relaiably

    The Akamai figures are nonsense.

    Forget gigabit speeds. Forget 25 mbs. Just a basic 5mbs that works is all I want.

    I struggle along at 2mbs and Telstra threatens to cut me off entirely, giving me 0.056mbs

    I'm not sure what I would do with more than 5mbs. I do not have an ultra high definition TV. But I do need reliable internet.

    How many people get < 5mbs reliable. That is the real statistic. And it will not be pretty for Australia. And not just for people in remote places.

    1. James Ashton

      Re: I just want 5mbs, relaiably

      Your ISP service is not good so Akamai's stats are wrong?

      1. sms123

        Re: I just want 5mbs, relaiably

        I think you missed his point. He seems to be arguing that Akami has a better idea of speed than most. It's less about ISP service and more about physics some people live a long way from their exchange.

        The ABS statistics while interesting are somewhat misleading. They measure "advertised" speeds - ADSL2+ is almost definitely lumped into the 8-24Mb range. I have ADSL2+ yet my sync speed is 3 down 1 up because I'm 4.9km from my exchange (despite the fact that there are two other exchanges within 2km of my home - I'm unable to get service from those exchanges or at least unwilling to make the switch because there's no guarantee that I will get ADSL2+ ports at those exchanges). There's no cable here because the estate where I live was created after the cable roll out.

        It's not surprising that Akami's measurements are significantly worse than the ABS stats but the Akami stats are more likely to reflect reality that any advertised speed for broadband service.

        Most people who bemoan the NBN do so because they live close to an exchange or are in a cable area and can get fast broadband (the amount of people who seem to think FU we don't need no NBN because I can get fast speeds therefore everyone else must be able to is astounding).

    2. mathew42

      Re: I just want 5mbs, relaiably

      > How many people get < 5mbs reliable. That is the real statistic. And it will not be pretty for Australia. And not just for people in remote places.

      One of Labor's numerous mistakes with their NBN plans was not focusing on the areas of greatest need. A quick rule of thumb could be any suburb settled post 1970s when Telstra started installing RIMs and pair gain systems.

  3. Gumby1

    Or the Rabbit hole

    And alternative to the end to end speed change might point to the data being misdirected in its route to ... lets guess... a storage facility! Seems to fit the time frame.

  4. James Ashton

    Forget the ABS and International Capacity

    I trust Akamai to know what download speeds people are getting; they're the ones who actually serve up many large downloads and the bottleneck is rarely going to be at their end. Where does the ABS get their numbers? I assume it's what ISPs and/or customers quote about their plans. Do we really think the maximum speed quoted on people's plans is a good guide to actual end-to-end performance?

    Why are we blaming international link bottlenecks here? The whole reason we have Akamai in the first place is to bypass those links. Surely their stats will be based on speeds from their on-shore presence to Australian end users, a great way to measure our actual end-to-end speeds over entirely Australian infrastructure.

    1. P. Lee

      Re: Forget the ABS and International Capacity

      >Surely their stats will be based on speeds from their on-shore presence to Australian end users,

      I would imagine there's a hierarchy and an incomplete caching system, so they can test akamai (au) to end-user (au), but also akamai(non-au) to akamai(au) and also akamai(non-au) to end-user(au).

      A very high proportion of my traffic isn't within Australia, so slow(er?) links into Australia links are very much part of my internet experience.

      I'm with an earlier poster though, I'd prefer a more reliable connection to higher speed.

      1. LaeMing

        Re: Forget the ABS and International Capacity

        My mum would just like a connection. At any speed!

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Forget the ABS and International Capacity

          My fat pipe is on its way. Tell her to feel free to download all she wants :-)

          1. LaeMing

            Re: Forget the ABS and International Capacity

            My mum is 76 and slowly dying of a muscular degenerative auto-immune disease combined with the long-term ravages of childhood diphtheria. I love her dearly, but I think your fat pipe would suffer 'shrinkage' if you saw her today. :-P

            But she will laugh at your comment and say something hilariously inappropriate in response when I tell her.

            What she won't laugh at is that she can't get Medicare forms anywhere except on the Internet (which she can't get*) or the Medicare office (which she can't get to). She eventually had her local MP to send her a bunch in the post.

            * no ports left at the exchange for a hard line (and none to be added as why invest in extra DSLAMs when NBN is coming ... one decade real soon now), and the wireless is so chronically oversubscribed on both Telstra and Optus that, while we can get a 3-4 bar signal, we can't even get bandwidth to connect to the respective companies' sites to pay for the service.

            1. LaeMing


              It also pisses her off an awful lot when every time she has to deal with a business or government peon, they refer her to information on the Internet, and when she informs them she can't get any Internet where she is they refuse to believe such a thing is possible.

          2. Tim Roberts 1

            Re: Forget the ABS and International Capacity

            re AC response, bit tasteless about your fat pipe being on it's way - I don't know whether to chuckle or give you a downvote - but the reality is that there really are people in Oz who have yet to see the wonders of reliable internet.

            1. LaeMing

              Re: Forget the ABS and International Capacity


              Give him a chuckle. My mum really won't mind. She may even start stalking him to take him up on the offer - whether he wants to or not! Believe me, my mum has quickly learned that being elderly, you either give better than you get or get trampled under.

              I think the manager of her bank's ears are probably still ringing 3 days after they sent her a letter threatening to hand her emergency savings over to a government custodian because the (modestly sizable) account hadn't seen any activity (other than receiving interest) for a couple of years (this is the money she has put aside to staunchly 'not be a burden on society' with). I fixed it anyway by making a specifically 5c deposit into it for her, and diarising myself to do so every year in the future.

              Go Mum!

  5. Winkypop Silver badge


    Send more string!

    1. Roadcrew

      Re: String

      ...but surely it's an embiggened pipe we need?

      Lots of spare lengths of water pipe stacked up where they abandoned the drought relief plan when it rained.

      Oh, wait...

  6. Hazmoid

    your Mum seems to be an ideal candidate for a FTTP service.

    Yep people who seem to think that "We don't need no steenkin' NBN" always seem to be posting from a location that already has great cabling and services. Anyone would think they work for the "Internet Guru" Malcolm Turnbull.

    You Go Mum. I went through the same exercise with my father and ended up getting a Bigpond wireless service for him because there was just no way they were ever going to get an ADSL copper service ( they barely got telephone service, and if it rained or the cattle rubbed up against the posts, it cut out)

    Personally I would love to have the option to get fibre retrofitted in our neighbourhood but that is as unlikely as actually getting on to the NBN project map. Maybe when Tony and co get tossed on their asses at the next election we might finally show up on the project map and the NBN will start installing fibre again. Maybe it is a good thing we aren't on the map at the moment ;)

    1. LaeMing

      Re: your Mum seems to be an ideal candidate for a FTTP service.

      Sadly, both Optus and Telstra wireless are so chronically oversubscribed in mum's area that, despite having a 3-4 (of 5) bar signal, I can't even connect her to the respective networks' own sites to pay their monthly fee!

      They tried to blame it on increased usage due to it being school holidays. Not for the whole of the past 6 months it bloody isn't!

  7. Wombling_Free

    But how is Big Tony going to collect our metadata?

    If we can't send the metadata, they can't collect the metadata.

    If the governmonkeys want my metas, they can bloody well up the speeds so I can send it to them.

    Maybe we'll all have to mail it in via AusPist.

POST COMMENT House rules

Not a member of The Register? Create a new account here.

  • Enter your comment

  • Add an icon

Anonymous cowards cannot choose their icon

Other stories you might like