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The UK has the highest mobile internet speeds in the world but lacks 4G coverage

The UK has the fastest mobile internet in the world, according to Akamai's new State of the Internet report.

The report found that during the first quarter of 2016, mobile users in the UK experienced average speeds of 27.9 Mbps. Of all the countries surveyed by Akamai, the UK had the highest average speeds.

The UK was far higher than the rest of Europe by about 10 Mpbs. It was significantly higher than the US which had a recorded average speed of only 5.1 Mbps when tested through Akamai's platform.

It has been suggested though that the way in which Akamai collected data for its report may not accurately represent the real mobile speed of the UK and other countries. This is because the average speeds were recorded between the company's servers and mobile networks' proxies. Recording the average speeds between Akamai's servers and the mobile devices of users would have likely produced more accurate numbers.

While the UK may have the fastest mobile internet speeds, recent findings from new research by OpenSignal have showed that UK's 4G coverage is lagging behind other countries in Europe. The mobile carrier EE has a total of 61 per cent coverage when it comes to 4G which is the highest in the UK. However other countries have been able to reach 70 per cent and higher coverage.

In regard to the UK's 4G coverage problems the report read: "While some countries are struggling to catch up with the rest of the world in 4G speed, the UK has an entirely different problem. UK LTE networks keep getting faster but LTE coverage just isn't advancing at the same pace.

"While regulators and operators are already looking ahead to the 5G data networks of the future, mobile consumers today are still spending nearly half their time connected to 3G networks.”

Image Credit: Everything Possible / Shutterstock

Anthony Spadafora
After living and working in South Korea for seven years, Anthony now resides in Houston, Texas where he writes about a variety of technology topics for ITProPortal.