Plymouth among worst 10 cities for broadband speed drop-off
Broadband speeds in urban areas are at their fastest at 4am, but drop by over a quarter (28%) by evening, when most people want to go online - according to research by uSwitch.com.
The study, based on more than 2.3 million consumer speed tests over the past six months, shows average download speeds falling by as much as 60% during peak times in some parts of the UK, the busy evening hours are actually the slowest time of the day to go online.
Plymouth is listed as the eighth worst city for drop-ff with the speed at 4am of 17.12Mbps dropping to 9.88 Mbps by 9pm - a 42.3 per cent drop.
The fastest time to surf the internet in the UK’s biggest towns and cities is at 4am, when the average download speed is 14.83Mbps. The slowest time to surf is 9pm, when average speeds fall 28% to 10.72Mbps.
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Residents of Birmingham and Middlesbrough enjoy the fastest evening broadband speeds, experiencing 12.88Mbps and 12.87Mbps at 9pm respectively. But spare a thought for those broadband users in Aberdeen and Swansea. They might be poles apart in terms of UK geography, but they have one thing in common: Aberdeen residents have to make do with speeds of just 6.08Mbps at 9pm, and those in Swansea, speeds of 6.99Mbps – half the speed of Birmingham and Middlesbrough. Meanwhile, broadband users in Stoke-On-Trent experience the most consistent broadband throughout the day, with speeds between 4am and 9pm only dropping by 0.7%.
The difference in broadband speeds during peak and off-peak times is most significant in heavily built up towns and cities, due to a greater demand on services. For example, at 4am in Dudley, average broadband speeds are a super-fast 31.81Mbps. But at 9pm, they drop by 60% to 12.62Mbps.
Just eight miles away, Walsall residents are also suffering from unpredictable speeds. The drop off between 4am and 9pm is a staggering 51%. Neighbouring Bolton and Huddersfield are also seeing some of the biggest variations in broadband speeds between off-peak and peak times – of 57% and 51% respectively.