Finally, great news about U.S. internet speeds has surfaced and things are definitely starting to look up for U.S. broadband customers this year.
According to the first half of 2016 market report from Speedtest.net, U.S. broadband download speeds have increased by an impressive 42 percent rate compared to July 2015 and U.S. broadband customers are now experiencing an average of 50+ Mbps download speeds for the first time.
This huge improvement we attribute mainly to tighter competition among U.S. broadband providers to satisfy the ever-growing consumer demand for faster speeds.
As U.S. consumers shift more toward high-definition video streaming services, internet telephony, and cloud storage options, the need for even faster broadband speeds will certainly be a driving factor in spurring internet providers to offer performance improvements across the board.
In fact, the biggest leaps in download performance come from the top U.S. broadband providers. The top 10 percent average U.S. download speeds jumped from 99.03 Mbps to 117.91 Mbps from last year and these improvements mainly come from the major ISPs in the U.S.
Photo Credit: Speedtest.net
5. AT&T U-VERSE and CENTURYLINK
Coming in number five are the DSL providers AT&T U-verse at 49.78 Mbps and CenturyLink at 39.85 Mbps. Owing to their outdated DSL technologies, these providers are still dragging the U.S. average downloads despite the huge improvements other ISPs have accomplished this year. Hopefully, with the rollout of their fiber networks, we will see dramatic speed improvements further down the line for these two DSL providers, which will definitely improve the U.S.'s overall download average and its global ranking.
4. VERIZON FIOS
The sub-100 Mbps average speeds still figure as high as fourth place. Surprisingly, Verizon Fios' fiber optic service is still at 94.98 Mbps, although they did improve their speeds from 83.91 Mbps in January. They make up for it with their symmetrical upload speed at 93.64, which ranks first among all U.S. broadband providers.
Third place is Spectrum, the result of the merger of Bright House, Time Warner Cable, and Charter. The biggest improvement is from Time Warner Cable, which dramatically improved their top-tier speed from a lowly 34.54 Mbps average in January to 152.70 Mbps in May. Bright House also increased their average speed by 21.02 Mbps since January. These improvements pulled Spectrum's total average to 131.97 Mbps, good enough for third place.
2. COX COMMUNICATIONS
Coming in fast at second place is Cox Communications. With Cox's major network improvements in May and June of this year, they managed to increase their average download speed by an impressive 35 percent in that relatively short time span. From 119.98 Mbps in April, they upped the ante with a 162.14 Mbps average download rate by June. Expect Cox Communications to figure even higher speeds in the future as they roll out their gigabit service in more areas.
Finally, first place belongs to XFINITY with a top download speed of 125.53 Mbps. According to Speedtest's yearly analysis, XFINITY always gets top marks from year to year but the other internet providers are quickly closing the gap. XFINITY's 15.26 average upload speed, however, is slower than their competitors.
To read more about speedtest.net's 2016 six-month internet speed data, including U.S. mobile internet rankings, check out their Market Report found here.