stories filed under: "speeds"
by Mike Masnick
Thu, Mar 3rd 2011 2:54am
It's been nearly a decade since we first started calling out various broadband providers for hyping up their connections speeds using "up to" language, where they say you may get speeds "up to" X Mbps. Up to is the ultimate weasel phrase, because you never have to get anywhere near it, and can actually be well under it, and still be "accurate." Every so often federal regulators jump into the debate -- warning companies about this practice. At least a few broadband providers (especially in the US) have started to move away from using "up to" marketing. But it still is rare to see regulators actually go after anyone for making such misleading claims. Broadband Reports points out that UK telco regulator Ofcom seems to come out with a report every single year at this time promising that it's about to crack down on "up to" marketing, but never actually doing so. At some point, companies realize that the threats about "up to" language are about as accurate as the "up to" claims themselves.
by Mike Masnick
Fri, Aug 20th 2010 2:15pm
from the it's-comcastic dept
Ah, Comcast. Apparently the company sent an email to a user telling him that they had boosted the speeds on his broadband connection (which Comcast is trying to rebrand "Xfinity"), only to email him again a couple days later to admit they didn't really mean that. I guess it's nice that they were willing to 'fess up about making the mistake, but it still seems a bit mean to pull the rug out from under customers that way:
Of course, if the initial email was titled "Great News!" shouldn't they have titled the second one "Bad News!"
from the technology-leadership dept
A few folks have sent over the stats pages that Ookla released concerning the internet speeds that users in various countries have been able to get on their broadband connections. For those of us in the US, we're ranked 27th in download speeds, and in upload speeds as well (as of this posting). The data is constantly changing, so I've seen the US bounce around a bit, but generally we're in that 25 to 30 range. That puts us behind the tech superpowers of Kyrgyzstan. Nothing against Kyrgyzstan, of course (I hear it's lovely), but you don't often think of it as being at the top of the list of tech powerhouses. In case you were wondering, South Korea tops both lists, and the Baltic countries of Latvia and Lithuania do quite well as well.
from the stuck-in-the-slow-lane-again dept
This probably won't come as a surprise to pretty much anyone, but a new study by Ofcom in the UK found that, on average, customers received bandwidth at approximately 45% of the speed that was being advertised. Welcome to the world of "up to" marketing, where service providers get to promise "speeds up to x" and can then deliver a tiny fraction of that speed and still not be lying in their ads. However, it sounds as though Ofcom is going to get a lot more specific, and is demanding that ISPs start providing more accurate statements on what speeds customers should expect.