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Akamai Releases Second Quarter 2015 ‘State of the Internet’ Report

  • European countries continued to dominate with largest percentage of content requests made to Akamai over IPv6
  • number of unique IPv4 addresses worldwide connecting to Akamai dropped
  • Global average connection speed increases 17% year-over-year; South Korea leads at 23.1 Mbps
  • Global average peak connection speed reaches 32.5 Mbps; up 26% year-over-year
  • Gabon, Cameroon, Nepal and Iraq experience significant Internet disruptions

Akamai Technologies logo[news release] Akamai Technologies, Inc., the global leader in content delivery network (CDN) services, today (23/9) released its Second Quarter, 2015 State of the Internet Report. Based on data gathered from the Akamai Intelligent Platform™, the report provides insight into key global statistics such as connection speeds, broadband adoption metrics, notable Internet disruptions and IPv4 exhaustion and IPv6 implementation.

Data and graphics from the Second Quarter, 2015 State of the Internet Report can be found on the Akamai State of the Internet site and through the Akamai State of the Internet app for iOS and Android devices. State of the Internet Report-related discussions are also taking place on the Akamai Community.

“We continued to see healthy increases in key connection speed metrics, particularly on a year-over-year basis,” said David Belson, editor of the report. “The improvement in connection speeds is vital as more content, not the least of which is video at increasingly higher levels of quality, is being delivered over the Internet. Ongoing progress and innovation in these areas, as evidenced in the report, will play a key role in helping address consumer demand for access to content where and when they want it.”

Highlights from Akamai’s Second Quarter, 2015 State of the Internet Report:

Global Average Connection Speeds and Global Broadband Connectivity

The global average connection speed increased 3.5% to 5.1 Mbps in the second quarter of 2015. Quarterly changes were positive for the top 10 countries/regions, with the exception of South Korea (23.1 Mbps), which decreased 2.1% from the first quarter. Japan (16.4 Mbps) saw the largest quarterly gain at 7.8%, while the remaining eight countries experienced modest gains ranging from 1.5% in Hong Kong (17.0 Mbps) to 4.6% in Switzerland (15.6 Mbps). Average connection speeds among the top 10 countries/regions all remained well above 10 Mbps and like the previous quarter, six of the 10 had average connection speeds above 15 Mbps. Globally, 110 out of 144 qualifying countries/regions saw average connection speeds increase from the previous quarter, with growth rates ranging from a modest 0.4% in Senegal (1.5 Mbps) to a substantial 67% in Tunisia (2.8 Mbps). Like last quarter, year-over-year changes were consistently positive in the top 10, except for South Korea, which declined 11% compared with the second quarter of 2014. On a global basis, the average connection speed increased 17% year over year.

In the second quarter, global average peak connection speeds increased 12% to 32.5 Mbps. Speeds increased in every top 10 country/region except Sweden (62.8 Mbps), which remained unchanged from the first quarter. Singapore (108.3 Mbps) saw the only double-digit quarterly gain, with a 12% increase, while the remaining eight countries saw increases ranging from 0.6% in Romania (72.1 Mbps) to 7.8% in Macao (62.6 Mbps). Eight of the top 10 saw average peak speeds greater than 70 Mbps, while Sweden and Macao saw speeds above 60 Mbps. On a global basis, 107 of the 143 qualifying countries/regions saw average peak connection speeds increase from the first quarter, with growth ranging from 0.1% in Trinidad and Tobago (34.9 Mbps) to 100% in Egypt (23.4 Mbps). Year-over-year all of the top 10 countries/regions saw increases in average peak connection speeds except Israel (71.4 Mbps), which posted a 14% decline.

Last quarter, the State of the Internet reported for the first time on the percentage of IP addresses connecting to Akamai at average speeds of above 25 Mbps, the new benchmark broadband speed adopted by the U.S. Federal Communications Commission in January 2015. Globally, 4.9% of unique IP addresses connected to Akamai at average speeds of at least 25 Mbps, a 7.5% increase over the previous quarter. Despite a 5.5% quarterly decline to a rate of 29%, South Korea again led the world in 25 Mbps broadband adoption, just as it has for all of the other broadband adoption metrics in the second quarter. Its adoption rate was nearly double that of second-place Hong Kong, which dropped 2.9% from the first quarter to 16%. Year-over-year, global 25 Mbps adoption dropped slightly, by 0.5%, in contrast to the 20% yearly growth seen in the first quarter. Two of the top 10 countries saw losses: South Korea’s adoption rate dropped 24% and Hong Kong’s declined 11%. In the United States, five states had 10% or more of unique IP addresses connect to Akamai at average speeds of at least 25 Mbps.

The global percentage of unique IP addresses connecting to Akamai that met the 4 Mbps broadband speed threshold increased 1.1% to 64%, with most of the top 10 countries/regions showing small changes compared to the previous quarter. Globally, 107 countries/regions qualified for inclusion for this metric, and 85 of them saw quarterly growth in 4 Mbps broadband adoption rates, down from 100 in the previous quarter. Year-over-year the percentage of unique IP addresses connecting to Akamai at average speeds of at least 4 Mbps increased 8.1%, continuing the positive trend that began in the first quarter.

In the second quarter of 2015, 27% of unique IP addresses globally connected to Akamai at average speeds above 10 Mbps, an increase of 2.1% over the previous quarter. Six of the top 10 countries/regions saw quarter-over-quarter increases, ranging from Sweden’s (53% adoption) 1.3% gain to Singapore’s (50% adoption) 8.4% rise – a gain that pushed Singapore into the top 10 this quarter, just ahead of Latvia (49% adoption). Among the 71 qualifying countries/regions, 46 saw quarter-over-quarter increases, ranging from 0.2% in Malta (31% adoption) to 118% in Kazakhstan (16% adoption).

Fourteen percent of unique IP addresses globally connected to Akamai at average connection speeds of 15 Mbps or above, up 2.5% from the first quarter. Despite declining for the third quarter in a row, South Korea remained the clear leader in 15 Mbps broadband adoption at 53%, while second-place Hong Kong saw an adoption rate of 40%, a slight increase from the previous quarter. Overall, quarterly gains were seen in 35 qualifying regions/countries, compared with only 46 in the previous quarter. Year-over-year, the global 15 Mbps adoption rate grew 9.9% with gains among all of the top 10 except South Korea, where adoption rates declined 21%.

IPv4 and IPv6

Reversing the trend seen in the first quarter, the number of unique IPv4 addresses worldwide connecting to Akamai dropped by about 8.6 million in the second quarter. Six of the top 10 countries saw a quarterly decline in unique IPv4 address counts in the second quarter, compared with three in the previous quarter. Brazil saw the largest decline at 4.6%, while China saw the smallest at 1.5%. On a global basis, IP address growth was lower than in the first quarter. Roughly half of the countries/regions saw a quarter-over-quarter increase in unique IPv4 address counts, with 34 growing 10% or more. Of the countries/regions that saw unique IPv4 address counts decline, 25 lost 10% or more as compared with the previous quarter.

European countries continued to dominate the 10 countries/regions with the largest percentage of content requests made to Akamai over IPv6 in the second quarter of 2015. Similar to previous quarters, Belgium maintained its clear lead, with 38% of content requests being made over IPv6. Switzerland (23%) saw the largest increase, enjoying a 168% jump over the previous quarter, moving into second place globally, with nearly a quarter of content requests coming over IPv6. As with the previous quarter, the only two non-European counties among the top 10 were the U.S. and Peru, both of which saw significant double-digit quarterly improvements to adoption rates of 19% and 17%, respectively. Belgium’s Telenet (53%) joined Verizon Wireless (71%) and Brutele (67%) in the second quarter in seeing more than half of their requests to Akamai made over IPv6, though Verizon and Brutele’s figures were unchanged from the previous quarter.

Internet Disruptions and Events

This quarter’s report also highlights Internet disruptions and events in Gabon, Cameroon, Iraq and, most notably, those affecting Nepal as a result of the deadly April 25 earthquake. Immediately following the disaster, Akamai saw traffic to the country drop to 11% of previous levels, before recovering over the following days. A May 12 aftershock caused additional problems before traffic again returned to normal over the course of several hours.

Mobile Connectivity

The number of mobile data subscriptions is increasing rapidly, driving growth in data traffic along with a continuous increase in the average data volume per subscription. Based on traffic data collected by Ericsson, the volume of mobile data traffic grew by 15% between the first and second quarters of 2015, and increased 55% year-over-year.

Mobile connection speed and browser usage data are absent from this quarter’s report due to ongoing changes being made to further refine Akamai’s mobile network identification algorithms.

Ask the Expert

State of the Internet Report Editor David Belson will respond to “Ask the Expert” questions submitted via the Akamai Community Wednesday, September 23, through Friday, September 25.

About the Akamai State of the Internet Report

Each quarter, Akamai publishes a “State of the Internet” report. This report includes data gathered from across the Akamai Intelligent Platform about attack traffic, broadband adoption, mobile connectivity and other relevant topics concerning the Internet and its usage, as well as trends seen in this data over time. For additional information on the metrics in the report and how they are analyzed, please visit http://akamai.me/sotimetrics. To learn more and to access the archive of past reports, please visit http://www.stateoftheinternet.com/soti-reports. To download the figures from the Second Quarter, 2015 State of the Internet Report, please visit: http://wwwns.akamai.com/soti/soti_q215_figures.zip

About Akamai

As the global leader in Content Delivery Network (CDN) services, Akamai makes the Internet fast, reliable and secure for its customers. The company’s advanced web performance, mobile performance, cloud security and media delivery solutions are revolutionizing how businesses optimize consumer, enterprise and entertainment experiences for any device, anywhere. To learn how Akamai solutions and its team of Internet experts are helping businesses move faster forward, please visit www.akamai.com or blogs.akamai.com, and follow @Akamai on Twitter.

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