20 November 2012

Rwanda Tops Africa in Broadband Speed

Photo: Timothy Kisambira/The New Times
Rwanda currently relies on three submarine fibre optic cable systems for it internet connection.

Rwanda has the fastest broadband Internet in Africa, according to latest statistics from Ookla's NetIndex, overtaking Ghana.

The latest broadband speed results, show that Rwanda currently has download speeds of up to 7.28 Mbps from 3.28 Mbps six months ago, emerging 65th the world. The country is followed by Libya with 5.12 Mbps and Ethiopia with 4.82 Mbps.

Ghana which ranked top with the fastest broadband speed in Africa in March 2012 has now dropped to the 4th position in the ranking with broadband download speeds of up to 4.42 Mbps, down from 5.14 Mbps about six months ago.

Speaking to The New Times yesterday, the Minister of Youth and ICT, Jean Philbert Nsengimana welcomed the development, although he said there is a lot more that Rwanda needs to do.

"This shows that our efforts are paying off although we still need to do more in the area of affordability of broadband.

"Rwanda's performance in broadband speed is a result of deliberate efforts of the government that invested in fibre optic rollout and purchase of capacity," said Nsengimana.

He added that part of the plan to make broadband affordable, is reducing the cost from US$700 Mbps to US$ 125 Mbps during peak hours and US$60 off peak.

Other African countries with the fastest broadband speeds include Kenya with 4.34 Mbps, currently ranked 5th in Africa, dropping from 2nd position six months ago; Morocco with 3.51 Mbps, ranked 8th in Africa; and South Africa with 3.31 Mbps, ranked 10th in Africa and 118th in the world.

According to the report, Hong Kong ranks number one in the world with 42.08 Mbps, followed by Japan with 37.13 Mbps and Lithuania in third position with 36.81 Mbps.

Nigeria ranks 13th in Africa and 138th in the world with broadband download speeds of 2.73 Mbps and remains the second West African country with the fastest broadband speed after Ghana.

Ookla is the global leader in broadband testing and web-based network diagnostic applications. Based on millions of recent test results from Speedtest.net, the NetIndex compares and ranks consumer download speeds around the globe.

Rwanda currently relies on three submarine fibre optic cable systems for Internet connection such as the East Africa Submarine Cable System (EASSY), The East African Marine Systems

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