Malta records fifth best broadband penetration rate across EU

A report by the European Commission has found that broadband services in Malta are subject to more latency; Malta has fifth best broadband penetration in the EU

A report by the European Commission that Malta's 34% broadband penetration rate is the fifth best in Europe.
A report by the European Commission that Malta's 34% broadband penetration rate is the fifth best in Europe.

Malta has the fifth best broadband penetration rate in the EU as the performance of broadband services in Malta improved and is today better than the EU average in a number of key performance indicators, the Malta Communications Authority said.

Standing at 34%, Malta’s broadband penetration rate now ranks fifth in the EU, surpassed only by Germany, France, the Netherlands and Denmark, which recorded the best performing penetration of 40%.

A report published by the European Commission on the performance of fixed broadband across member states and other European countries has also indicated that Malta fared worse than the EU average with respect to the penetration of connections of at least 30 Mbps.

The penetration in Malta stood at 4% whilst that of the EU was 5.4%. In the best performing country in this regard – Belgium, 21% of subscribers enjoyed a connection speed of 30 Mbps or more.

When comparing the average speed performance against the advertised speed, the score obtained by the Maltese ISPs is above the EU average and at times exceeded the 100% mark 0 the only country across the EU to manage to exceed this mark.

Malta’s average speed performance means that ISPs are performing better in terms of fulfilling their promised speeds in their adverts when compared to other EU countries. Furthermore, there are instances in which the actual speed obtained by the subscriber, is higher than the advertised speed. 

Packet loss and latency are two other indicators reported in the study.  While speed indicates how fast data travels in the network, packet loss is an indication of how much of that data is lost over the network.  Therefore, networks sporting high speeds with low packet losses indicate high performance. 

On the other hand, latency is a measure of delay in communication, which amongst others, is a function of the distance between the two network points in communication. The three indicators, that is speed, packet loss and latency, combined are important factors to consider for applications requiring high speed and real time response such as high quality video services and applications related to financial services.

With regard to packet loss, Malta registered an exceptionally low figure when compared to other countries.

The report also found that broadband services in Malta are subject to more latency than those in other Member States.  The MCA considers that this finding is likely to have been significantly influenced by the location of the server against which latency was measured.

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