U.S. Makes the Best Use of Its Broadband


A new report ranking broadband connectivity argues that it’s not how much you have but what you do with it. And according to the Connectivity Scorecard, no one is doing enough. Instead of measuring bandwidth speed or how much people pay to get connected, the report throws that information into the mix with data such as literacy rates, enterprise use and services offered via broadband to deliver two sets of rankings.

connectivity_score2.gifOne ranking includes industrialized countries (which are dubbed “innovation-driven economies”); the U.S. tops the list as the country taking the most advantage of its broadband, while Japan and Korea (which have higher speeds and a reputation for more services and users) come in at No. 3 and No. 10, respectively. The other ranking focuses on “resource-driven economies” (PC-speak for developing countries.)

Russia tops that list — thanks to its high literacy rates and a large number of mobile users — while India and Nigeria round out the bottom. Props to the list makers for recognizing that different countries have different concerns when it comes to connectivity, and that there’s more to innovation than speed. But the fact that it was commissioned by Nokia Siemens Networks did make me raise an eyebrow.



I agree that India is at the bottom of the list. Faster internet is expensive and different plans offered by BSNL(in rural areas, where BSNL is the only available option) areas are too funny and embarrassing. The plans offered are devised merely to rip the customers off. Rima raised the validity of the statistics.
She finds it hard to believe the some real facts about ISPs in India. As a techguru if Rima had addressed those facts I would have been very glad. She seems reluctant about accepting the fact that, faster internet is out of reach for most people when it comes to watching a video on you-tube or downloading some applications or a piece of music. BSNL claims itself a provider of internet up to 8 mbps. But here is how it cheats people.

all rates are on monthly basis

250 ($5) bandwith upto 2 mbps, actual download speed (data transfer rate is 200 kbps)
720 mb of content an hour can be downloaded max. Downloading limit is 1 GB!
For each MB in excess of 1 GB additional charge is 90 paisa (2 cents/ MB).

Just imagine what a consumer is supposed to do after this tiny data downloading limit is crossed.

Story doesn’t end there.

For 500 ($10) BSNL, all criteria remain same but downloading limit is 2.5 gb, and consumers are blessed with no limit downloading time from 2-8 in the morning. Thus BSNL really wants consumers to stay awake all night as if it is doing huge favor to them.

Some might suggest signing up for 700 ($14) but then consumers are chained with the
bandwidth of 256 kbps only while actual data tranfer rate is 30 kbps..(108 mb of contents for an hour). for 1500 ($30) consumers are offered only 512 kbps and transfer rate of only 60 kbps.

While for $30 people can get a very nice connection anywhere in the world.

Thus average indian consumer is like an inmate in a penitentiary, Provider BSNL is bitchy warden.

Thats the real face of the INDIAN internet.

Rima Patel Sriganesh


I realized later that you were the OP and not Om. Pardon my oversight.


Rima Patel Sriganesh


I am not sure of the criteria used in coming up with the posted results, but in India, I believe we use “personal” bandwidth mostly for emails/chats, downloading content (illegal content, many times, from file sharing services), and viewing pictures of friends/family. In other words, I don’t see an average Indian (a non-tech person) use Internet for much other. Of course, this is a generalization; in specific cases, we do have some excellent bloggers from various walks of life in India sharing their thoughts/perspectives. But not much user content is generated in India as compared to in, say, “innovation-driven economies”.

That besides the fact that high-speed Internet penetration is extremely low in India. Reasons for this could be many starting from regulatory authority (TRAI) not doing the needful to amateur business understanding of telco companies in the ISP space to lack of access to state owned telecommunications infrastructure at affordable rates by ISPs. Nonetheless, the picture is less dismal than what it was a few years back. Let us hope the opening up of 3G spectrum leads to something concrete in near term future.


Libran Lover

While these results are interesting, they certainly don’t give the complete picture. Perhaps, Sweden and Japan see less usage compared to the US because they have more?

To give an example: Low income families use up a higher percentage of income, than the rich folks. That DOES NOT mean low income people are doing more with their money than the rich people. In fact, the rich people might be living a higher quality of life and enjoy better benefits on a smaller percentage of their income.

To summarize, the US might just be a bandwidth poor country making max use of available resources.


I’ll have to agree. It’s no secret that porn is one of the most popular uses for the internet. This certainly is stimulating, but its not the mind thats being stimulated.

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