### Broadband Download Speeds and Costs

Much has been written lately about the speed and cost of broadband in the US relative to other countries. An article in the

*New York Times*

*allows us to look at a snapshot of these two factors for a group of 21 mostly higher-income countries. Figure 1 shows the relative speeds and costs, by country. To get this, I divided each country's speed (cost) by the (unweighted) average of the download speed (download cost).*

(Click to enlarge.)Compared to this group of countries, the US has a relatively slow download speed (16.9 thousand megabits per second, compared to a group average of 27.4, and a relatively high download cost of $0.53 per megabit per second (group average, $0.46). The US cost is not that far from the group average (15% higher), but the download speed is substantially (38%) slower.

If we look at the relationship between download speed and download cost, we get this:

(Click to enlarge.)On average, download costs

*fall*as download speeds

*rise*(the correlation coefficient is -0.397, significantly different from zero at the 1% level). Interestingly, the US lies almost perfectly on the regression line--on average, the U.S. has a download cost that we would "predict" from its download speed. [I should note that the relationship is strongly affected by four outliers--two extremely high-cost, low-speed (Greece and Turkey) and two very low cost, high-speed (The Netherlands and South Korea) countries. Excluding those four countries, the correlation coefficient falls to -0.288, still significant, and the US has a higher cost than "predicted."]

I have no big point here, just some interesting data.