THE Orkney Islands has the worst internet access in Scotland and the UK, new research can reveal.
Orkney Islands has the lowest percentage of premises connected to Superfast Broadband (64.3% compared to the UK average of 94%) and has just 1% of households with Ultrafast Broadband (compared to the UK average of 59%). Residents of Orkney Islands also face the slowest download speeds in the UK, at just 34.8 Megabits per second – the UK standard is 58.2 Megabits per second.
Scotland dominates the list of top ten worst areas for internet connection in the UK, with half the areas falling in Scotland.
The research, by digital literacy experts Typing.com analysed new Ofcom data on download speeds and access to Superfast and Ultrafast broadband in the UK’s 376 local authorities, and created an index to discover which areas had the worst internet connection of all.
Top 10 areas with the worst internet connection
|Area||Rank||Median download speed (Mbit/s)||SFBB availability (%)||UFBB availability (%)||Overall index score|
|ARGYLL AND BUTE||3||42.7||78.1||1.8||10.3|
|NA H-EILEANAN SIAR||4||44.8||75.7||4.5||10.6|
|DUMFRIES AND GALLOWAY||8||44.8||85.4||8||11.4|
Top 10 areas with the best internet connection
|Area||Rank||Median download speed (Mbit/s)||SFBB availability (%||UFBB availability %||Overall index score|
|KINGSTON UPON HULL, CITY OF||10||171.4||98.5||97.6||32.4|
|NORTH EAST LINCOLNSHIRE||7||116.7||96.7||88.5||30.7|
The Shetland Islands has the second poorest internet access in both Scotland and the UK. In the Shetland Islands, just 2.1% of premises have access to Ultrafast broadband, compared to the UK average of 59%, and the median download speed is 41 Megabits per second, compared to the UK average of 58.2 Megabits per second.
Argyll and Bute places third on the UK’s list of areas with the worst internet access. The median download speed in Argyle and Bute is just 42.7 Megabits per second, while just 78.1% have access to Superfast broadband and just 1.8% have access to Ultrafast Broadband.
Na H’Eilenan Siar comes fourth on the list of areas with the worst internet access in the UK. Only 4.5% have access to Ultrafast broadband, while the median download speed is just 42.1 Megabits per second. Dumfries and Galloway also has some of the poorest internet in the UK.
At the other end of the scale, Kingston Upon Hull boasts the best internet connection in the UK, with the best combined download speed (171.4 Megabits per minute), and Superfast and Ultrafast broadband coverage. And while Scottish areas dominate the list of UK areas with the worst internet connection, the place with the second-best internet access in the UK also falls in Scotland. West Dunbartonshire boasts a download speed of 127.4 Megabits a minute, and 89.6% of its households have access to Ultrafast broadband – well above the UK average of 59%.
A spokesperson for Typing.com commented on the findings:
“This data gives us a compelling insight into just how significant the digital divide is across the UK, particularly in Scotland. Everything we do as a society, from education, work and daily living, is so intertwined with the internet, and the importance of fair digital access for all should never be underestimated. While some parts of Scotland – for instance, West Dunbartonshire, are faring well in terms of internet access and connection – the fact that 50% of the UK’s least digitally connected places fall in Scotland show that we have a long way to go before every area has adequate internet quality”