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India’s internet speeds have increased, but the country is still well behind other nations in 109th place according to new global rankings.

India’s rank of 109th, according to Ookla Global Index, is based on mobile internet speeds and comes after a near 50% speed increase over the course of this year. Fixed broadband fares better in some ways and worse in others, having improved by almost 100% this year, yet still only achieving 76th place worldwide. The improvement in each sector saw India slip down one place on the mobile rankings and merely maintain position on fixed broadband speeds, falling below its neighbours Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Nepal. The top countries in the charts were Noway and Singapore for mobile and broadband, respectively.

“This is pretty much a direct result of incumbents operating as an oligopoly,” said Nick Kyriakides, Co-founder and COO of netTALK, a US company fighting their own broadband issues. “Reliance Jio’s entrance to the market was an interesting story which resulted in improved speeds. Consumers got a taste of what competition can bring and will start to demand more thanks to the pure power of market competition.”

The taste of faster broadband is something echoed in India and there are forces in the market pushing for the necessary level of competition.

“Both mobile and fixed broadband internet in India are getting faster, that’s good news for all Indian consumers no matter which operator or plan they use to access the internet. India still has a long way to go to catch up with countries that have top speeds around the world, however, we at Ookla are highly optimistic about the capacity for growth that is available in the Indian market and look forward to watching how the market grows in this coming new year,” said Doug Suttles, Co-Founder and General Manager at Ookla in a press statement.

A big part of India’s connectivity depends on the ability to develop an adequate infrastructure, not only enabling more rural and sparsely populated areas access, but updating the system for the latest technologies. The Department of Telecommunications is set to meet on the topic of rolling out 5G and aims to penetrate half of the Indian market over the next seven years. 

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