US states with fastest Internet access

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In a ranking of Internet speeds by state, Virginia had the fastest average Internet speed of 13.7 Mbps during Q1 2014, revealed Akamai’s latest “State of the Internet” report.

With 13.1 Mbps, Delaware and Massachusetts were tied in second place. Completing the top five are Rhode Island and the District of Columbia with average speeds of 12.9 and 12.8 Mbps respectively.

Meanwhile, New York clinched 14th place, and the 20th position was occupied by California. Placing near the bottom, Montana, Arkansas and Kentucky all recorded an average speed of 7.3 Mbps, whereas Alaska had the lowest Internet speed of 7 Mbps.

Generally, the East Coast of the United States posted the fastest connection speeds, said Akamai.

In terms of growth, all US states saw better average Internet speeds except for Virginia, where connection speed fell 4.3 per cent from Q4 2013.

“[Increases in Internet speed] are important because as we start to do more online, there are going to be more devices online competing for a fixed amount of bandwidth,” said David Belson, Senior Director for Industry & Data Intelligence at Akamai Technologies.

“Over the last five years or so, we’ve moved from being basically shackled to our TVs to being able to watch things like Netflix or Hulu or YouTube,” he added.

Furthermore, even the lowest speeds are sufficient for streaming videos at the aforementioned websites. In fact, only 5 Mbps is needed for watching high-definition content at Netflix, 3 Mbps for Hulu HD, and just 1-2 Mbps for casual web browsing.

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