Eurostat survey shows Ireland still below EU average on broadband access

Wednesday 18 December 2013 12.59
67% of Irish households have access to broadband internet compared to the EU average of 76%
67% of Irish households have access to broadband internet compared to the EU average of 76%

Ireland remains below the EU average in terms of access to broadband internet services.

New figures from the EU's statistics agency Eurostat show 67% of Irish households have access to broadband compared to the EU average of 76%.

Usage of the internet by Irish people, however, is in line with the rest of the EU. 

Just over three out of every five Irish people say they use the internet every day.

The figures represent the results of a Eurostat survey on Information and Communication Technologies usage in households and by individuals.

They show that, despite Ireland's ongoing success in attracting investment from world-leading internet companies such as Google, Facebook and eBay, the country lags significantly behind the likes of the Nordic countries and Luxembourg for internet access.

Sweden, Denmark, the Netherlands and Luxembourg all report internet access rates above 90% in the survey.

Ireland comes in at 82% which is, however, above the EU average of 79%.

Average broadband speeds increasing - ComReg

Separately, figures from the country's communications regulator ComReg show that average broadband speeds increased in the last quarter.

More than 42% of all fixed broadband subscriptions were at speeds of 10Mbps or higher, according to the regulator, compared to 31% in the same three months of 2012.

ComReg data puts broadband penetration at 65% during the quarter - slightly lower than Eurostat's figures - when mobile subscriptions are included.

Nearly three quarters of all voice and internet subscriptions were made up by mobile, with the remainder being fixed line services.

Meanwhile, the number of texts being sent has continued to decline, with fewer than 2.3 billion sent between July and September 2013, down 25% on the same period of 2012.