Cost of staying connected: Global differences revealed

Posted May 3, 2020 by Tim Sandle
The coronavirus pandemic and the lockdown has increased the global demand for digital technology and data transfer. While speed varies considerably between countries, so does the price that citizens pay. A new study looks at the differences.
Safer Internet Day looks to promote internet safety through various organizations and stakeholders  ...
Safer Internet Day looks to promote internet safety through various organizations and stakeholders, with a particular emphasis on young people.
Photo by rawpixel on Unsplash
Socializing, learning and even streaming are well established as the main reasons why most people cannot seem to put down humanity's new best friend; the smartphone. Add to this the reliance upon remote working and home working as a consequence of the coronavirus pandemic (as reported by The Guardian), the sum total of social and work activities can consume huge amounts of data which can leave many users with a hefty bill.
But how much data does it cost in every country and are to what extent are people paying way more than others for 1GB of data? A new study by Business Fibre highlights the pricing of data in different destinations to reveal the countries where surfing the net is the most and least expensive. The new study is titled 'The Cost To Stay Connected by Business Fibre'.
With data transfer speeds, the global average download speed for mobile data is 31.61Mbps, whilst the average upload speed is 11.29Mbps2.
In terms of the price that businesses and consumers are paying, the study reveals that the lowest cost for data is Israel, with 1GB data only costing around 50 cents. This means that Israel comes out on top as the cheapest place to stay connected.
With the UK, the country comes in 14th place for the most expensive country for data. The cost of 1GB data is around $8, while the average download speeds for mobile data in the UK is 35.21 Mbps that’s 1.5 times faster than Israel (22.63 Mbps).
For the U.S., the country has some 21 mobile plans available and over 70 different broadband plans. The average cost for 1GB data is $13, which makes it the fourth most expensive country. Canada does not fare well, either, coming in as the sixth most expensive country, at around $12.50.
However, coming top in the data transfer stakes is Switzerland. Here the average cost of data is around $20, which is 22 times more expensive than Israel. With 12 mobile plans at hand, the average mobile upload speed is 19.91 Mbps.