It’s a common complaint that we Down Under have a raw deal when it comes to broadband speed: we’re ranked an embarrassing 68th in the world.
But when it comes to broadband price, Australia is in about the middle of the pack, placing 113th among 206 countries at US $48.35 (AU $70.40) a month.
But the cheapest country in the world to be online might surprise you: Syria.
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The war-torn Middle Eastern country offers, on average, the world’s cheapest broadband packages at just US $6.60 (AU $9.61) , according to research by Cable.co.uk.
But the reason for this is largely to do with the collapse of the Syrian pound, the UK-based internet comparison website said.
For locals, it’s a high price to pay: more than 80 per cent of Syrians live below the poverty line and earn less than US $100 a month, according to UN statistics.
The internet connection is less than fast – according to Speedtest.net, Syria ranks 165th among 177 countries for broadband speed, at 7.31 Mbps on average.
Following closely behind Syria is Ukraine at US $6.64 a month, while Russia and Romania rank third and fourth at US $7.35 and US $8.15 respectively.
The most expensive country in the world to be online is East Africa’s Eritrea, at a whopping AU $21,931.23 a month.
The reason why broadband will cost so much for Eritreans is because the necessary infrastructure isn’t actually in place, explained Cable.co.uk.
“The expense comes from a combination political climate, warfare, of extremely low take-up (no economy of scale) and the fact that in most cases the price you pay will go in large part to actually building a physical line to your property since few already exist,” the website said.
“These 'works costs' rise exponentially the further your abode sits from each country's main urban centres.”
The fastest place in the world to be online is Singapore, at a whopping 200.12 Mbps.
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