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S. Korea Widens Lead in Broadband Quality
Source: koreaherald.com
Source Date: Monday, October 18, 2010
Focus: Institution and HR Management
Country: Korea (Republic of)
Created: Oct 25, 2010

Korea extended its worldwide fixed-line broadband Internet leadership and the U.S. held onto joint 15th place as the technology’s speed and availability expanded, according to a poll carried out by Cisco Systems Inc. Korea, which has 100 percent broadband penetration, topped Cisco’s list for the third year in a row. Fixed-line customers’ broadband access in the U.S., which shared its ranking with four nations, rose to 75 percent this year from 69 percent in 2009, Cisco said in a statement. Internet-download speeds in Korea increased by 55 percent from a year earlier, said Cisco, the largest maker of routers and switches that direct Web traffic over networks. While the U.S. improved its broadband quality, it won’t be fully prepared for technologies such as high-definition Internet television being developed by Apple Inc. and Google Inc. until next year, Fernando Gil de Bernabe, senior director at Cisco, said in a phone interview from Oxford, England. The broadband-quality rankings, developed by San Jose, California-based Cisco and the University of Oxford, measure the proportion of households and businesses with access to broadband, combined with Internet-connection speeds. The global quality score rose 24 percent, Cisco said. The U.S. held joint 15th place with France, Canada and Latvia. The U.K. declined one position to share 18th place with Germany and Estonia, as the list was expanded by six countries to 72 nations. Israel ranked 17th. Britain will “jump in leadership” next year as broadband providers roll out high-speed fiber networks, de Bernabe said. BT Group Plc, the U.K.’s largest phone company, is rolling out a high-speed broadband network. London-based BT said in May that it will spend 2.5 billion pounds ($4 billion) on a fiber network serving two-thirds of the country’s homes by 2015. Competitor Virgin Media Inc. is preparing to introduce 100 megabits-per-second broadband at the end of this year.
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