The analysis covered WiFi roaming, network latency, and locations of where citizens abroad had the fastest and slowest mobile download speeds. This project was an expansion of a previous study of download speeds in Europe from last year, which focused solely on speeds within the European Union.
Speedtest found that Europeans generally experience slower download speeds while roaming than when at home. This can vary widely, depending on a variety of factors, including country of origin, destination country, and which specific provider and plan are being used.
While this general assessment held true for most countries in Europe, there were some notable exceptions, including the UK, Portugal, Ireland, Italy, Montenegro, Estonia, Latvia, Poland, and Slovenia. In these ten, download speeds while roaming abroad were faster than speeds at home. In addition, some countries’ roaming download speeds were far worse than others. The Czech Republic, for example, had notably far worse speeds abroad in particular.
Speedtest also found that roaming speeds were dependent on the user’s destination. This factor caused wide discrepancies in the speeds available. Using the example of the UK, citizens abroad experience speeds at 41.34 Mbps in France, 32.39 Mbps in Germany, and 30.84 Mbps at home.
In the analysis, Speedtest also evaluated the frequency with which both residents and those from different countries chose to use WiFi rather than roaming data. In general, most Europeans opt for WiFi over roaming. Speedtest also found that network latency, or a delay in communication over a given network, increases significantly when a user is on roaming data rather than WiFi.
For some, this is a larger problem than others, with Cyprus, Kazakhstan, Iceland, Russia, and Malta experiencing the highest amounts of latency in the developed world.