Latin America data speeds continue to lag behind more-developed regions. But many nations in the region have been rapidly improving their network infrastructure in recent years, with eight nations in South America now providing speeds of 3G or better 80% of the time, according to a recent analysis by Open Signal.
With an average data speed of 8.07 megabytes per second, Colombia ranks fourth in Latin America, trailing only Uruguay (10.21 mbps), Peru (9.11), and Chile (8.77). Users in Colombia are able to access 3G or better speeds 84.6% of the time. By comparison, Chile ranks first in the region at 91%, the United States comes in at 92%, and South Korea boasts a near-perfect 99%.
Latin America Data Speeds
“In general, South America’s data networks are behind much of the developed world in speed, with all nations, save Uruguay, providing an average mobile data speed less than 10 mbps,” wrote Open Signal in a blog post. “But most of South America did admirably in terms of 3G/4G signal availability.”
Among large Latin American nations — those with more than 20 million people — only Peru outperformed Colombia. Mexico offers comparable speeds at 7.93 mpbs, but Brazil (7.43), Argentina (6.52), and Venezuela (3.88) all fare considerably worse. Brazil also can only offer 3G or better speeds 75.2% of the time. “Having a large population or economic influence had little bearing on countries’ performance in the region,” wrote Open Signal.
Colombia also stacked up well in another recent study, Spanish telecom Telefónica’s “Index on Digital Life.” Though not looking strictly at Latin America data speeds, the analysis ranked the Andean nation among the world’s best in terms of digital development and policies aimed towards further improvement. “Colombia is Latin America’s most outstanding over-performer in digital life relative to its GDP per capita,” said the study.
Despite its standing the Telefónica report still highlighted how much room remains for improvement. Colombia lagged behind Brazil, Argentina, and Chile on digital adoption rates and ranked below Chile, Costa Rica, and Uruguay on privacy and security. It also compared poorly to its regional peers when it comes to business application of ICT technology and software spending.