Photo: Dan Frommer
The United States is only ranked 25th in the world in terms of Internet speed, reports the New York Times.There are some surprising countries ranked higher, like Romania, just beating out the U.S. at 24th, and South Korea, ranked 1st.
Easy access to broadband is hugely important and Jonathan Adelstein, the administrator of the federal government’s Rural Utilities Service, explains why: “This is about our overall competitiveness. Without broadband, especially in rural areas, kids might not reach their full potential. And we can’t expect to be competitive in a global economy.”
It turns out that the state with the worst connectivity is Idaho, clocking in with an average 318 kilobytes per second. Compare this to Rhode Island with an average speed of 894 kilobytes per second.
Christine L. Frei, director of the Clearwater Economic Development Association in Lewiston, Idaho, told the New York Times, “We have a guy here who was dropped into remote, isolated areas of Iraq to set up their telecommunications systems. He told me, ‘We had better communications in Iraq than you have in central Idaho.'”
With 11 federally-funded projects underway to improve broadband Internet in Idaho, let’s hope that we can move up that list a little bit.
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