According to this article dated July 30 2019, the island nation of Madagascar has faster internet than the United Kingdom.

If you only know Madagascar because of that animated penguins film, you've not been using the Internet properly. But that is understandable, because the African island nation has faster Internet speeds than you in the UK, France, or Canada.

Question: Is it true that Madagascar has faster internet speeds than the United Kingdom?

  • 1
    The question is unanswerable, because the speed of any particular internet connection is different to any other, and any national averaging methodology needs to be defined and may in any case not be useful. At home (UK) I could pay for 88Mbps but don't need (or pay for) more than 20. The business I work for could have Gbit fibre to the premises but doesn't need that. OTOH a colleague until recently got only 4Mbps to his house which dropped lower, often to zero, when it rained! (His tiny village is now upgraded and he now has 88mbps).
    – nigel222
    Commented Aug 27, 2019 at 11:14
  • 1
    Given that 13% of the population has access to electricity and only 2.1% has access to the internet, the claim is essentially meaningless.
    – Strawberry
    Commented Aug 27, 2019 at 11:50

2 Answers 2


That might be true in 2017, or at the beginning of the 2018 when UK analytics firm Cable published its speed table. Right now you can check the stats live.

And although Madagascar is still "faster" than UK only 7% of its population have access to the internet (compared to 94.6% in UK) according to this page.

  • 1
    For reference: the map indicates that in 2018, Madagascar was indeed faster than the UK, France, and Canada, as the article claims; but as of 2019 it's only faster than the UK.
    – F1Krazy
    Commented Aug 26, 2019 at 11:01
  • 60
    Note: seems to be based on mean average speeds at the home router. Therefore high average means many with fast home internet, and also, few with slow home internet. UK has many rural areas where most households have home broadband, but it is relatively slow with old infrastructure. I believe that in Madagascar, most people use relatively slow 3G (not counted in the stats), and home broadband, while fast with modern infrastructure, is expensive and relatively rare. Commented Aug 26, 2019 at 11:07
  • 3
    What about latency from the distance the packets need to travel? I have a feeling that there are more servers in/near the UK than Madagascar, so I wonder how that would affect the speeds.
    – Laurel
    Commented Aug 26, 2019 at 14:59
  • 4
    It should be noted that Madagascar is an outlier among African nations in the Cable.co.uk ranking, with only South Africa and Kenya (besides Madagascar) in the top 100. And in the internet world stats link, Madagascar has one of the smallest internet penetration percentages among African countries, 9.8%, well below the African average of 39.5% (or the world average of 62.4%). Also its internet growth rate was slower than the total African one between 2000 and 2019. So it really seems to be a statistically inflated result. Commented Aug 26, 2019 at 20:22
  • 1
    @laurel You'll have to go on to superuser.se or maybe unix.se for a longer explanation, but for now take my word for it that nowadays that factor is negligible compared to the others. Commented Aug 27, 2019 at 7:29

As of July 2019 according to the Speedtest.net Global Index , Madagascar (unranked mobile, rank 68 fixed) ranks below all of the 3 listed countries: United Kingdom (rank 50 mobile, rank 41 fixed), France (rank 18 mobile, rank 15 fixed) and Canada (rank 6 mobile, rank 12 fixed).

Even in 2017 (August 2017 Wayback Machine data), it still ranks below all of the 3 tested countries.

Other speed test trackers such as Netflix ISP Speed Index don't track Madagascar.

Only one source put Madagascar above the other countries, that being the Cable.co.uk dataset which was summarised by Fastmetrics. In the summary, you can see that Madagascar only had ~4000 datapoints out of the 163 million speed tests, which is the likely cause of the inflated ranking. The Speedtest.net results also show a similar lack of results, with most months lacking enough data for a ranking.

It's unlikely that the average Malagasy had faster internet speeds than any of the 3 listed countries, considering the statistically insignificant number of results.

  • 1
    correct, and the few datapoints come probably from government offices and what few business hotels have internet at all, in the capital, right next to a major datacenter with a backbone connection.
    – jwenting
    Commented Aug 28, 2019 at 8:42

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .