Rhode Island ranks as America's fastest broadband speed state, says study

National Broadband Map
The majority of the top 10 states are located on the East Coast.

If you’re looking for the state that has the best broadband speeds, look no further than Rhode Island. The New England state, according to data compiled by Cable.co.uk, has an average speed of 36.7 Mbps.

The rankings, based on new data extracted and compiled by Cable.co.uk from over 42 million U.S. speed tests, reveal the difference in the average broadband speed across the United States.

These 42 million speed tests were collected across the 12 months up to May 10 this year by M-Lab, a partnership between New America's Open Technology Institute, Google Open Source Research, Princeton University's PlanetLab, other supporting partners, and compiled and extracted by consumer broadband analysts at Cable.co.uk.

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According to the analysis, the majority of the top 10 states are located on the East Coast, apart from Oregon and Washington. Further, Western states California and Nevada also have high average download speeds.

Ranking State code State Mean download speed Number of distinct IPs Total number of tests Time to download a large HD movie (7.5GB) HH:MM:SS
1 RI Rhode Island 36.69 20584 94926 00:27:54
2 WA Washington 34.25 282291 1387561 00:29:54
3 MA Massachusetts 34.06 165865 870177 00:30:04
4 MD Maryland 33.23 107717 552141 00:30:49
5 VA Virginia 32.72 206238 955755 00:31:18
6 NJ New Jersey 32.57 196650 6491602 00:31:27
7 OR Oregon 32.16 154083 612642 00:31:51
8 NY New York 30.22 455707 2166140 00:33:53
9 DC Washington, D.C. 30.07 23904 171566 00:34:03
10 DE Delaware 29.78 17767 77834 00:34:23
11 CT Connecticut 27.73 85630 469736 00:36:55
12 NV Nevada 26.04 75532 326434 00:39:19
13 CA California 26.00 1192996 6271684 00:39:23
14 TX Texas 24.82 602462 3079792 00:41:15
15 PA Pennsylvania 24.56 250544 1086481 00:41:41
16 FL Florida 24.34 464310 2117592 00:42:04
17 KS Kansas 23.95 65906 271902 00:42:45
18 NH New Hampshire 23.55 37452 155100 00:43:29
19 MN Minnesota 22.48 176106 727401 00:45:33
20 OK Oklahoma 22.14 84513 383418 00:46:15
21 MO Missouri 21.55 139103 578715 00:47:32
22 AZ Arizona 21.18 230068 912714 00:48:20
23 NC North Carolina 21.15 248103 1045951 00:48:25
24 IL Illinois 20.47 304895 1575553 00:50:02
25 CO Colorado 20.01 205058 859590 00:51:10
26 LA Louisiana 19.20 78270 347591 00:53:20
27 GA Georgia 19.12 231384 1189625 00:53:34
28 TN Tennessee 18.92 136472 609283 00:54:08
29 ND North Dakota 18.89 17766 70023 00:54:13
30 IN Indiana 18.61 142057 612558 00:55:01
31 UT Utah 18.29 119475 446286 00:56:00
32 VT Vermont 17.82 22387 88555 00:57:28
33 MI Michigan 17.58 234002 1019035 00:58:16
34 AL Alabama 17.49 83017 364955 00:58:32
35 SD South Dakota 17.38 15961 64901 00:58:55
36 SC South Carolina 17.34 89056 370823 00:59:04
37 WI Wisconsin 17.23 131234 527836 00:59:27
38 IA Iowa 17.05 96049 389940 01:00:04
39 AR Arkansas 16.45 58826 255822 01:02:14
40 NE Nebraska 15.92 56789 206696 01:04:19
41 NM New Mexico 15.34 55996 214109 01:06:45
42 WV West Virginia 15.11 32789 118093 01:07:45
43 OH Ohio 13.83 245856 1058934 01:14:01
44 HI Hawaii 13.69 26739 111690 01:14:46
45 KY Kentucky 13.15 90043 338379 01:17:52
46 MS Mississippi 12.99 36730 158297 01:18:50
47 ID Idaho 12.71 49522 178327 01:20:34
48 AK Alaska 11.99 20614 67115 01:25:22
49 WY Wyoming 11.89 13866 55885 01:26:08
50 ME Maine 11.73 29940 109770 01:27:20
51 MT Montana 10.94 25326 97954 01:33:36
Source: M-Lab            

Researchers noted that there were marked contrasts between cities across America, even those in the same states.

The study also measured the states and places with the lowest broadband speeds. From a state basis, Montana came in last with an average speed of 10.94 Mbps. Meanwhile, the slowest city for download speeds was Southerly North Slope Bo, Alaska, with a download speed of 0.28 Mbps.

What the disparities in speed show is that downloading an HD movie in Rhode Island would take 27 minutes and 54 seconds, but in Montana it would take 1 hour and 33 minutes, which is more than three times as long. 

"Urban areas, particularly on the coasts, have exceptional access compared to the Midwest and rural areas, reflecting social, geographic, and economic divides," said Collin Anderson, independent researcher at M-Lab, in a release. 

Anderson added that by using "Cable.co.uk's continued investigation, we can start to paint an important picture about how the internet differs for people across locations and over time."