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The UK has fallen behind many of its economic rivals in terms of super-fast broadband provision, it has been reported.

According to the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, the UK ranks 21st out of 30 countries surveyed based upon connection speeds.

Japanese consumers are said to benefit from the highest advertised speed – a huge 1Gb – with Finland next in line with 110Mb.

Broadband subscribers in Sweden, South Korea, Iceland, France and Denmark are all reported to have access to 100Mb services.

The UK performed slightly better in terms of broadband penetration, experiencing greater coverage than 17 other nations.

However, most next-generation broadband users still access such services via Digital Subscriber Line technology rather than fibre.

Last week, research conducted by Eurostat, the Statistical Office of the European Communities, found that broadband penetration is continuing to rise across Europe.

Some 65 per cent of households subscribed to internet services during the first quarter of 2009, up from the figure of 60 per cent recorded 12 months earlier.

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