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The UK's broadband speeds are "very respectable", despite falling some way short of those available in the Far East, it has been claimed.

David Belson, director of market intelligence at Akamai Technologies, said that theoretically, the average connection in the UK is capable of 20Mb downloads.

This is a relatively strong average peak connection speed, he suggested.

However, Mr Belson conceded that the likes of South Korea, Japan and Hong Kong do have a significant lead on the UK - and most European countries.

Reasons for this include government support, very attractive service pricing and high population density, he noted.

The latter makes it easier to reach a large number of citizens with high speed internet connectivity, Mr Belson said.

"Even with investments in improving broadband infrastructure within the UK, services/subscriptions will have to be priced at affordable levels to drive uptake," he commented.

BT aims to launch up to 330Mb broadband services in the UK next month, which could help increase the nation's average download speeds.

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