YouGov survey: 28 per cent experience slower broadband during lockdown

According to a new YouGov survey of 2,301 adults in the UK, 28 per cent have experienced a “slightly worse” internet connection than usual during the COVID-19 lockdown. 7 per cent of those polled said that their broadband had been “much worse” but 57 per cent said that they had seen no change.

Among those saying they had experienced broadband issues, 69 per cent reported that connectivity troubles affected their general activities online, 67 per cent said that it impacted their video streaming, 59 per cent said their video calls had been affected and 52 per cent reported that it had had an effect on their work.

However, 73 per cent of adults surveyed said that they had been using their broadband more than usual during lockdown, due to working from home or home schooling etc. Regulator Ofcom said that broadband speeds had largely remained consistent but have experienced much higher demand. An Ofcom spokesperson said that this “can mean some services slow down even on a good connection”.

YouGov’s Digital Media Research Manager Olivia Bonito commented: “New YouGov research shows that the internet had become even more important to daily life during the coronavirus lockdown, with Britons using their household broadband connection for entertainment and to work from home.”

“Of course this means that many are now using their internet much more than usual but a significant proportion – a third – are experiencing worse internet performance than they did prior to the lockdown.”

“This difficulty in accessing stable internet increases as the number of household residents rises, suggesting internet performance is being affected by increased demand. While many might be able to cope in the short term, it could start to affect productivity if working from home becomes the ‘new normal’.”

Till Sommer, Internet Services Providers’ Association Head of Policy, said that “despite this large increase in usage, the network has proved to be resilient and continues to provide vital support for the public through this difficult period.”

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