People in the UK watched more TV and sent more texts than people in many other countries, but had slower broadband, according to new research. The study, from telecoms watchdog Ofcom, found the UK remains the country with the highest proportion of households with digital TV on their main set – at 88%. The Ofcom study compared the UK with 12 countries including France, Spain, Germany, Italy and the US.
The Netherlands, Sweden, Poland, Japan and the Irish Republic were among the other countries included in the study. The report also looked at the communications markets in four “emerging countries,” namely Brazil, Russia, India and China. It found the UK had seen the highest average rise in TV viewing in 2008, up by 3.2% to 3.8 hours a day.
The average time spent watching TV was 3.5 hours per day across the European countries surveyed, although average viewing time fell in France and Germany.
The UK’s viewing figures were slightly lower than those for Italy, Poland and Spain.
And people in the US watched the most television in 2008 – an average of 4.6 hours a day, which was up 1.8% from 2007.
The survey also found that the UK was the second highest texting nation in the world, with the volume of outgoing messages estimated to be 83 billion in the year.
That was second only to the US, where 830 billion text messages were sent.
UK consumers also enjoy the cheapest prices for mobile phones and broadband, while the country also leads the world in online advertising.
However, the UK’s broadband speeds were not impressive when compared with other countries, Ofcom said.
Only 10% of UK homes could connect at over 8 megabits (Mbps) a second, compared with 37% in the Netherlands.
People in Sweden and France also had much faster speeds than those in the UK.
To read the full Ofcom report (PDF) click here