updated 06:58 pm EST, Tue December 11, 2012
Google Fiber tops Verizon FiOS, Comcast
For the first time, Netflix has published data on ISP streaming performance, showing that Google Fiber significantly outperforms its other nationally-active competitors. Netflix's figures give the average speed at which customers of different ISPs can download movies, and it notes whether ISPs have moved up or down in the rankings in the last month. Google Fiber leads the pack with 2.55MBps, with Verizon's FiOS and Comcast significantly behind.
Rounding out the top ten in order were Charter, Cablevision, Mediacom, TimeWarner Cable, BrightHouse, Cox, and Suddenlink. Verizon's FiOS was the closest to Google Fiber with an average speed of 2.19MBps, but the 0.36MBps gap between Google and Verizon was more than three times the 0.11MBps gap between Verizon and tenth place Suddenlink.
Netflix's figures showed that cable providers were offering better downloading performance than DSL providers. The figures also showed Verizon's mobile network significantly outperforming AT&T's mobile network.
The figures are averages, meaning that actual performance may vary depending on location. Google Fiber is also located only in one metropolitan area, which likely has an impact on its performance versus competitors with a larger service area. Netflix notes that the average performance is well below the peak performance due to factors including home Wi-Fi, device differences, and a variety of encodes. The relative ranking, though, should accurately indicate relative bandwidth and performance across providers.