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Toronto and Ottawa top ranking of Canadian Internet performance

Ottawa, ON – April 28, 2016 – New data from the Canadian Internet Registration Authority measures Internet speed and quality   
By Tanya O'Callaghan
Senior Manager, Communications

Ottawa, ON – April 28, 2016New data from the Canadian Internet Registration Authority measures Internet speed and quality 


Ottawa, ON – April 28, 2016 As Canadians debate the future of Canadian broadband subsidies at CRTC hearings in Gatineau, Quebec, the Canadians Internet Registration Authority (CIRA) has released new data on how Canadians experience Internet speed and quality across the country. 
This data was generated from 126,000 tests crowdsourced from individual Canadian Internet users. 
Download the full report from

Key findings from the report:

  • Upload speeds need more attention: As more users shift from passive consumers to active producers of content, Canadian Internet users should be sure to pay attention to the upload speeds in their community. The use of cloud-based back-up (like Google Drive or OneDrive) and video sharing services (like Periscope or YouTube) require significant upload bandwidth. 
  • Western cities lag behind: Toronto, Ottawa, and Montreal top the list, while Vancouver, Victoria, Surrey, Edmonton, Winnipeg, and Regina all landed in the bottom half of the ranking. 
  • Rural and northern communities need strong services: CIRA’s data only includes rural households that have an Internet connection (an inherent bias of an online test). These tests had an average download speed of 14.81 Mbps, which although seemingly strong is still 24 per cent behind the urban national average. Rural communities are also more likely to experience quality issues such as higher ping and jitter. 
  • Provincial data exposes a bright spot in Atlantic Canada: Canada’s provinces and territories did not perform equally. New Brunswick leads the way with an average download of 26.98 Mbps and an average upload speed of 12.39 Mbps. The Yukon Territory has the lowest average speeds at 6.68 Mbps.
  • Cities do not have homogeneous experience: In parsing out data for one Canadian city, CIRA found that a city’s core can have significantly different results from its suburbs. This data should be of use to municipal officials as they work to understand the dynamics of Internet performance in their jurisdictions. 
Understanding how Canadian users experience service in their homes and offices is an important first step in improving Canada’s Internet performance. CIRA’s test is designed in the public interest, measuring Internet performance in real network conditions – including network congestion and complex global data routes. 

Executive quote

What we want to see is a better online Canada. Where Canada not only competes with, but tops the global leaders in access speed, quality, and data sovereignty.  CIRA launched the Internet performance test and is beginning a series of stories to educate Canadians, policy makers, and organizations on how the Internet really works so they can make informed decisions and improvements.

Byron Holland, President and CEO of the Canadian Internet Registration Authority

Additional resources

  • Take the test – Users can test their connection’s performance and help build-out this data set at