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These Cities Have the Fastest, Slowest Internet in Rural America

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The Atlanta suburb of Hampton, Georgia.boasts the fastest internet of any rural US city while Newcastle, California has the slowest, according to SatelliteInternet.com.

The Why Axis 10 fastest and slowest cities for rural internet

Clocking an average speed of 113.6 Megabits per second (Mbps), the Atlanta suburb of Hampton, Georgia. boasts the fastest internet of any rural city in the US, according to a new report from SatelliteInternet.com.

Based on an analysis of more than one million US internet speed tests, SatelliteInternet.com says the national average is 43.8 Mbps. But in rural cities (defined as having a population of less than 10,000 people and being geographically removed from an urban city), speeds are slower: 39.01 Mbps, on average.

However, some rural cities offer standout speeds that blow the national average out of the water. Following Hampton, Ga., here are the rural cities with the fastest internet, based on the site’s speed tests: Haymarket, Va. (93.1 Mbps); New Market, Md. (89.4 Mbps); Aliquippa, Pa. (82 Mbps); Warrenton, Va. (79.6 Mbps); Downingtown, Pa. (78.7 Mbps); Roanoke, Texas (77 Mbps); Harleysville, Pa. (76.9 Mbps); Red Lion, Pa. (74.6 Mbps), and Woodbridge, Va. (72.4 Mbps).

“East Coast states, on average, have faster internet speeds than anywhere else in the country,” the folks at SatelliteInternet.com wrote in a blog post. “Maryland has the fastest statewide average speed with 65 Mbps, and Virginia comes in third with an average of 59.3 Mbps. So it makes sense that these states would be among the fastest for rural internet as well.”

On the other end of the spectrum, Newcastle, Calif. has the slowest average internet in rural America: just 3.7 Mbps. Rounding out the top 10 rural cities with the slowest internet are: Qulin, Mo. (4.3 Mbps), Spring Hill, Kan. (4.8 Mbps); Erin, Tenn. (5 Mbps); Westphalia, Mich. (5.3 Mbps); Sylva, N.C. (5.4 Mbps); Stevensville, Mont. (5.6 Mbps); Hawaiian Ocean View, Hawaii (6.2 Mbps); Trenton, Fla. (6.3 Mbps); and Nevada City, Calif. (6.7 Mbps).

“The most common reason for slow rural internet is that it’s expensive for internet providers to expand and update infrastructure, so it’s less financially motivating to expand to rural areas with fewer people,” SatelliteInternet.com wrote. “The government is trying to incentivize wider broadband rollouts to underserved areas through programs like the Connect America Fund, but there are still millions of people in rural America without access to internet fast enough to keep up with the rest of the world.”

One of the most divisive aspects of 5G network rollouts is how it will impact rural areas. Follow PCMag’s Race to 5G coverage as we track each carrier’s monthly progress nationwide.

About the Author

Angela Moscaritolo Icon

Angela MoscaritoloReporter

Angela has been a PCMag reporter since January 2012. Prior to joining the team, she worked as a reporter for SC Magazine, covering everything related to hackers and computer security. Angela has also written for The Northern Valley Suburbanite in New Jersey, The Dominion Post in West Virginia, and the Uniontown-Herald Standard in Pennsylvania. She … See Full Bio