March 30, 2009 - Akamai Releases Fourth Quarterly "State of the Internet" Report

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Jennifer Donovan
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  • Close to 20% of the world's Internet users are connecting at speeds greater than 5 Mbps
  • U.S. ranks highest in percentage of observed attack traffic
  • East Coast of U.S. continues to have highest penetration of high broadband connections
  • South Korea again ranks as country with highest percentage of connections at high broadband speeds, with average connection speed of 15 Mbps - 10x the global average
  • Akamai announces its 5th data visualization tool, tracking average connection speeds on a global basis

CAMBRIDGE, MA - MARCH 30, 2009 - Akamai Technologies, Inc. (NASDAQ: AKAM), the leader in powering rich media, dynamic transactions and enterprise applications online, today announced the release of the fourth edition of its quarterly State of the Internet report available for download at www.akamai.com/stateoftheinternet. Leveraging published reports and information gathered from its network, Akamai's quarterly report provides insight into key Internet statistics such as origin of attack traffic, network outages and broadband connectivity levels across the globe.

As the Company's fourth published edition, the report also now provides a full-year view, as well as a quarterly view, into trends. Those trends include:

Attack Traffic
During the fourth quarter of 2008, Akamai observed attack traffic originating from 193 unique countries around the world, up nearly 8% from the third quarter count of 179 countries. In the fourth quarter, the United States moved into first place for the first time in 2008, after placing second to either China or Japan throughout the year. Throughout 2008, the United States, China, Taiwan, South Korea, and Japan were consistently among the top 10 countries that generated the highest percentages of attack traffic.

Broadband Connectivity
Through its globally-deployed server network, and by virtue of the billions of requests for Web content that it services on a daily basis, Akamai has a unique level of visibility into the connection speeds of those systems issuing the requests, and as such, of broadband adoption around the globe. In the fourth quarter of 2008, the State of the Internet report began tracking average connection speeds for countries around the world. Globally, the average connection speed was approximately 1.5 Mbps. South Korea had the fastest average connection speed, at 15 Mbps, and the U.S. ranked 17th globally, with an average connection speed of 3.9 Mbps, up approximately 8% from the average connection speed for the first quarter of 2008.

Current highlights and historical trends for average connection speeds on a global basis can be found in Akamai's new data visualization tool, available at http://www.akamai.com/dv5. This "Global Broadband Adoption" tool has been added to Akamai's suite of data visualization tools, available at http://www.akamai.com/html/technology/visualizing_akamai.html, which include views into global attack traffic, network latency and packet loss, and traffic on the Akamai network, as well as Akamai's popular Net Usage Indices for Retail, News and Music.

In the fourth quarter of 2008, only six countries connected to Akamai's network at average speeds in excess of 5 Mbps, and for the year, many countries showed significant increases in their levels of high broadband (>5 Mbps) adoption. Looking back over all of 2008, the average connection speeds of most users across the U.S. saw nominal to significant increases in their average broadband speed, with Nebraska and Kentucky seeing a 33% improvement from the first quarter to the fourth quarter.

Fastest International Countries
At the end of 2008, approximately 19% of Internet connections around the world were at speeds greater than 5 Mbps, representing a 21% increase over the average global connection speed at the end of 2007. In line with their average connection speed of 15 Mbps, and their appearance at the top of the list for the prior three quarters, South Korea once again ranked as the country with the highest percentage of connections at high broadband (>5 Mbps) speeds. Looking at the levels of high broadband penetration in the fourth quarter, South Korea, Sweden, the Netherlands, Denmark, and Norway had more high broadband IP's per capita than in the prior quarter. This is consistent with what would be expected from the initiatives to bring higher-speed connectivity, including Fiber-to-the-Home efforts, to consumers in these countries.

Fastest U.S. States
The U.S. saw a minor decline in the percentage of connections to Akamai at speeds above 5 Mbps, though the level of high broadband adoption was up 27% for the year. It's not clear what caused the decline in the fourth quarter, although published reports indicate that many consumers, in order to save money, would scale down their broadband service (to a lower speed tier), rather than cancelling it outright. Maintaining the trend from the prior three quarters of 2008, the East Coast of the U.S. was once again well represented in the top 10 list of U.S. states with the greatest levels of high broadband (>5 Mbps) connectivity, taking seven of the top 10 slots.

Akamai's unique level of visibility into the connection speeds of systems issuing requests to the Akamai network has created a one-of-a-kind view into broadband adoption around the globe. Leveraging that data, Akamai's quarterly State of the Internet report identifies both the countries and U.S. states with the fastest and slowest average connection speeds exhibited by IP addresses originating from those respective geographies. To learn more, and to access the archive of past reports, please visit www.akamai.com/stateoftheinternet.

The Akamai Difference
Akamai® provides market-leading managed services for powering rich media, dynamic transactions, and enterprise applications online. Having pioneered the content delivery market one decade ago, Akamai's services have been adopted by the world's most recognized brands across diverse industries. The alternative to centralized Web infrastructure, Akamai's global network of tens of thousands of distributed servers provides the scale, reliability, insight and performance for businesses to succeed online. Akamai has transformed the Internet into a more viable place to inform, entertain, interact, and collaborate. To experience The Akamai Difference, visit www.akamai.com.
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