Consumers typically have fast connections to online gaming servers over home broadband connections, with NSW and ACT gamers enjoying the best experience, according to the ACCC’s latest Measuring Broadband Australia report which for the first time measured Australians’ online experience for gaming services.

The report found that latency to Australian servers for popular online games like Fortnite and League of Legends averaged 15 to 30 milliseconds per test on different NBN fixed-line technologies. This means users generally have a good gaming experience, with minimal stuttering or lag.

Latency refers to the time it takes to send data from a user’s device to a server and back. Higher latency means there are delays in sending and receiving data, which can be disruptive to a consumers gaming experience.

The report found that a key influence on gaming experience is the distance to gaming servers, with latency increasing when the server is further away. Australians playing online games where the server is located overseas may notice a lag or have a poor gaming experience.

In comparison, when a gaming server is located in Australia the latency is lower. Gamers in NSW and the ACT enjoyed the lowest latency for gaming servers located in Australia, averaging between 10 and 20 milliseconds across various games, due to most Australian gaming servers being in Sydney. The average latency increased for these games when measured from states further away from Sydney, reaching over 50 milliseconds in WA.

"While fibre to the premises and fibre to the curb connections generally had the lowest latency, all fixed-line access technologies had relatively low latency for games hosted in Australia. Consumers on fixed wireless connections experienced higher latency than those using fixed-line technologies. This is expected given the nature of fixed wireless technology," ACCC Commissioner Anna Brakey said.

Intermittent disconnections, or 'outages', may also disrupt online gaming experience. Consumers looking to improve their gaming experience should talk to their broadband provider about options to improve the stability of their connection.

The report has also shown that latency does not depend on the selected speed tier, which means that upgrading to a faster plan will not necessarily improve a consumer’s gaming experience.

"We encourage consumers to consider the cost and quality of the various retail plans available and choose the plan that represents the best value to them," Ms Brakey said.

Chart 1. Average latency to various online gaming servers

This chart shows results from all hours for all NBN fixed-line services excluding the very high speed services.

  • Server location(s):
  • Asia
  • Asia & North America
  • Australia
  • North America

Chart 2. Average latency to Australian gaming servers

Except where otherwise indicated, these charts show results from all hours for all NBN fixed-line services excluding the very high speed services.

NBN fixed-line and fixed wireless performance remain steady

NBN fixed-line broadband retailers continue to meet their advertised speed claims, even during the busiest hours. In December 2022, NBN fixed-line services achieved an average download speed of 99.1 per cent of plan speed across all hours, dropping to 97.7 per cent during the busy hours (weekdays from 7-11pm). This result is in line with the corresponding figures of 99.7 per cent and 98.2 per cent in the last report from August 2022.

Broadband retailers included in the report met their advertised speed claims between 88 and 98 per cent of the busy hours in December 2022.

"This is a positive result for consumers as it means they can have confidence that they will enjoy the speeds that they pay for when selecting a fixed-line broadband plan," Ms Brakey said.

Upload speeds on NBN fixed-line services remained largely steady, delivering on average 85.0 per cent of plan speed during the busy hours compared to 85.7 per cent in the previous quarter. Upload speed performance is consistently below download speed performance as NBN Co does not overprovision the upload component of its speed tiers, as it does with download.

NBN fixed-wireless services delivered strong average download and upload speeds, consistent with the previous quarter and among the highest results seen during their inclusion in the Measuring Broadband Australia program.

The results for NBN’s very high-speed services (known as NBN Home Ultrafast) were in line with results from previous reports, with download speeds showing a slight improvement during busy hours.

Other superfast networks performing well

This report reintroduced results for the Uniti Group’s superfast networks. These networks comprise mostly of fibre to the premise connections and delivered 101 per cent of plan download speed and 89 per cent of plan upload speed on average during busy hours.

Smaller retailers continue to deliver high speeds

Smaller retailers continue to deliver strong performance in high download speeds for consumers. Two of the top three retail service providers for average busy hour download speeds in this report were smaller providers, not part of the four largest retail service providers.

"The results of some of the smaller retailers reaffirms that they can provide similar, if not better, performance than the larger telcos which is good for competition," Ms Brakey said.

"This also reflects the findings in the recent NBN Wholesale Market Indicators Report, which found that smaller providers were gaining market share from the larger providers."

Note to editors

Games hosted on servers located in Asia and North America recorded latencies exceeding 100 milliseconds. Some games may not require low latency to ensure a quality experience.

The goal of the Measuring Broadband Australia quarterly reports is to encourage greater performance-based competition and better internet performance throughout the country, while increasing transparency amongst consumers.

Maximum plan speed refers to the download data rate associated with the retail NBN plan. For example, on an NBN100 plan, the nominal maximum download speed is 100 Mbps. It is possible for consumers to receive this speed, or slightly above, as NBN Co overprovisions the downlink of some products by 10-15 per cent.

NBN fixed-line services and NBN fixed wireless services utilise different technologies that are not directly comparable in terms of performance. The quality and maximum speed of a fixed wireless connection is often more variable than fixed-line technology. More information on fixed wireless performance can be found on the ACCC website.


The ACCC encourages other superfast access network operators to support the Measuring Broadband Australia program and contact the ACCC if they are interested in joining. The Federal Government funded the ACCC to run a national broadband performance monitoring and reporting program from 2017-25.

Data for Measuring Broadband Australia is provided by UK-based firm SamKnows using methodology based on established speed testing programs in the UK, US, Canada and New Zealand.

To sign up, visit Measuring Broadband Australia