Once again Akamai says the U.S. average Internet connection speed has seen a quarterly increase. The average Internet connection speed in the U.S. was 5.3 Mbps for the first quarter of 2011, reports Akamai in its latest State of the Internet report issued Tuesday.

The 5.3 Mbps average connection speed represents an increase of 4.7% over the previous quarter and a 14% increase over the same period in 2010. The percentage of U.S Internet connections made at speeds above 5 Mbps now stands at 39%, according to Akamai—an increase of 8.8% over the previous quarter and 22% over the previous year.

As usual, Delaware led all other states in average connection speed, which stood at 7.5 Mbps for the first quarter of this year. And as usual, the top 10 states were primarily in the east. In addition to Delaware; Rhode Island, New Hampshire, Connecticut, Maine and Virginia were in the Top 10.

Non-eastern states retained gains made in recent quarters, however. Indiana, California and Utah remained in the Top 10, although Nevada dropped off the list, replaced by Wisconsin.  All states in the Top 10 had average connection speeds of 5.6 Mbps or higher.

The list of the top 10 U.S. cities measured by connection speed also included many repeat names, including Riverside, CA (which retained its Number 1 position at 7.8 Mbps); Staten Island, N.Y.; Freemont, CA; Boston Metro, MA; Jersey City, N.J.; Anaheim, CA; Traverse City, MI; and Hollywood, FL.

The only new cities on the list were San Jose, CA and Marietta, GA, replacing San Mateo and Santa Barbara, CA, which dropped off the Top 10 list. All cities in the Top 10 had connection speeds of at least 6.6 Mbps.

New from Akamai for this quarter is a visualization tool, which lets users create custom charts plotting a specific metric for a specific geographic area over the past 12 quarters that the Akamai study has been published.




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