Need for Speed
Irvine scored yet another “first in the nation” to add to the city’s growing list. Irvine has the best Internet broadband speed in the country. According to analysis from speed test company Ookla, as reported at 9to5mac.com, Irvine has an average download speed of 124Mbps and an upload speed of 52Mbps. The worst was Buffalo, New York, which limps along at 65Mbps downloads and 17Mbps uploads. This top ranking might surprise some who gripe about the lack of choice when it comes to Internet providers in the city. A closer look confirms that the top ranking was based on those who have Google Fiber. In fact, the top 10 cities all have Google Fiber. Still, when Internet service providers were ranked using a different standard based on the percentage of the time a tested speed was acceptable for streaming 4K video – a download speed of 25Mbps or better, Cox scored 81.7 percent, ranking third among ISPs listed. According to the report, fixed broadband speeds in the United States are rapidly increasing. Speedtest data reveals a 35.8 percent increase in mean download speed during the last year and a 22 percent increase in upload speed. As a result, the U.S. ranks 7th in the world for download speed, between Hungary and Switzerland, but only 27th for upload, between Bulgaria and Canada. Fixed speeds are increasing at a faster rate than mobile ones, according to the report, but that is likely to change in 2020 when 5G speeds become more common.
Hit the Switch
UCI is adding to its reputation as one of the world’s greenest centers of higher education with its new Million LED Challenge. The idea is to replace less efficient lighting with LEDs as a way to reduce carbon footprints, reduce energy use and save money. The Million LED Challenge offers reduced prices on high-quality, high-efficiency light bulbs available at some 46 percent less than the same bulbs from online competitors. The program is collaboration between the University of California, California State University, California Community Colleges, and Department of General Services. The only caveat is that the program is intended for students, staff, faculty, alumni, and retirees and those “affiliated” with the participating schools. That word affiliated isn’t really defined—we all live near and support UCI, so perhaps that counts. The website where one purchases the discounted LEDs doesn’t appear particularly restrictive, so less affiliated may let their consciences be their buying guide.
PHOTOS: COURTESY IRVINE PD