While bar charts, line graphs and simple numbers are hardly capable of providing the defining answer to many economic, social and political questions, they are certainly a good way of obtaining a general overview of any particular subject.
Each month the Business Supplement will look into a brace of statistical information and provide readers with what we consider to be the central elements of these figures.
Speeding through the internet
For those who have been a connected part of the internet since its humble beginnings more than two decades ago, today’s download speeds are a thing of wonder, especially when performed on a mobile device. It’s almost impossible to recall the days when it could literally take minutes for a webpage to load; now, if it takes more than a few seconds, users get annoyed and start thinking about changing providers.
According to statistics presented by a company called Speedtest.net, the fastest mobile download speed in the world belongs to Norway, at 62.70 Megabits per second (Mbps). In second and third places are Qatar and Iceland respectively.
Notably, when it comes to the fastest fixed-line broadband download speed, that title is held by none other than Singapore, at an amazing 170.99 Mbps. The world average is just 45.48 Mbps.
As far as download speeds on mobiles are concerned, the world average is 23.57 Mbps. Thailand, sadly, lags well behind the average, running at 13.93 Mbps, ranking it at 98th out of 125 countries surveyed by Speedtest.net.
Among its Asean contemporaries, Thailand ranks ninth, with only Indonesia (10.44 Mbps) worse. No surprise that Singapore stands at the top of the Asean pile at 54.96 Mbps, which is also the fourth-fastest in the world and then there is a huge gap to the Asean second place, held, perhaps amazingly, by Myanmar at 23.73 Mbps.
Vietnam (20.32) ranks third, Malaysia (18.25) fourth, Cambodia (15.51) fifth, Brunei (15.20) sixth, while Laos and the Philippines (14.05) share equal seventh position.
By way of further comparison, the United States only ranks 47th in the world at 27.76 Mbps, eight places behind its great trade rival China (30.45).
Tiny yes, but a super killer
There are around 3,000 species of mosquito scattered across the globe and, according to a brace of sources from the World Health Organisation (WHO) to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, these tiny creatures are responsible for up to 830,000 deaths a year.
Only we humans comes close, killing around 580,000 of our fellow homo sapiens over the course of each 12 months.
There are also approximately 3,000 species of snakes, and these are responsible for the demise of 60,000 people a year while dogs, which number some nine million animals, cause around 17,400 deaths per annum, most via rabies infection.
Scorpions kill some 3,500 people each year, crocodiles about 1,000, elephants just 100 and bees a mere 60.