The UK's mobile broadband speeds are stuck in the "dark ages" as the UK prepares for the Olympics, says Broadband Genie.

Research by the broadband site revealed the average mobile broadband speed across the country is just 1 to 2Mbps, which is "a very small increase from last year's figures" according to Broadband Genie editor Chris Marling.

3 and O2 were named the mobile providers that improved the speeds most since last year, although the site did not reveal exactly what headway had been made.

"A 1 to 2Mbps average is too slow to be able to stream video or use video chat reliably; downloading anything but small files, or do most kinds of online gaming – even if the service was consistent, which it rarely is.," said Broadband Genie editor Chris Marling.

"It's pathetic really. While the mobile broadband big boys play boardroom games with Ofcom, the UK's businesses and consumers continue to get a sub-par mobile broadband experience.

Marling also said UK mobile broadband companies have failed to realise the full potential of their 3G networks because much improved 4G technology is becoming available. However, because 4G networks need a new spectrum and Ofcom and has delayed the auction for this spectrum due to legal wranglings with networks, the website believes any chance of 4G mobile broadband being in place for the Olympics has now gone, with late 2013 being a more realistic target.

"While everyone from America to Australia, including most of Europe, are getting on with auctions or even deploying the technology now, we're still playing politics," he said.

Marling said just as Brazil is using the 2014 World Cup to get its services up and running, the Olympics could have been the perfect target for the UK.

"Instead anyone coming here next year will find a fourth rate network, instead of a 4G one. And that's before you even get onto the issue of capacity, which 3 has just announced is going to be an issue for it," added Marling.