US Broadband Penetration

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Broadband internet connections increased by 10.4 million lines in 2005 and voip use is expected to more than triple, as a result.

voip.com - The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) reports a 32% increase in the number of US broadband subscribers during 2005, giving the US the highest total number of broadband connections in the world.

As of June 30, 2005, the FCC has redefined broadband or high-speed lines as services that deliver connection speeds in excess of 200 kilobits per second (kbps) in at least one direction. They further expand that definition to include advanced service lines where connection speeds exceed 200 kbps in both directions. This clarification allows for more detailed data collection regarding broadband penetration and trends.

All facilities-based broadband providers are now required to report basic information to the FCC, such as services offered and types of customers served. Before the June 30, 2005 change, those service providers with fewer than 250 high-speed connections were not obligated to report data.

Nearly 90% of the 42.9 million reported high-speed lines were residential, with cable modems servicing 61% of that market and ADSL accounting for 37.2%. The remainder consists of SDSL at 0.4%, fiber connections to the end user's location at 0.2%, and 1.1% for other methods of connection like satellite, electric power line, and terrestrial fixed or mobile wireless.

Advanced services lines showed a 60% increase in subscribers, bringing the total number of broadband lines with both upstream and downstream speeds in excess of 200 kbps to 37.7 million primarily residential lines. Of these, 61.8% had speeds of at least 2.5 mbps in the fastest direction, generally downstream. As with high-speed lines, the majority of subscribers are being serviced by cable modems (64.9%), while only 33.9% reported using ASDL lines, and 0.5% were symmetric DSL (SDSL) or traditional wireline connections. Fiber connections accounted for 0.2% of the whole, while other types of connections came in at 0.5%. This includes satellite, electric power line, and terrestrial fixed or mobile wireless.

Due to this trend of increasing broadband penetration, US voice over IP (voip) users are expected to more than triple in the next 4 years, jumping from 10.3 million to 44 million in 2010. Voip requires a minimum of 90 kbps in both directions to work. Broadband speed can be checked using voip.com's bandwidth tester at [http://www.voip.com/speedtest.aspx http://www.voip.com/speedtest.aspx.

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Camie Gontier
VOIP.COM
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