Wednesday, February 16, 2011

National Broadband Map Shows 68% Penetration

The National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) published its online National Broadband Map -- providing a searchable database on broadband Internet availability and adoption across the country.



The database includes more than 25 million searchable records showing where broadband Internet service is available, the technology used to provide the service, the maximum advertised speeds of the service, and the names of the service providers. Users can search by address to find the broadband providers and services available in the corresponding census block or road segment, view the data on a map, or use other interactive tools to compare broadband across various geographies, such as states, counties or congressional districts.


A key finding in the data is that a digital divide persists between urban and rural areas.


"The National Broadband Map shows there are still too many people and community institutions lacking the level of broadband service needed to fully participate in the Internet economy. We are pleased to see the increase in broadband adoption last year, particularly in light of the difficult economic environment, but a digital divide remains," said Assistant Secretary for Communications and Information and NTIA Administrator Lawrence E. Strickling. "Through NTIA's Broadband Technology Opportunities Program, digital literacy activities, and other initiatives, including the tools we are releasing today, the Obama Administration is working to address these challenges."


Additional findings include:


  • Approximately 36 percent of Americans have access to wireless (fixed, mobile, licensed, and unlicensed) Internet service at maximum advertised download speeds of 6 Mbps or greater, which some consider the minimum speed associated with "4G" wireless broadband service. Ninety-five percent of Americans have access to wireless Internet service speeds of at least 768 kbps, which corresponds roughly to "3G" wireless service.


  • 68 percent of U.S. households have broadband access, as compared to 63.5 percent last year.


  • Overall, the two most commonly cited main reasons for not having broadband Internet access at home are that it is perceived as not needed (46 percent) or too expensive (25 percent). In rural America, however, lack of broadband availability is a larger reason for non-adoption than in urban areas (9.4 percent vs. 1 percent). Americans also cite the lack of a computer as a factor.
http://broadbandmap.gov/technology

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