Monday, June 20, 2011

Broadband Forum: Reinvigorated Growth for Fixed Broadband Lines

Over 15.2 million fixed broadband subscribers were added worldwide in the first three months of this year, according to the Broadband Forum, marking the biggest quarterly increase in the last two years and representing an annual growth rate of 11.93%. According to figures from Point Topic, Asia remains the fastest growing region for broadband with 16.21% annual growth rate - almost double that of the Americas. Asia's fixed broadband subscribers now make up 42% of the global total, up from 40% last year, with Europe and the Americas behind with 30% and 25% respectively. We are also seeing emerging markets make strides, with the Middle East and Latin America advancing quickly.

"Broadband is showing healthy double digit growth and has in fact increased its growth rate this year. This indicates how vital it has become to businesses, residential consumers and countries," noted Robin Mersh, Chief Executive Officer for the Broadband Forum.

The strong Asian growth is due in large part to the continuing success in broadband in China with 42% of the net additions to the total global broadband subscriber numbers coming from China and its territories (the Special Administrative Regions of Hong Kong and Macau) in the first three months of 2011.

Some other observations:

  • IPTV has continued to grow well, with 34% in the 12 months to 31st March 2011, a 6.4% increase in the quarter.
  • Total IPTV subscriber numbers have now reached 48.2 million at the end of the first quarter 2011.
  • Europe continues to be the largest region with over 21 million IPTV subscribers, but Asia is catching up fast with 18 million and both China and Taiwan showing growth of over 50%. Of the 2.9M new subscribers added this year (Q1 2011), 1.4M came from Asia.
  • In terms of access technologies, fiber, including various hybrid DSL/fiber rollouts, is by far the fastest growing with over 20% increase in its subscriber base in the last 12 months.

The Broadband Forum also noted its ongoing work towards the adoption of new technologies and standards by creating the specifications and toolkits needed to help service providers and vendors expedite their programs.

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