US telecom regulator the FCC has published an 87-page “Internet Access Services” December status report which claims that 68 per cent of Internet connections in North America cannot be considered broadband since they fall below the FCC’s minimum definition of broadband.
Connections need to equal or better 4Mbps downstream and 1Mbps upstream which is twice the 2Mbps downstream rate the British government plans to achieve for the entire UK by 2015. However the FCC data shows that the UK isn’t the only developed country struggling to roll out high speed Internet with the FCC report saying that 58 per cent of US connections failed to match 3Mbps.
To put it into perspective, the British office of national statistics estimated that the UK has 30 million citizens that use the Internet almost every day. The FCC data shows that 66 million US citizens make do on connections less than 768kbps.
The FCC report also showed that wireless services were driving the expansion in the US with wireless technologies making up a greater share of Internet connections above 200kbps on 39 per cent, than either cable on 32 per cent and ADSL on 23 per cent. Cable did, however, dominate connections with higher than 3Mbps.