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April Bandwidth Report - Canadian Broadband Continues Record Growth

How fast are most connection speeds in the US and Canada? How far has broadband penetrated into these countries? The following charts, derived from Nielsen//NetRatings and Ipsos-Reid data, show trends in connection speeds to the Internet.

Home Connectivity in the US

As of March 2003, most users in the US connect to the Internet using dial-up modems of 56Kbps or less. 53.26% use 56Kbps modems, 9.79% use 28/33.3Kbps, and 3.17% use 14.4Kbps modems. All told 66.2% of home users in the US connect to the Internet at 56Kbps or less (see Figure 1).

Web Connection Speed Trends - Home Users (US)

Web Connection Speed Trends Mar. 2003 - U.S. home users

Figure 1: Web Connection Speed Trends - Home Users (US)
Source: Nielsen//NetRatings

Broadband Growth in the US

Broadband penetration in US homes slowed somewhat in March. As of March 2003 broadband penetration was at 33.8%, up from 33.5% in February. In contrast, broadband has increased by over 1.2% per month from October 2002 to February 2003. Extrapolating the data provided by Nielsen//NetRatings, broadband share in the US should exceed 50% by June of 2004 (see Figure 2).

Broadband Connection Speed Trend - Home Users (US)

Broadband Connection Speed Trend - Mar. 2003 - U.S. home users

Figure 2: Broadband Connection Speed Trend - Home Users (US)
Extrapolated from Nielsen//NetRatings data

Work Connectivity

Most workers in the US enjoy high-speed connections to the Internet. Most use a high-speed line such as a T1 connection, and share bandwidth between computers connected to a network. The speed of each connection decreases as more employees hook up to the LAN. As of March of 2003, of those connected to the Internet, 68.9% of US users at work enjoy a high-speed connection, up from 67.9% in February. 31.1% connect from work at 56Kbps or less (see Figure 3).

Web Connection Speed Trends - Work Users (US)

Web Connection Speed Trends - Mar. 2003 - U.S. work users

Figure 3: Web Connection Speed Trends - Work Users (US)
Source: Nielsen//NetRatings

Broadband Trends in the US and Canada

In contrast, most of our wired neighbors to the north have broadband connections. As of March of 2003, broadband use in Canadian wired households was 64%, over 30% higher than the US at 33.8%. Figure 4 compares the growth of broadband for US and Canadian home users.

Broadband Trends - Home Users (US vs. Canada)

Broadband Trends Home US vs. Canada - Mar. 2000-2003

Figure 4: Broadband Trends - Home (US vs. Canada)
Sources: Nielsen//NetRatings and Ipsos-Reid

Broadband Households as % of Internet Households

By Country 2000 2001 2002 2003
US 8.1% 14.5% 22.3% 33.8%
Canada 24% 32% 49% 64%

Further Reading

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