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High-Speed Hits 28.6M Subscribers

  |  August 18, 2004   |  Comments

U.S. broadband growth continued through the second quarter of 2004, adding 1.72 million new subscriptions.

DSL subscriptions outpaced cable modem in the second quarter of 2004, but U.S. broadband growth is slowing down from a record-breaking year, according to figures from Leichtman Research Group, Inc.

DSL operators added nearly 900,000 new subscribers to the rolls in Q2 2004, compared to cable modem's 830,000. Cable modem maintains a 6.4 million subscriber lead in the U.S, with 61 percent of the market share.

The higher number of quarterly DSL subscriptions is indicative of the broadband connections' global status. DSL achieved three consecutive quarters of record-breaking growth worldwide, bringing the total to roughly 74 million. The U.S. accounts for approximately 11.129 million of the global DSL subscriptions, according to LRG.

The quarterly dip in the new broadband subscriptions might be the result of penetration increases, but Bruce Leichtman, president and principal analyst for LRG, expects a slight rebound.

"I agree that the market can not keep going at 2 million net adds per quarter. I think that we will see a higher number next quarter than this one, but while the quarterly numbers may jump up and down a little, they will probably be more in the 1.75 million range for the next year," said Leichtman.

New Broadband Subscriptions
Q2 2004 1,726,127
Q1 2004 2,343,294
Q4 2003 1,944,000
Q3 2003 2,035,315
Source: Leichtman Research Group, Inc.

By Nielsen//NetRatings' July 2004 measurements, U.S. broadband at-home penetration just passed the halfway mark. According to Pew Internet & American Life Project, just 39 percent of adult surfers had a broadband connection at home in March 2004.

Broadband vs. Narrowband Connections
(U.S., At-Home)
Connection Speed July 2003 July 2004
Broadband 38% 51%
Narrowband 62% 49%
Note: Broadband connections include ISDN, cable modems and DSL;
narrowband connections include modem speeds from 14.4K through 56K.
Source:Nielsen//NetRatings

The 18 to 20-year old age group led the broadband brigade, with 59 percent connecting via high-speed, followed by kids (58 percent), 25 to 34 (55 percent), teens (53 percent), and 21 to 24-year olds (53 percent).

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