New Study Offers A Refreshing Twist On Broadband Stats

from the penetration-benchmarks dept

How the US fares in terms of broadband adoption compared to other countries has been the subject of considerable debate. A recent report put out by the OECD warns that the US is falling behind other countries, although the report didn't take into account other factors, like population density. A new study from a Washington think tank looks at broadband adoption in different countries, but frames the issue a little differently (via Jeff Nolan). Instead of just looking at raw numbers, the study takes into account the economic, political and geographical factors that might affect adoption in one way or another. So, for example, it argues that Turkey and Portugal are actually doing very well, particularly when you factor in economic conditions. Conversely, Korea and Japan aren't the broadband miracles that they're made out to be. As for the US, the study claims that it's underperforming relative to its potential. There are certainly going to be quibbles with the study's methodology, particularly as it seems difficult to ascertain where a country's broadband penetration should be as opposed to where it is. But it makes a lot more sense to look at the factors that make each country's situation unique, rather than just comparing them all as if conditions were uniform, which ultimately results in scaremongering and political posturing.

Filed Under: broadband


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  1. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 20 Jul 2007 @ 5:28am


    i love a good study but have to laugh that it costs 3 million to find out this useless info.
    ...
    Now if the government actually did something and took control of the broadband infrastructure maybe our tax dollars would finally be used for something useful...a nice high speed connection to everyone.


    Isn't the usefulness of studies like this that they demonstrate whether government should get involved? If your broadband is pretty much in line with your needs, as an economy, why should the government take control of it? The only justification for state involvement would be that a lack of internet access is in some way holding the economy back, and the market, for some bizarre reason, can't fix this. This seems to show that isn't the case.

    I can't help but think that many of the earlier studies that complain about low broadband penetration in countries like the US and UK are likely influenced in some way by ISPs: it supports whatver arguments they want to make for government support and spending. This seems to demonstrate that there's no need for that.

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