Broadband

This from a Jan. 2009 position paper by the IEEE:

Studies establish that current policies have let U.S. network penetration,speeds, and prices lag other developed countries by a significant degree. For example,using OECD data, Atkinson, et.al. (2008, p.6) report household penetration (fraction of households that subscribe) in South Korea, France, and the United States as 0.93, 0.54,and 0.57 respectively. They report average download speed (Mb/s) in those countries as 50, 18, and 5 respectively. They further report lowest monthly price per megabit per second (U.S. dollars) as 0.37, 0.33, and 2.83 respectively. (Note that these figures come from European studies. The United States doesn’t even have its own method for measuring broadband usage.)

My comment: Note that a US broadband subscriber has a 10th of the download speed as a S. Korean subscriber, but pays almost 8 times as much as the S. Korean subscriber. The IEEE goes on to note “The market is advancing U.S. broadband deployment, but at a pace limited by each individual provider’s perceived return on investment.”

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