Healthcare // Analytics
News
8/20/2009
09:11 AM
Connect Directly
RSS
E-Mail
50%
50%

Rural Broadband Deployment Booming

Funds from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act have been earmarked for the expansion of broadband penetration.

Long shortchanged in broadband access, rural areas of the U.S. are now at the vanguard in the installation of high speed Internet access, according to a comScore Inc. study released Wednesday. The market research firm said broadband growth in rural areas is now outpacing growth in urban and suburban areas.

The deployment of broadband technology and expanding broadband penetration in rural areas has been a major goal of the Federal Communications Commission in recent months. The cost of providing broadband in rural areas is generally higher than in urban and suburban areas, because of the high costs of providing equipment in sparsely populated regions.

ComScore said broadband penetration rates in rural areas have been growing at a 16% rate over the past two years versus an 11% rate in metropolitan areas. For purposes of the study, a rural market has a population of less than 10,000 while a metropolitan area has a population of 50,000-plus, according to comScore. In between are micropolitan areas with populations between 10,000 and 50,000, which grew 14 percentage points in the last two years.

"Across the country we have witnessed growth in broadband adoption driven by greater price competition and increased consumer demand, as bandwidth-intense activities like video streaming and peer-to-peer sharing continue to grow," said Brian Jurutka, comScore vice president of telecommunications, in a statement "With low-speed DSL priced at about the same level as dial-up in many areas, there is little incentive for households to remain on dial-up."

However, even with the new broadband adoption growth, broadband penetration in rural areas has remained below the national average of 89%. The rate in rural areas is 75%, said comScore.

The federal government has focused special efforts on accelerating broadband deployment throughout the U.S. and the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) has earmarked $7.2 billion for the Commerce Department's National Telecommunications and Information Administration and the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Rural Utilities Service.


There's a big buzz surrounding Government 2.0 -- the revolution that's bringing the principles and value of the Web as a platform to the business of governing. Attend Gov 2.0 Expo Showcase and hear innovators show how this is really happening. At the Washington Convention Center, Sept. 8. Find out more and register.

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Big Love for Big Data? The Remedy for Healthcare Quality Improvements
Big Love for Big Data? The Remedy for Healthcare Quality Improvements
Healthcare data is nothing new, but yet, why do healthcare improvements from quantifiable data seem almost rare today? Healthcare administrators have a wealth of data accessible to them but aren't sure how much of that data is usable or even correct.
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
White Papers
Current Issue
InformationWeek Tech Digest - July 22, 2014
Sophisticated attacks demand real-time risk management and continuous monitoring. Here's how federal agencies are meeting that challenge.
Flash Poll
Video
Slideshows
Twitter Feed
InformationWeek Radio
Archived InformationWeek Radio
A UBM Tech Radio episode on the changing economics of Flash storage used in data tiering -- sponsored by Dell.
Live Streaming Video
Everything You've Been Told About Mobility Is Wrong
Attend this video symposium with Sean Wisdom, Global Director of Mobility Solutions, and learn about how you can harness powerful new products to mobilize your business potential.