The popularity of Apple’s streaming media players is rapidly approaching Microsoft’s. According to a recent survey of streaming media usage, the market share of Apple’s iTunes and QuickTime players grew from 32% in January 2008 to 36.4% in January 2009, while Microsoft’s Media Player was unchanged at 50.7%. Most of this gain was due to the increasing popularity of iTunes. Meanwhile broadband lines grew by 20% to 110.5 million lines in Europe over the past year. In the US, broadband growth slowed to its lowest level in seven years, while penetration crept up to 59% overall.
The percentage of users on broadband in the UK rose to 95.1 percent in December 2008, according the to Office for National Statistics. More than 19 of 20 connections to the Internet are via broadband in the UK, according to a survey of Internet Service Providers. Due to the high penetration rate, the quarterly report has been discontinued. Meanwhile in the US, broadband penetration grew to 93.38 percent among active Internet users in January 2009.
More than half of all Americans, some 56%, have accessed the Internet by wireless means. For laptop users, over 81% have connected to the Internet wirelessly, according to PEW Internet. By the end of 2010, Clearwire plans to extend WiMAX coverage to 120 million Americans across 80 markets, according to Akamai. Among active Internet users, nearly 93% connect to the Internet over a broadband connection. Note that our July 2009 broadband survey starts anew with a larger sample size from Nielsen.
Broadband subscribers in the UK experience an average download speed of 3.6Mbps, according to a recent survey by Ofcom (Office of Communications 2009). Among subscribers to “up to 8Mbps” broadband, UK subscribers experienced an average actual download speed of 3.6Mbps, or 45% of the headline speed. Google has just the answer to disgruntled broadband subscribers, launching a new M-Lab service to measure user connections. Meanwhile in the US, broadband penetration increased to 92.8% among active Internet users.
President-elect Obama is calling for a massive $850 billion or more economic stimulus package to jump start the US economy and rebuild neglected infrastructure. As part of this plan the Obama administration has pledged to deploy next-generation broadband to every community in America. What the new administration has not offered is more specifics on their plan to achieve broadband for all. The Free Press has put forth a $44 billion plan to achieve universal broadband availability for the United States.
Since the end of 2009, the US has improved its broadband speed rankings from 22nd to 16th worldwide. From Q4 2009 to Q2 2010, the average broadband speed in the US grew from 3.8Mbps to 4.6Mbps, according to an Akamai broadband survey. Delaware enjoys the fastest connections in the US, and California dominates the top US cities for fast broadband. If you want fast Internet connections, don’t go to Mayotte, Wallis and Futuna, or Cuba.
The UK will pass Canada in broadband penetration for the top spot among G7 countries in 2008. The UK’s higher growth rate will propel them past Canada in late 2008, according to projections by Website Optimization. While the US showed a higher growth rate in year over year broadband uptake, it remains in 15th place worldwide in broadband penetration. Japan and Korea now have more broadband subscribers on fiber than on DSL or cable. Among active Internet users, broadband penetration in the US grew to 91.8% in September 2008, up 0.26 percentage points over last month.
For the first time, US broadband penetration broke ninety percent among active Internet users in June 2008. Broadband jumped to 90.5% in June, up 0.53 percentage points over the previous month.
European Wi-Fi usage is growing more than twice as fast as the US. At current growth rates, Europe is poised to pass North America in wireless Internet usage (see Figure 1). Due to popular demand, the FCC has redefined the speed of broadband. Among active Internet users in the US, 88.4% now use broadband.
US broadband penetration growth dropped from 15th to 17th place worldwide, from June 2007 to December 2007. Overall, US broadband penetration remained at 15th place among all countries surveyed, according to the OECD. The slower growth of US broadband appears to be due to a lack of choice for consumers, an overreliance on cable, and low DSL and fiber penetration. Meanwhile, US broadband penetration rose 0.43 percentage points to 89.3% among active Internet users.