January 22, 2009

Increasing Broadband Users Through Economic Stimulus

According to the latest report by the Pew Internet and American Life Project, investment in broadband Internet access has become part of the broader discussion about President Obama's economic stimulus package.

How easy will it be to increase the pool of broadband subscribers or to encourage existing ones to upgrade their connection speeds?

Pew’s answer?
So, if more and faster broadband is provided, will people come? The analysis here suggests that the answer is “yes,” but that it may take longer than some advocates anticipate. To be sure, targeted efforts to address infrastructure gaps and cost barriers could, within a few years, boost broadband adoption by as much as 10 percentage points. And one-third of existing broadband subscribers are low hanging fruit to adopt faster broadband soon after it is available. However, one-in-five Americans currently don’t have broadband for reasons that won’t be addressed by price cuts or a fiber node in the neighborhood. It will take time to get them up and running on broadband -- probably longer than the impacts of the stimulus package are intended to last.”

Read the full report.

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