BroadBand Users Grow 49 Percent

BroadBand Users Grow 49 Percent

Women, Seniors, Students and Affluent Americans Comprise Some of the Fastest Growing Demographic Groups Adopting Broadband. Nielsen//NetRatings reports that there are 39 million, or 13 percent of Americans, connecting via broadband in the U.S., the highest number to date. Broadband users at-home grew 49 percent year-over-year, while narrowband users declined 12 percent during May 2003

Despite higher growth rates for broadband, there are nearly twice as many narrowband users as broadband users in the U.S. In comparison, last year there were three times as many narrowband users as broadband users. Narrowband users continue to outweigh broadband users with 69.6 million users.

"We're seeing the mainstreaming of broadband as more and more modem users migrate to high-speed, especially as broadband costs continue to drop, "said Marc Ryan, director of analysis, Nielsen//NetRatings. "Clearly people are discovering the perks of high-speed access, from streaming video and audio to rich media."

Internet Connection Speed Growth Rates (U.S., At-Home)

Speed May 02 (000) May 03 (000) % Change
Broadband Total 26,113 38,957 49.20%
Narrowband Total 79,444 69,647 -12.30%
Modem 14.4K 3,966 3,454 -12.90%
Modem 28.8/33.6K 12,014 10,118 -15.80%
Modem 56K 63,465 56,075 -11.60%
Source: Nielsen//NetRatings, May 2003

Demographic changes occurring during the past year in the at-home audience.

- Women outpace men in broadband adoption slightly at 51 percent versus 48 percent. There are still more men (20.1 million) who access the Internet via broadband than women (18.9 million), and there continues to be more females (37.8 million) who access the Internet via narrowband than males (31.8 million).

- Seniors ages 65 to 99 continue to be the fastest growing age group using broadband, rising 64 percent to 1.7 million users. They are, however, still increasing their narrowband usage by three percent year-over-year.

- Students are the largest set of broadband users in the occupation category with 7.8 million users, growing 51 percent year-over-year. More than 12.3 million students connect via narrowband.

- Those earning between $75-100k belong to the fastest growing income group adopting high-speed access, increasing 55 percent to 8.1 million users.