Study: 6M Homes Go Mobile-Only for Broadband

Six million homes now using wireless as only broadband service

December 15, 2011

1 Min Read

BOSTON -- By the end of 2011, 6.05 million US households will depend on a wireless or mobile platform (including 3G or 4G) as their only means of accessing the internet, according to research just published by the Strategy Analytics Service Provider Strategies program. This represents 6.9% of total US broadband connections—and a 430,000 net increase over 2010 levels. These “Mobile-Only” customers typically connect to broadband using 3G or 4G-enabled smartphones or PC dongles, and are unable or unwilling to use a wired broadband service such as cable, DSL or fiber.

Over 50 percent of US household broadband connections today are via Cable Modem, and this share is expected to increase slightly over the next five years, according to Strategy Analytics. However, the decline of Telco-provided Digital Subscriber Line (DSL) subscriptions is gradually giving way to Fiber and Mobile-Only connections. While mobile network capacity and traffic are poised to explode in the near future, Strategy Analytics does not anticipate 4G taking over as a primary access medium in the home.

“We see two parallel markets for 'Mobile Only' in the US: users in remote or underserved areas where dependable fixed broadband is unavailable, and cost-conscious casual users, who are unlikely to exceed imposed data caps, and for whom mobile data rates are ‘good enough,’” said Ben Piper, Director of the Service Provider Strategies program at Strategy Analytics.

Strategy Analytics Inc.

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