FCC Sees Continued Broadband Growth
DSL lines are now growing at a faster pace than cable modem connections in the U.S., according to the latest broadband data from the FCC. But, in terms of sheer numbers, cable operators continue to hold their own against DSL providers. In the latest roundup of data released last week, the FCC found that high-speed DSL lines jumped 20% from 9.5 million to 11.4 million in the first half of 2004. For the 12-month period ending June 30, the number of DSL lines surged by 3.7 million, or 49%. At the same time, cable modem lines rose 13% from 16.4 million to 18.6 million in the first half of 2004. For the 12-month period ending June 30, the number of cable modem lines surged by 4.9 million, or 36%. So DSL lines, starting from a lower base, are now growing by a greater percentage. But cable modem lines, while their margin is narrowing, are still growing by a larger number. Overall, the FCC reported 32.5 million high-speed lines in service for residential and small business subscribers as of June 30. That's up 15% from 28.2 million at the end of 2003 and up 38% from 23.5 million in the middle of 2003.