Some 78 percent of U.S. households buy a fixed network broadband access service at home, and broadband now accounts for 94 percent of all Internet access services sold to consumers at home, according to Leichtman Research Group.
In 2004, about 33 percent of U.S. households buying Internet access service were buying broadband rather than dial-up service. That figure grew to 75 percent in 2008 and 92 percent in 2012.
In total, 83 percent of U.S. households buy a fixed network Internet service for use at home, while 55 percent of adults also buy access to the Internet on a smart phone.
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The number of U.S. adults using their smart phones to get access to the Internet has grown 44 percent from 2012 levels.
If about 15 percent of U.S. adults choose not to use the Internet, it is likely that most households using the Internet already are buying service, whether fixed, mobile or both, since 83 percent are buying a fixed access service.
As we creep closer to a time when many consumers might be able to buy their entertainment video service “over the top,” rather than as a managed service, the percentage of households buying broadband but not cable, satellite or telco TV service will be watched as an indicator of potential market demand.
The LRG study suggests nine percent of U.S. homes buy fixed network broadband, but do not buy a traditional video service. In 2011 and 2012, the percentage of non-buyers was 8 percent.
Complicating the broadband adoption picture is growing use of mobile Internet access. Some
64 percent of fixed network broadband subscribers also access the Internet on a smartphone, up from 52 percent last year.
In fact, LRG estimates that 19 percent of homes that do not buy at-home fixed network broadband access use smart phones for Internet access, up from 12 percent in 2012.
The study also suggests that “broadband access cord cutting” is nearly non-existent. Only about 1 percent of households that paid to subscribe to Internet service at home in the past year do not currently subscribe, and do not plan to subscribe again in the next six months, LRG says.
Nor is availability of fixed network Internet access much of a problem. Less than 1 percent of all online households say that broadband is not available in their area. In 2008 that percentage was 6 percent.
In other words, if people do not buy Internet access at home these days, it mostly is because they do not use the Internet and therefore have no need for an access service.
Edited by Alisen Downey