FCC’s Yearly Reports Analyze Speed and Number of Connections

Pete CodellaBroadband

fcc-logo-light-blueThe 2016 Measuring Broadband America Report from the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) indicates continued network improvements across the United States and reliable reporting from Internet Service Providers (ISPs).  In addition, the number of connections has increased 11% between 2014 and 2015, according to the Internet Access Services report

The annual report looks at information collected from fixed ISPs to analyze consumer broadband in the U.S.  The data is collected as a part of the Measuring Broadband American program.  Since the FCC started collecting data for the report in 2011, the maximum advertised speeds in the most popular service tiers have increased from 12-30 Mbps in 2011 to 100-300 Mbps in 2015.

The median speed for consumers in the U.S. this year was 39 Mbps, which is a 22% increase from 32 Mbps median speed in the previous year.  Since 2011, the FCC has found over the course of their research that annual median download speeds have increased 47% for cable, 14% for fiber, and remained mostly the same for DSL.

The 2016 report also revealed the actual speeds most consumers see in their residences meet or exceed the advertised speeds offered by ISPs.  This information should put a consumer’s mind at ease; in most cases, you get what you pay for.  This finding is also consistent with the Broadband Outreach Center’s mobile drive test research.  For both consumers and planners, it is critical to have accurate coverage information.

The FCC also recently released it’s Internet Access Services Report, which provides a year to year look at Internet access for Americans.  As of December 2015, there were 355 million Internet connections, with 253 million of these connections attributable to mobile connections and 102 million accounting for fixed connections.

According to the FCC, about one-half of Americans are using fixed Internet connections that do not meet the federal definition for broadband (25 Mbps download/3 Mbps upload).  About one-quarter of Americans have fixed connections with speeds less than 10 Mbps.

Utah’s fixed connections by speed are comparable to the rest of the country.  Approximately 53% of fixed connections meet the 25 Mbps speed threshold, and 76% of connections meet the 10 Mbps threshold.  Utah does, however, outpace the rest of the country for connections at or above 100 Mbps.  While approximately 15% of fixed connections in the US meet that thresholds, over 20% of Utah’s connections are at or above 100 Mbps.

To read the full FCC Measuring Broadband America Report click here:


To read the full FCC Internet Access Services report click here: