The U.S. Department of Commerce recently released a comprehensive report that analyzes broadband access and adoption in the U.S. Interestingly, the study ranks Utah #1 out of all states for “Average Home Broadband Internet Adoption,” with 73% of Utah Households using broadband at home, according to a census study conducted in 2009.
The “Exploring the Digital Nation” report finds that socioeconomic factors such as income and education levels, although strongly associated with broadband use, are not the sole determinants of use. Even after accounting for socioeconomic differences, significant gaps remain along racial, ethnic and geographic lines.
The Utah Broadband Project is currently working to identify these and other potential gaps in Utah and recommend a plan to mitigate potential causes of non-adoption. While this ranking represents tremendous work and investment our local broadband providers have put into our high-tech infrastructure, the Project will continue to focus on bringing broadband to all unserved and underserved Utahans and keep the state in the top seat of broadband adoption and Internet usage rankings.
Earlier this year, the U.S. Department of Commerce’s National Telecommunications and Information Administration released initial findings from the 2009 census survey of 54,000 households, which showed that while virtually all demographic groups have experienced rising broadband Internet adoption at home and 64 percent of households overall have broadband at home, historic disparities among demographic groups have persisted over time.
Interesting facts from the report:
- Utah’s home broadband adoption rate jumped from 12% in 2001 to 73% in 2009.
- Income and education are strongly associated with broadband Internet use at home but are not the sole determinants.
- Differences in socio-economic attributes do not explain the entire gap in broadband Internet adoption associated with race and ethnicity.
- Urban residents were more likely than their rural counterparts to adopt broadband Internet, even after accounting for socio-economic differences.
- Home broadband Internet use by people with disabilities lagged adoption by those with no disability.
- Dial-up users, on average, were older, had lower levels of family income and education, and were more likely to reside in rural areas.