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29 November 2004

How Michael Powell analyses US Broadband adoption

In a previous post, I reviewed research on Broadband adoption in the US to arrive at an overall understanding of the Internet adoption situation as of end 2004.

Some explanations of this situation are offered in Michael Powell: Broadband suffers from Innovator's dilemma, an interview of FCC Chairman with Larry Lessig.

Three factors are invoked to explain comparatively weak US Broadband adoption (in 2000, N°1/2 in broadband penetration; in 2004, n° 13):

  1. legacy, prior success in dial-up Internet access has made the switch to broadband more difficult
  2. geography, the way the Amercan territory is configured and inhabited makes wiring everybody extremely hard
  3. multi-provider, the US are experimenting with a multiplicity of Broadband delivery technologies: DSL, cable, wireless, WiMax, Satellite; and operators

Is Broadband adoption rate the main issue though? Both the Pew Internet Project and the Online Nation Report show that the number of households with no form of Internet connection is still pretty high and, among dial-up households, many are those that say they are just not interested in upgrading.  Availability of Broadband acces may serve those who are already part of the Information Society. But may not be the key to engage more people into the Information Society.

Posted at 03:36 PM in Usage at Home | Permalink


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