Market research firm Strategy Analytics has said the number of worldwide broadband users has now surpassed one billion.
The research, which projected 415 million broadband households by the end of 2008, said this significant threshold was reached in mid-November.
The term “Broadband User” means multiple individuals sharing a single household broadband subscription, and is an important indicator for Internet companies who often get updated on broadband’s global reach.
Much of the future growth in broadband will come from developing countries, such as India and China, where millions of people are yet to own a computer to browse the Internet.
“With the North American and Western European broadband markets gradually maturing, the real broadband growth engines are the emerging countries,” said Ben Piper, Analyst and Director of the Strategy Analytics (News - Alert) Multiplay Market Dynamics service. “Central and Eastern Europe, Latin America, and Asia Pacific are all expected to see double-digit growth in the next five years.”
An earlier report from the company said that broadband service providers in the United States had successfully weathered the economic storm. In America, big brands - such as Verizon (News - Alert), AT&T, Comcast and Time Warner Cable – have gained more customers in the third quarter.
According to that report release earlier this month, there was a 3 percent growth in subscription in the first fiscal quarter.
The second quarter however, according to the research, was bad for most of the service providers as each of the top four U.S. service providers saw the number of net new subscriptions fall.
Narayan Bhat is a contributing editor for TMCnet. To read more of Narayan's articles, please visit his columnist page.
Edited by Stefania Viscusi