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URLwire for Monday, March 29, 2004
March 2004 Bandwidth Report Now Online
US Broadband Penetration Jumps to 45.2% - US Internet Penetration Nearly 75% 
. .
The Bandwidth Report is a monthly roundup of connectivity trends in the US and elsewhere. Each month's bandwidth report offers the latest statistics in Internet connectivity and broadband trends
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Overall, broadband grew by 2.14% in February, with 45.15% of Internet-connected U.S. households enjoying a high-speed connection. 54.85% of US home users dial into the Internet with "narrowband" connections of 56Kbps or less.* Nearly 75% of U.S. households have Internet access at home, according to a Nielsen//NetRatings survey. The charts below, derived from Nielsen//NetRatings, show trends in connection speeds to the Internet for users in the United States.

Home Connectivity in the US:
As of February 2004, most users in the US connect to the Internet using dial-up modems of 56Kbps or less. 44.4% use 56Kbps modems, 7.6% use 28/33.3Kbps, and 2.9% use 14.4Kbps modems. In total, 55.85% of home users in the US connect to the Internet at 56Kbps or less (see Figure 1).

Broadband Growth in the US:
Broadband penetration in US homes increased by 2.14% in February. As of February 2004 broadband penetration was at 45.15%, up from 43.01% in January. This is higher than the average increase in broadband of .75% per month from October 1999 to December 2003. Extrapolating the data provided by Nielsen//NetRatings, we estimate that broadband share in the US should exceed 50% by June of 2004 (see Figure 2).

Work Connectivity:
Most workers in the US enjoy high-speed connections to the Internet. Most use a high-speed line such as a T1 connection, and share bandwidth between computers connected to an Ethernet network. The speed of each connection decreases as more employees hook up to the LAN. As of February of 2004, of those connected to the Internet, 77.2% of US users at work enjoy a high-speed connection, up 2.1% from 75.1% in January. 22.8% connect from work at 56Kbps or less (see Figure 3).

U.S. Internet Penetration Nearly 75%
Nearly three out of four U.S. households with a phone line have access to the Internet, according to a February 2004 Nielsen//NetRatings survey. In the U.S. 204.3 million people have access to the Internet, or 74.9 percent of the population. Internet access was 66% in February 2003, a nine percentage point rise in one year. Women were found to be slightly more likely to surf the Web than men.

"Women make the majority of purchases and household decisions, so it's no surprise that they are utilizing the Internet as a tool for daily living," said Kenneth Cassar, director of strategic analysis, Nielsen//NetRatings.

Internet access for women between the age of 35 and 54 was 81.7% while 80.2% of men had access in the same age group. For 25 to 34 year olds 77% of women had Internet access while 75.6% of men had access to the Internet.

About The Bandwidth Report:
The Bandwidth Report is a monthly roundup of connectivity trends in the US and elsewhere. Each month's bandwidth report offers the latest statistics in Internet connectivity and broadband trends, including: 

  • Home Connectivity in the US 
  • Broadband Growth in the US 
  • Work Connectivity 
  • Broadband Trends in the US, Canada, and other countries 
The March 2004 Bandwidth Report is available at:


Don't Make Me Wait! The new book titled "Speed Up Your Site - Web Site Optimization" by Andy King, and the companion web site are about designing "speedy" web sites with techniques that... 

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For a review copy of "Speed Up Your Site - Web Site Optimization" (New Riders, ISBN 0-7357-1324-3) or an interview with the author, contact: Matt Hockin, 503.246.1375, matt(at) -  

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