The number of digital subscriber line (DSL) high-speed Internet customers grew worldwide by 15 percent in the first quarter of this year, according to the DSL Forum.

Based on data from Point Topic, an analysis firm in London, the DSL Forum said 41.4 million people now utilize DSL. That’s an increase of 5.4 million since the last quarter of 2002 and is an increase of 90 percent over the past year.

Of those, 8.7 million are in North America, an increase of 6.7 percent.

Although cable users outnumber DSL users in the United States, the DSL Forum says DSL now controls 56.5 percent of the global broadband mass market. Cable controls 38 percent and gigabit Ethernet 4.7 percent.

DSL Forum announced the figures at SuperComm.

DSL Forum: www.dslforum.org