New government data find that the nation’s major broadband providers deliver Internet connections that are generally 80 percent to 90 percent of maximum advertised speeds.
The data were released Tuesday – “Measuring Broadband America” – by the Federal Communications Commission. They show that the three most popular wired broadband technologies in the U.S. — DSL, cable modems and fiber-optic connections — all do a good job of delivering speeds promised to consumers, even during peak usage periods.
The FCC also is making available three websites to help consumers find providers through a map, test speeds and provide basic information for buying decisions.
“To make informed choices about purchasing and using broadband, consumers need to have access to basic information about broadband performance,” the report’s authors said.
“Will a particular offering allow me to browse the web quickly and easily?
“Will it enable me to use new applications that help me maintain my health, search for a job, or take courses online?
“What should I look for in a provider if I want to watch high definition online video or play online video games?
“Does a given speed tier have sufficient upload capacity to enable video conferencing?
“Will a higher speed, higher priced service improve my Internet experience?
“Can I get by with a lower priced service?
“And does the speed a provider advertises match the actual speed I will receive at my home?
“To help answer these questions, this Report presents the results of the first rigorous, nationwide study of actual home broadband performance in the United States.”
The findings are based on an FCC study of residential Internet service offered by 13 of the largest broadband providers in the U.S., including AT&T Inc., Verizon Communications Inc., Comcast Corp. and Time Warner Cable Inc. The study measured Internet speeds delivered to thousands of subscribers in March.
The study didn’t look into speeds provided by wireless services.
Read here for specific findings from the report.
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