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Is Your Internet Running At Industry Standard?

The Federal Communications Commission works toward six goals in broadband Internet: competition, spectrum, media, public safety, homeland security, and modernizing the FCC.

A usage survey by the FCC has shown that 60 percent of high speed internet connections in the U.S. are slower than 3Mbps– less than the industry standard of “minimum bandwidth” needed to accommodate today’s “high-quality voice, data, graphics, and video.” The survey also shows growth in wired broadband connections by 1 million subscriptions. While this is considered to be relatively slow growth, wireless connections grew by 15 million or 27%.

Out of 153 million connections, 31 percent were found to be greater than 6Mbps, nine percent were in between 3Mbps and 6Mbps and 60% of Internet users had connections slower than 3Mbps.
The minimum bandwidth deemed necessary to handle today’s applications and computer uses is 4Mbps. There is much controversy on whether 4Mbps is too high of a benchmark or too low. While it is true that today many only use their computer for work purposes or as a means of keeping in touch, there are still others who use their Internet connection for online multiplayer games (an activity that requires a zippy 6Mbps connection at the least.)

The FCC is conducting a further survey that compares actual versus advertised ISP (Internet Service Provider) speeds.

Photo Courtesy of Greg Elin
Photo Courtesy of Jepoirrier