The Office of National Statistics (ONS) has issued its latest quarterly Internet access report to the end of September 2008. Broadband now accounts for 94.1% of all Internet connections, up from 92.8% in June. Unfortunately the overall number of connections has continued to decline in Q3 by -0.4%, which compares with a revised figure of -0.6% for Q2.
That's a far cry from the +1.1% recorded at the same time last year and is mostly due to an aggressive 18.6% decrease in dial-up Internet connections during the last quarter. The current recession and natural market saturation are mostly to blame.
The report also keeps track of average "ADVERTISED" broadband speeds, which will not reflect the true performance received by customers:
The proportion of higher speed connections continues to increase. In September 2008, 57.7% of broadband connections had a speed greater than 2Mbps, which is an increase from 55.8% in June 2008. Over the same period, the percentage of connections with a speed of less than or equal to 2Mbps decreased to 42.3% in September 2008, down from 44.2% in June 2008.
It's worth pointing out that the ONS typically seems to concentrate on land-line based Internet connections, which would not be able to factor in the full and growing influence of newer Mobile Broadband and wireless services. We suspect that this would mitigate such falls if it were to be correctly recorded.
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