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FAQ - Broadband Facts

The broadband subscription rate for my county is higher than the broadband availability rate. This does not seem to make sense. Why are those different?

The data on broadband availability and subscription comes from two different data sources which use different definitions of broadband. They also differ in whether or not they include mobile (cellular) broadband and satellite as broadband.

Data on broadband availability is from the FCC's most recent release of Form 477 data (June 2018). Only internet service of at least 25 Mbps down and 3 Mbps up is considered broadband. Broadband availability figures do not include broadband availability via mobile (cellular) broadband or satellite.

Data on broadband subscription is from the U.S. Census Bureau 2017 American Community Survey 5-Year Data. These figures include those who subscribe to cable, fiber optic, or DSL, satellite, fixed wireless subscription, or mobile broadband plans. Internet faster than dial-up is considered broadband.

For more information, see the Data Sources and Discussion Guide at:

For more information, contact Sam Shaw.