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FCC Finds 68 percent of U.S. Broadband... Isn't

By - Source: DSLReports | B 84 comments
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More like low-speed internet.

New data from the FCC finds that the majority of broadband internet in the U.S. isn't really broadband at all – at least not according to the FCC's definition of what high-speed internet broadband access should be.

The new definition of broadband by the FCC is 4 Mbps downstream and 1 Mbps upstream. The FCC report (pdf) found that 68 percent of so-called U.S. broadband connections didn't live up to that standard.

58 percent of the connections measured couldn't get above 3 Mbps downstream, and 49 percent of connections had upstream speeds slower than 768 kbps.

Granted, internet service providers offer different tiers of speed at various price points, so it's possible that many subscribers opt for the slower than 4 Mbps/1 Mbps to save some cash on their monthly bills.

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  • 11 Hide
    irtehyar , December 15, 2010 1:59 PM
    I'm shocked! And here I thought they *all* provided enough bandwidth to fill up your monthly cap within 3 days!

    /snicker
Other Comments
  • 11 Hide
    irtehyar , December 15, 2010 1:59 PM
    I'm shocked! And here I thought they *all* provided enough bandwidth to fill up your monthly cap within 3 days!

    /snicker
  • 6 Hide
    mboyer87 , December 15, 2010 2:00 PM
    This isn't shocking at all.
  • 6 Hide
    officeguy , December 15, 2010 2:02 PM
    Isn't that false advertisement? Correct me if I am wrong, but there isn't a term for speed between dial up and broadband. I guess they cant say it is dial up so they round out the speed to broadband.
  • 4 Hide
    SlickyFats , December 15, 2010 2:06 PM
    Hmm. I didn't know there was a definition for Broadband. I do however now know that my 5Mbps Down and 500Kbps UP isn't broadband. Thanks
  • 4 Hide
    bustapr , December 15, 2010 2:06 PM
    Lol, in my area, the only ISP abuses. Theyre billing me $35/month for 1mb. And the max download speed is 54 kb/s. They call it broadband, is it enough to report them to FCC?
  • 3 Hide
    megamanx00 , December 15, 2010 2:08 PM
    Hell, I could have told them that.
  • 1 Hide
    g00fysmiley , December 15, 2010 2:10 PM
    yea... nto really surprising, in my old place my speeds were pathetic, 2-3 meg down and .5 meg up... payign the same service in a different part of town where i bough tmy hous ei get 25 down and 3 up
  • -1 Hide
    rubix_1011 , December 15, 2010 2:12 PM
    Is this data tested from an average selection of end-users' residencies, or from the broadband offices/hubs?

    The actual service the user receives depends solely on the carrier medium between hubs and the user's residence...this often is average to poor...and in the case of cable broadband, it is shared within the local area, so of course this could be saturated by a small group of users depending on the setup.

    Please provide more detailed information on 'how' the study was done to show/prove their findings.
  • 2 Hide
    Transmaniacon , December 15, 2010 2:13 PM
    The fastest internet in my area is RoadRunner, and the highest available upstream is 512kbps...
  • -2 Hide
    Socialdisorder , December 15, 2010 2:15 PM
    officeguyIsn't that false advertisement? Correct me if I am wrong, but there isn't a term for speed between dial up and broadband. I guess they cant say it is dial up so they round out the speed to broadband.


    Not really, false advertising or deceptive advertising is considered false or misleading. You know about the speeds when you sign up YOU personally are aware of the speeds. It should be categorized as low speed broadband. Now if they were selling 6mbps and charging an insanely low rate..and it ended up 768k...then yes that would be false advertising.
  • 3 Hide
    bgaimur , December 15, 2010 2:17 PM
    My connection can fill my 250GB cap if utilized fully for less than 12 hours straight. Does that make sense?
  • 0 Hide
    hellwig , December 15, 2010 2:20 PM
    I get 12mb down/1mb up here in Iowa, so I can't complain, but that's with cable. Couple years ago when I tried DSL, it was 256kb down, thats EDGE speeds over a physical line, pathetic.
  • -2 Hide
    squanto , December 15, 2010 2:31 PM
    Hey, I get 300/s down at work, and 50 at home. Im happy
  • 0 Hide
    ntrceptr , December 15, 2010 2:34 PM
    bgaimurMy connection can fill my 250GB cap if utilized fully for less than 12 hours straight. Does that make sense?


    Thats quick if your talking Bytes and not Bits
    250,000,000,000 / 12 / 60 / 60 = 5.7 meg per second
  • 0 Hide
    captainnemojr , December 15, 2010 2:38 PM
    It's not much cash savings. A lot of providers *cough* AT&T *cough* increase speed double or triple for only $5-$10 bucks more a month, but starting prices are $30+ for the slowest speed.
  • 1 Hide
    Hunter844 , December 15, 2010 2:42 PM
    I pay 40 bucks a month and usually after 6pm each night I can't play youtube clips because the system is over flooded...this is after they've done their major upgrade in the area. You can forget about streaming Netflix.

    Suddenlink...Cabot,AR
  • 2 Hide
    ntrceptr , December 15, 2010 2:42 PM
    This news is not surprising considering the cable companies are scamming the gove4rnment here in the USA. One of the things the broadband act was supposed to do was increase our national speed average. So they decided, lets fake it, by implementing Turbo Boost and crap like that so all the speed test averages go up. When infact they have done nothing else to improve our broadband network infrastructure. I hope the government finds a way to fine or penalize them for this. How about the lazy a$$ cable companies quit trying to profit so much and upgrade the actual infrastucture. I'd probably create Jobs which are needed everywhere. Plus the cable networks are gonna start losing all their customers to the phone networks like Verizon. I'd switch but Fios is not available in my area yet.
  • 0 Hide
    stoppard , December 15, 2010 2:42 PM
    @goofy

    If that is the case then they likely have load balancing issues. I had a similar problem where I live. It took literally a year of calls to tech support to get them to fix it. I documented trace routes and ping times. Download speeds at different times of day... the works. I was paying over $40.00 a month for 15 mb/s service and was getting 1 or so on a good day and there was no way that was going to stand. I realize that you have moved and your service is now better, but if this is happening to any of the rest of you then I suggest you call and complain. I did that once a month for a year, and demanded a refund for the service once a month for a year. (Which I got, after all they were not providing what I was paying for).
    It took forever and was very frustrating but in the end my speeds went from the 1 mb or so down that I was getting to the 15mb, (usually 18mb or more), that I pay for. So a little perseverance paid off, plus it benefited everyone in my little area of town whether they realized it or not.
  • 0 Hide
    Anonymous , December 15, 2010 2:49 PM
    I do pretty good where I live, 10 down/5 up for $26 a month. I could pay $50 and get 40/20. Not bad for living on the outskirts of a small town that's far away from a big city.

    I'm just luck enough to have a small ISP that runs fiber to your house. There are times that I get faster than my advertised speed which is awesome too.
  • 0 Hide
    mrmotion , December 15, 2010 2:51 PM
    paying charter for 16mb service getting about 6mb down 1mb up. Better than the 10mb and getting 4 but still a far cry...
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