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U.S. Winning the Broadband Race Over Europe

June 16, 2014

Coalition for the New Economy blog readers know we’ve repeatedly tried to debunk the myth that the U.S. is falling behind the rest of the world, particularly Europe, when it comes to access to high-speed broadband.

Here’s another story to add to our list of proof: according to a recent Financial Times news story, “The light touch of US regulators has helped increase investment in broadband and expanded access to high-speed internet in the US compared to Europe …” The newspaper cited a study by the University of Pennsylvania Law School, which it says its report also “showed that Europe’s treatment of broadband as a public utility … has hindered internet access growth there.” (Emphasis added.)

According to the study, written by professor Christopher Yoo, Europe trails the U.S. in broadband “deployment, investment and usage.” Yoo says, “The data speak for themselves, and the empirical evidence confirms that the United States is performing much better than Europe in the high-speed broadband race … Worries that the U.S. is falling behind are severely misplaced.” Specifically, the study found:

  • The U.S. leads Europe 82 percent to 54 percent in 25 Mbps coverage;
  • Nearly half (48 percent) of rural U.S. households have access to speeds of up to 25 Mbps while in Europe that number is just 12 percent;
  • The U.S. leads Europe 86 percent to 27 percent in LTE coverage;
  • Broadband investment per household is two times greater in the U.S.; and
  • Entry-level broadband prices were lower in the U.S. than in Europe.

Read Professor Yoo’s full study here.