American Broadband: Setting the Pace for Global Competitiveness

Issue Brief American Broadband: Setting the Pace for Global Competitiveness

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American consumers have access to some of the world’s most robust and resilient broadband connections. This is no accident—it is a result of decades of sustained and deliberate investment, spurred by competition, all to the benefit of American consumers. In fact, America’s broadband providers have invested nearly $1.8 trillion over the past 25 years into America’s broadband networks—the near equivalent of the recent American Rescue Plan to bolster the entire American economy! And in the last few years, broadband providers have invested approximately $80 billion each year.

U.S. households connect with broadband speeds twice the world’s average and the 6th fastest among all 37 OECD member countries, despite its ranking in the bottom third by population density. This is remarkable given that broadband deployment economics are directly driven by population density—the more people per square mile the more economic it becomes to deploy.

  • 92% of Americans have access to 100 Mbps speeds—up from only 10% a decade ago.
  • 87% of Americans have access to Gigabit speeds today—this technology simply was not even available a decade ago.


Americans are paying less than ever for broadband service, while getting more value for their broadband buck. For the most popular speed tier, in 2020, U.S. consumers paid 20% percent less for 16% percent faster speeds than what they had just five years ago.

And Americans put their network’s capacity to use, consuming more broadband data per capita than anywhere else in the world. This could not be possible if U.S. broadband was not accessible, affordable and capable.

Download the Issue Brief (PDF)