About Futuresource Consulting

Futuresource Consulting, the specialist research and consulting company, is delighted to be the official knowledge partner for CEATEC. The company can trace its roots back to the 1980s and provides market insights into consumer electronics, digital imaging, entertainment media, broadcast, optical manufacturing, storage media, professional IT and education technology.
With more than 70 full-time employees providing in-depth analysis and forecasts across consumer and professional electronics categories, Futuresource is able to advise on market, competitive and technological developments, providing clients with access to the information that helps produce the best possible results.

Vol.072011/9/28

The Future of the Fixed Broadband Market

The continued rise in the consumption of digital content in the home, whether through a laptop, PC, connected TV, games console or Blu-ray player has led to an increased demand for higher speed fixed broadband connections. Even tablet and smartphone use may be influencing the market to some extent, due to the wi-fi connectivity inherent in these devices. And driven by government investments, broadband connectivity and speeds continue to grow worldwide, with most of this growth coming from emerging markets.

The Asia-Pacific region accounts for the majority of worldwide home broadband connections, with China leading the way, on track to reach more than 150 million broadband subscribers by the end of 2011. In contrast, India's fixed broadband development is very slow, as the government's focus has been on the auction of 3G mobile networks. It remains to be seen whether, over the longer term, there is growth for fixed broadband within India, as penetration rates are very low at the moment – around 6% - and it shouldn't take much movement to impact upon the marketplace. Futuresource projections indicate approximately 12% penetration in India by the year 2015, though mobile internet growth is far stronger and this will continue.

Looking to Western Europe, most member countries are reaching saturation point, with household penetration settling in at around 70% to 90%. Germany, Italy and Spain are expected to witness some of the strongest growth rates in 2011, but even then the growth is just a few percentage points. Across in In North America, fixed broadband household penetration is also maturing, at over 70% in the USA and around 80% in Canada.

When it comes to broadband speeds, South Korea and Japan have been leading the way, with average achieved download speeds of approximately 32Mb/s and 30Mb/s respectively at the end of last year, driven primarily by the high investment from government and internet service providers in the early years of the 21st century. The Netherlands had the fastest broadband download speed in Europe with 10Mb/s, followed by Belgium, France and Sweden. In the US, the national average achieved last year was 5Mb/s, placing it just behind the UK.

As we move forward, download speeds will increasingly become the broadband battleground for internet service providers in developed countries, with investment in fibre optic-driven Internet access top of governments' agendas across the globe.

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