ID Insight ranks Arkansas as top U.S. state for broadband competition

In the first national study of broadband service providers’ market share, data-and-analytics firm ID Insight and industry analyst Craig Settles found Arkansas to have the most competitive environment nationwide.

APRIL 22, 2010 -- In the first national study of broadband service providers’ market share, data-and-analytics firm ID Insight and industry analyst Craig Settles found Arkansas to have the most competitive environment nationwide. The rankings in the study, “The State of Broadband Competition in America – 2010,” are based on market-share distribution analysis of states’ top-10 broadband providers.

Using more than two million data points nationwide, ID Insight’s BroadBand Scout database determined market share within each state and the District of Columbia. Arkansas was ranked as the country’s most competitive state, followed by North Dakota and South Carolina. Hawaii and Rhode Island ranked 50th and 51st, respectively.

The complete report, including the methodology used, is available at no charge at www.idinsight.com/broadband.asp. According to Settles and ID Insight president Adam Elliott, the data dispels the assumption by some that broadband competition in the United States is robust, and that consumers have many choices.

“Because competition continues to be a major point of contention within the broadband industry, we wanted to generate an accurate and, above all, unbiased picture of the competitive landscape,” says Elliott. “The BroadBand Scout database observes usage and carrier information across the country, allowing us to rank states by level of competitiveness, and see how factors such as population density, percentage of rural versus urban areas, and Internet usage and speeds consumed affect a state’s ranking.”

“The state of competition within the broadband industry continues to be a significant issue, and it’s absolutely critical to utilize objective data to shape the discussion as we move forward,” says Settles. “BroadBand Scout is the first resource to effectively deliver that data, and provides a valuable jumping-off point as we continue this important conversation.”

The authors drew several additional conclusions from their research, including:
• There is a strong correlation between income and home value and the level of competiveness in a state. As income and home values show an increase from state to state, the level of competition – as measured by the report – decreases.
• States with the largest percentage of Internet users and the highest available speed tend to be less competitive.
• The bulk of broadband stimulus funding did not go to states with the least competitive environments.

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