What Can Be Done About The Growing Broadband Gap In The U.S.?

There’s good news and bad news about broadband coming out of newly released Census data, courtesy of the Commerce Department. The good news is that more people than ever before now have broadband, with 63.5 percent of all households now subscribing to a broadband service. That’s up from 9.2 percent from way back in 2001. Read that carefully: that’s up from 9.2 percent, not merely up 9.2 percent. The bad news?

The bad news is that there’s a very real “broadband gap” that appears to be developing along socio-economic lines.

Roughly, the more money you make (which generally correlates to your level of educate) the more likely you are to have broadband.

If the Internet, and broadband specifically, was supposed to be the great equalizer, how is it supposed to equalize anything of only the well-off have access to it?

It works out like this: 94.1 percent of households making $100,000 or more per year subscribe to broadband, while only 35.8 percent of households making less than $25,000 or less per year subscribe to broadband.

84.5 percent of households with at least one college degree under the roof subscribe to broadband, while high school degree households come in at 28.8 percent.

As for race or ethnicity, always a prickly topic in the U.S., 47.9 percent of Hispanic household subscribe to broadband. African-American households are at 49.4 percent. Non-Hispanic white households come in at 68 percent.

The most broadband crazy? That would be Asian-American households, with 77.3 percent of such households subscribing to broadband.

Now you know.