Internet and broadband subscriptions on the rise

Broadband speeds increase as does level of access

David Baker
by David Baker on 20th December, 2013

New research suggests that the number of broadband subscriptions in Ireland is on the increase, while customers are also enjoying quicker speeds and greater access.

The report, carried out by ComReg, showed that by the end of September 2013, internet subscriptions in Ireland rose by 0.6% in Q3, totalling 1,684,294 while broadband subscriptions also rose by 0.6%.

This meant broadband has risen by 1% since September 2012 while cable, satellite and fibre broadband connections have all increased.

A general trend across the last few years has seen internet connections increase from 43% in 2008 to 58% in 2010 and finally to 65% in 2012.

Meanwhile, DSL connections and fixed wireless access internet dropped in Q3 as did dedicated mobile broadband connections.

Around 83% of broadband connections are for residential purposes, while the final 17% are used for business connections.

Broadband speeds

ComReg’s quarterly report also showed that the estimated fixed broadband penetration rate was 58.8% in Q3, while average fixed broadband speeds continue to increase.

Approximately 42.1% of broadband speeds were greater than 10Mbps, a jump of more than 11% since Q3 2012.

At faster speeds, 32.5% of all fixed broadband subscriptions were equal or greater than 30Mbps, an increase from 19.9% in Q3 2012.

There were also more than 5.6 million mobile subscriptions in Ireland at the end of the last quarter, with the mobile penetration rate at 122.2% when including mobile broadband and Machine to Machine subscriptions.

Broadband penetration

This ‘Key Data Report for Q3 2013′ also revealed that there were more than 1.68 million active internet subscriptions in Ireland at the end of September, with 1,674,990 of these being broadband subscriptions.

The fixed penetration rate of 58.8% is calculated by excluding business and mobile broadband subscriptions.

Ireland’s fixed broadband per capita penetration rate of 24.7% remains behind the benchmarked EU28 average of 27.8% though.

Wi-Fi is also spreading across the country, with coverage in more locations than at any point previously with Wi-Fi hotspots becoming increasingly common in airports, hotels, cafes and restaurants.

The number of Wi-Fi hotspots and access points has increased by 52.1% and 25.3% respectively, when Q3 2013 is compared with the same quarter in 2012.

Meanwhile, the increasing use of tablets and Smartphones has led to an increase in Wi-Fi minutes by 102.6%.

Fixed broadband services across Ireland are compared to the rest of Europe and all packages were compared on the basis that they could be offered nationally.

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