Subscriber Numbers Reach 16.8 Million for Digital Cable, 9.2 Million for Broadband Internet Access, 2.1 Million for Competitive Local Telephone Service
WASHINGTON, DC - The cable industry is maintaining solid growth in broadband services despite recent economic uncertainties, according to a survey of members of the National Cable & Telecommunications Association (NCTA) by the association’s research staff and data compiled from other publicly-traded broadband service providers. The number of units of new digital broadband services grew by nearly 2 million during the second quarter of 2002, the period of time from April 1 through June 30.
The number of digital cable customers totaled 16.8 million at the end of the quarter. Broadband Internet access customers grew to 9.2 million. And customers for cable’s competitive local telephone service increased to 2.1 million.
“Growing demand for cable's advanced services - particularly in the current market - points to the real value of our product to consumers,” said Robert Sachs, President & CEO, NCTA.
In order to more accurately reflect the entire cable industry’s growth in deploying broadband services, data from other broadband service providers, including non-traditional providers such as “overbuilders,” have been included in the industry totals. Totals from prior Quarters commensurately have been adjusted so as to validate comparisons to previous periods.
Broadband Internet Access
More than 912,000 new high speed cable modem subscribers signed up for the service during the quarter, comparable to second quarter 2001 growth. The total number of cable modem subscribers has grown more than 67 percent since the same period last year.
High speed Internet service via cable modem is now available to more than 75 million U.S. households. More than 9.2 million customers - 17 percent of homes with PCs passed by cable systems - now subscribe to cable’s broadband Internet service. Cable modem service features “always on” capability and allows access to the Internet at speeds many times faster than standard telephone dial-up service.
Also according to the NCTA survey, 890,000 new customers signed up for digital video service during second-quarter 2002, bringing the total number to 16.8 million - more than 37 percent growth since second quarter 2001. Nearly 25 percent of U.S. cable customers now subscribe to digital video services.
Digital video services provide viewers with dozens of new programming choices through the use of digital compression technology. More than 90 new digital cable channels have been launched, and additional video on demand services provide digital cable customers a choice of more than 350 movie titles a month.
Competitive Local Telephone Service
Additionally, 190,000 residential customers selected cable’s competitive telephone service during second quarter 2002, bringing the total number of cable phone customers to 2.1 million. The number of cable phone customers has increased more than 53 percent since second quarter 2001.
Cable phone service packages typically include numerous advanced features such as voice mail, caller ID, call waiting and call forwarding, and are deeply discounted when compared with the prices of incumbent local telephone providers.
Cable operators have invested more than $65 billion in private-risk capital since 1996 to upgrade their infrastructures to provide advanced broadband services such as digital video, high speed Internet service and cable telephone service.
NCTA is the principal trade association of the cable television industry in the United States. NCTA represents cable operators serving more than 90 percent of the nation's cable television households and more than 200 cable program networks, as well as equipment suppliers and providers of other services to the cable industry.