HOBOKEN, N.J.—While data usage moderated in Q1 2021, the OpenVault Broadband Insights report on data usage found that subscribers continue to upgrade to higher speeds, with the number of gigabit subscribers jumping by 261% from Q1 2020 and the number of gigabit subs increasing by 75% in a six month period.
With the increases, almost one-tenth (9.8%) of all subscribers were provisioned for gigabit speeds at the end of Q1 2021, compared to only 3.8% in Q1 2020 and 5.6% in Q3 2020.
The report also notes that slightly more than 80% of subscribers are provisioned for 100 Mbps speeds or higher, and that fewer than 5% are at 20 Mbps or slower.
The report also found that monthly weighted average usage was 461.7 GB, up nearly 15% from 402.5 GB in Q1 2020 but down 4.3% from 482.6 GB in Q4 2020. However, the slight quarter-to-quarter decline is in line with historical first-quarter trends, OpenVault reported.
Nearly all of the decline in monthly average usage occurred downstream. Monthly average upstream usage remained relatively flat when compared to the 31GB recorded in Q4 2020.
Usage-based billing operators are having more success at slowing the trajectory of bandwidth usage on their network than are flat-rate billing operators, the report stated, “despite UBB operators having a higher percentage of higher speed, higher ARPU subscribers. This widening gap in 1Q21 of total bandwidth usage between UBB networks vs. FRB networks and the revenue and profitability implications that it may represent bear watching.”
The entire report is available here.
George Winslow is the senior content producer for TV Tech. He has written about the television, media and technology industries for nearly 30 years for such publications as Broadcasting & Cable, Multichannel News and TV Tech. Over the years, he has edited a number of magazines, including Multichannel News International and World Screen, and moderated panels at such major industry events as NAB and MIP TV. He has published two books and dozens of encyclopedia articles on such subjects as the media, New York City history and economics.
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