Broadband internet has revolutionized nearly every aspect of modern life. From shopping and working from home to high-performance gaming, it’s hard to imagine daily life without some form of high-speed internet. While most of us have been enjoying it for years or even decades, others have been left in the virtual dark – up until now.
What is High-Speed Internet?
Digital Subscriber Line, or DSL, is the most common high-speed internet connection in the world. Cable internet, however, isn’t far behind. In fact, when it comes to overall speed, cable internet is the clear winner. Yet another option, fiber, is even faster than cable – but it has yet to see widespread availability in the country.
But what exactly is high-speed internet? The days of dial-up modems and early broadband access aren’t far behind us and, with so many options and service providers available to consumers today, internet access in the U.S. is still rather sporadic.
Modern high-speed internet is considered any internet connection with a download speed of 25 megabits per second (Mbps) or higher and an upload speed of at least 3Mbps. With this standard in mind, it’s safe to say that there are many households in the United States – and around the globe – that have yet to experience an online connection of these speeds.
Upgrades Are Coming
According to recent stats, more than 90% of U.S. households currently have access to high-speed internet. Moreover, 85% of households are capable of reaching internet speeds up to 250 Mbps. However, this doesn’t mean that everyone has it.
Not only do we need to account for the remaining 10%, most of which live in remote or impoverished regions, but we also need to account for the low-income families who just can’t afford it. Some of these families are currently using satellite connections or, in some cases, archaic dial-up modems. That is, of course, if they have any sort of home internet access whatsoever.
Thanks to a recent $1.2 trillion infrastructure package in the U.S., which was signed into law by President Biden, the country is looking forward to bolstering the infrastructure in a number of areas – including IT. With a total of $14 billion earmarked specifically for assisting low-income households with their internet bill, and a grand total of $65 billion allocated toward IT infrastructure in general, the U.S. is about to become even more connected to one another than ever before.
During the bill signing, President Biden remarked: “America is moving again, and your life is going to change for the better.”
We already understand the benefits of high-speed internet access by now. Between work-from-home opportunities, virtual classrooms, and the additional resources that the internet provides, it’s important to give all our citizens equal access to its contents.
Although this recent infrastructure expansion doesn’t implement high-speed internet around the globe, it’s certainly closing the gap in the United States. Hopefully we’ll see a ripple effect in some of those other, impoverished and remote areas coming within the next few years.
Broadband Made More Accessible Under New U.S. Infrastructure Law
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