The price paid for broadband connections has fallen 50% since early 2008, as carriers slash prices in the face of growing competition, research by Point Topic shows.
DSL prices have tumbled the most during that time, falling from around $100 (€72) per month in 1Q08 to just under $40 by 4Q10, as rollout of fiber networks gains traction, the firm’s analysis of 3,000 global broadband tariffs found.
Fiber prices remained relatively stable at just above $80 per month throughout 2009 and into early 2010, but fell to around $70 per month by the end of the year. Cable prices have fallen steadily from $100 per month to just over $40 by end 4Q10.
The fall in costs on fiber and cable networks is squeezing DSL prices, however Point Topic predicts the technology still has a role to play in emerging markets where consumers don’t need always-on, high-speed, access.
“Many users do not use their broadband for more than a couple of hours a day and when they do it’s often for applications that use relatively little bandwidth,” Point Topic chief Oliver Johnson states. “They care much less about the cost per megabit, where fiber has the edge, than about the upfront and monthly charges and DSL wins that battle hands down.”
While DSL refuses to lie down without a fight, the research firm expects fiber connections to grow rapidly in developed markets where consumers are increasingly accessing high-bandwidth content.
Countries including Japan, Korea and Australia will increasingly turn to fiber, as the high number of end-to-end connections fuels fiber to the building services, Johnson notes.