Analysis says $7.2B falls woefully short to achieve universal access

Insight Research said the $7.2 billion in broadband stimulus funding granted and loaned to entities willing to bridge the digital divide is not nearly close to enough to deploy truly universal broadband access.

The firm's analysis of January 2008 FCC data indicates that the number of households either without Internet service or using dial-up connections is about 58 million--about half of the households in the U.S. Insight Research further projects that some 40 million homes will continue to be without broadband access by the close of 2014. That figure was then divided by the actual amount of funds going toward broadband deployments to determine that the $7.2 billion in funds translates into just $164 per household.

Insight Research says $1,500 per household is the cost to deploy broadband. As such the amount of money needed for universal access is $60 billion--nearly seven times what the government is allocating.

"Certainly the current administration recognizes the direct relationship between extending broadband access to all Americans and the future health of our economy, but the current allocation of funds is just not going to get the job done," said Robert Rosenberg, president of Insight Research, in a statement.

For more:
- see this Wireless Week article

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