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FTTH and Wireless Boom as World Fixed Broadband Subs Hit 1.112bn

Friday, Jan 24th, 2020 (12:01 am) - Score 1,950
world internet connectivity

The latest report from Point Topic has revealed that global fixed broadband subscribers grew by 2.17% (23.6 million) in Q3 2019 to total 1.112 billion. During the past year copper (ADSL etc.) based lines fell by 7.7% while almost every other technology, particularly FTTH and fixed wireless connectivity, grew.

The United Kingdom continues to be the 8th largest country for subscribers with a total of around 27 million, although the USA and China continue to dominate the top spots with respective totals of around 125 million and 400 million+. Indeed China also continued to be the largest growth market for Fibre-to-the-Home (FTTH) technology, with 69.6% of global net adds in Q3 2019 (15m net additions).

Perhaps unsurprisingly, given China’s influence above, nearly 65% of all net additions in fixed broadband subscribers came from East Asia, which also retained the largest regional market share of all subscribers at 47%. By comparison the whole of Europe only accounted for a regional market share of 21.31% and North America (USA, Canada) were third on 11.69%.

However, in terms of the ever changing market shares by different technologies between Q3 2018 and Q3 2019, both wireless (mostly fixed wireless access) and “full fibre” (FTTH) networks continue to be the main areas of growth. “Wireless (mostly FWA) and satellite saw healthy growth as these technologies are increasingly used to cover broadband ‘white spots’,” said the analyst firm (we assume in this context that they mean remote areas of poor fixed line coverage).


point topic q3 2019 fibre broadband market share

Elsewhere it’s noted that Belgium, Thailand, Ireland and Brazil among others also saw significant FTTH quarterly growth rates of 25%, 22%, 21% and 19% respectively. Sadly Point Topic only provides a brief summary and so we don’t know how the UK compares with these figures, although FTTH has been growing rapidly over the past year and now covers around 3 million (11%) premises in the country (here).

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By Mark Jackson
Mark is a professional technology writer, IT consultant and computer engineer from Dorset (England), he also founded ISPreview in 1999 and enjoys analysing the latest telecoms and broadband developments. Find me on X (Twitter), Mastodon, Facebook and .
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2 Responses
  1. Avatar photo Freedom345 says:

    What about cable broadband? What are the growth rates for this alternative method ?

    1. Mark-Jackson Mark Jackson says:

      As above, 3.6% over the past year. Cable tends to be a steady technology since DOCSIS 3.1 is able to help them get Gigabit speeds out of their hybrid fibre coax and thus stay competitive. But a lot of cable operators are also extending and / or replacing their networks with FTTH.

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