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Broadband Availability & Adoption

March 8, 2022
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WRITTEN BY Dr. Tomy Granzier-Nakajima

Executive Summary 

Broadband availability does not guarantee that individuals will subscribe to, or adopt, broadband internet services. The highest rates of broadband adoption are found in areas with high levels of  income and education. Racial differences also contribute to these inequalities, with Black and Hispanic adults reporting lower rates of home broadband ownership than White adults. 


  • The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) estimated broadband availability across the U.S. in 2019 to be 95.6% while broadband adoption was estimated to be 69.4%.
  • A study of 2011 broadband adoption data attributed 38% of the difference in broadband adoption between rural and urban areas to differences in broadband infrastructure availability.
  • Respondents to a Pew research survey stated that, despite having access to broadband, cost was a large reason for not having household broadband.


  • It is not clear how well studies of broadband adoption data from several years ago translate to the 2022 broadband market.
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