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Broadband Use Broadens, Narrowband Use Narrows
Jan 2003
NEW YORK, Jan. 17 -- More than 33.6 million Internet users accessed the Web at home via high-speed connections in December 2002, a 59 percent year-over-year increase, according to media analyst Nielsen//NetRatings.

Broadband users also spent more time online, conducted more online visits and viewed more pages than narrowband Web surfers during the month, the company said. High-speed surfers spent an average of 17 hours and 20 minutes online last month, while dialup users averaged less than 10 hours during the same timeframe. Broadband users also conducted nearly 15 more visits while viewing more than 1,300 pages per person, more than double the pages accessed by their narrowband counterparts.

Even though most of the US online population use narrowband, dial-up access declined 10 percent last month, Nielsen//NetRatings said. More than 74.4 million accessed the Internet via narrowband with connection speeds from 14.4 to 56 K.

"2002 marked an entire year of decline for narrowband usage at home," said Greg Bloom, senior Internet analyst at Nielsen//NetRatings. "As the broadband infrastructure continues to expand across the US, we expect to see the mainstream online population convert to higher speeds."

Men made up 52 percent of all broadband users, while 53 percent of all narrowband surfers were women, the company said. Older Internet users were the fastest growing segment using broadband; broadband use among teenagers rose 66 percent in December to nearly 4.2 million, and there were 3 million users in the 2-11 age range, a 62 percent jump since last year.

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