Cable Reverses Broadband Share Losses To Telcos


The 19 largest cable and telephone providers acquired more than 2.2 million new high-speed Internet subscribers in the first three months of 2008, according to market researcher Leichtman Research Group.

According to the report, these top broadband providers now account for more than 64 million subscribers—with cable companies serving about 34.7 million customers and telephone companies providing service to roughly 29.5 million subscribers.

Cable and telephone companies now provide high-speed Internet to more than 94% of U.S. broadband customers.

For the first time since the third quarter of 2004, cable companies added more broadband subscribers than telephone providers.

In the first quarter, cable companies added 1.2 million subscribers, representing 54% of the net broadband addition in the quarter. Comcast led the way with 492,000 new subscribers followed by Time Warner Cable and Cox Communications with 304,000 and 120,000 new subscribers, respectively.

Among telephone companies, AT&T added 491,000 new subscribers, Verizon tacked on another 266,000 and Qwest picked up 90,000 subscribers.

“With telephone companies generally curtailing prior aggressive price-based offers to woo subscribers, the telcos added about two-thirds as many broadband subscribers as a year ago,” Bruce Leichtman, president and principal analyst for Leichtman Research Group, said in a statement.