State’s broadband adoption outpaces national average

State’s broadband adoption outpaces national average

Connected Tennessee recently announced the release of the second edition of Tennessee’s Technology Trends, which reveals that today, one half of all Tennesseans have broadband service at home, up from 43 percent just six months ago. The two-part assessment tracks the use and impact of computers, the Internet and broadband technology among Tennessee residents and businesses. The survey was first conducted in July 2007 and six months later in January 2008, with the results revealing an impressive increase in broadband adoption — especially in the rural areas of Tennessee where Connected Tennessee is focusing the majority of its attention.
• Today, one half of all Tennesseans have broadband service at home, up from 43 percent in July. This is a growth rate of over 16 percent in just six months.
• Tennessee’s broadband adoption rate grew significantly faster over the past six months than the national average of 8 percent during a similar time period.
• The areas of Tennessee that showed the most impressive spike in broadband growth are the rural counties with a growth rate of 37 percent — the counties in which Connected Tennessee is most heavily engaged.
“Technology is the key to the future, and we want to make that future a reality for all Tennesseans,” says Gov. Phil Bredesen. “Connected Tennessee’s concentrated efforts on rural Tennessee have helped stimulate technology and broadband adoption in those areas of the state in recent months.”
Tennessee businesses also saw a 16 percent growth in broadband adoption over the past six months.
• Today, 64 percent of businesses in Tennessee have broadband service, up from 55 percent in July.
• Small businesses, or businesses with 20 employees or less, showed the most significant jump in broadband adoption, increasing from 61 percent to 77 percent.
• A direct correlation is apparent between the presence of a broadband connection and higher company revenue. Tennessee businesses with a broadband Internet connection have median annual revenues of more than two times greater than businesses that rely on dial-up service.
“This survey shows us that Internet and broadband adoption rates grew fastest in rural counties and among small businesses over the past six months,” says Connected Tennessee’s executive director, Michael Ramage. “The majority of the counties actively engaged in Connected Tennessee’s eCommunity Strategies are rural counties. It is encouraging to see that Connected Tennessee’s strategy to encourage broadband adoption and make it available to everyone, no matter where they live, is working.”
Tennessee’s Technology Trends involved more than 1,000 Tennesseans and 800 businesses representing each of Tennessee’s 95 counties. The complete survey can be downloaded from Connected Tennessee’s Web site at www.connectedtennessee.com/research.
The data gathered from Tennessee’s Technology Trends 2007 will help Connected Tennessee localize efforts to improve technology availability and adoption among Tennessee residents and businesses. Connected Tennessee’s mission is to close the digital divide in Tennessee by creating and growing a collaborative network among telecommunications and information technology providers, public agencies, business and community leaders, researchers and universities in an effort to meet the five comprehensive goals of Governor Bredesen’s Trail to Innovation:
• Affordable broadband technology for all Tennesseans.
• Dramatically improved use of computers and the Internet.
• The formation of eCommunity Leadership Teams in every county.
• A policy and regulatory framework that encourages continued investment in communications and information technologies.
• A meaningful online presence for all Tennessee communities.
Connected Tennessee is leading the way into a new economy for Tennesseans. As Tennessee’s technology-based economic development partnership, Connected Tennessee is a public-private alliance of leaders from private industry, government and education. By leveraging the latest in technology and networking, Connected Tennessee is ensuring Tennessee remains the place of choice to work, live and raise a family.
Published in The Messenger 5.19.08

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