The 20 largest U.S. cable and telecom providers – which represent about 94 percent of the market – added about 1.3 million net high-speed Internet subscribers in the third quarter of 2008.
Overall, cable operators and telcos added only 61 percent of the net additions gained in the third quarter of 2007 – with cable having 82 percent as many additions as a year ago, and telcos having 40 percent as many additions as in Q3 2007.
In the quarter, the top cable operators added more than 870,000 subscribers, representing 67 percent of the net broadband additions, according to data from Leichtman Research Group (LRG).
These top 20 cable and telco operators now account for some 66.7 million subscribers nationwide, with cable ops having 36.5 million subscribers (or 54.7 percent) and telcos having 30.2 million subscribers (or 45.3 percent).
“Over the past two quarters, the top cable providers accounted for 71 percent of the net broadband additions, adding over 900,000 more broadband subscribers than the top telcos,” said Bruce Leichtman, president and principal analyst for LRG. “Cable’s recent success compared to the telcos should not necessarily be interpreted as consumers suddenly choosing cable’s speed advantage over that of the telcos' DSL service. It is more a function of the telcos' shift in focus toward higher-value subscribers, while cable has been consistent in marketing broadband as part of its nearly ubiquitously available triple-play bundles.”
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