The Internet & Television Association (NCTA) released a COVID-19 Internet Dashboard to provide a broadband use snapshot last week. Since early March, many Americans have been working and learning from home, increasing the strain on communications networks. The aggregated data represents information from data and cable internet service providers for tens of millions of homes and businesses.
Although so many Americans are now homebound and working, e-learning, and streaming videos, the data shows “broadband networks are meeting this unprecedented challenge and delivering a quality experience,” according to the association.
Regarding usage, while overall national consumer downstream peak usage is up 19 percent overall since March 1, last week saw a slight decrease of one percent. Another statistic regarding usage shows that overall, the national consumer upstream peak growth is still increasing – up four percent week over week – but at a lower level than seven percent reported two weeks ago. Since March 1, national upstream peak growth has seen a 33 percent increase. The NCTA noted that one more week of observation is necessary before making a trend conclusion that consumer usage and demand is leveling off.
The NCTA reported that cable broadband is handling the increased demand well. The reason is that network operators build not just to “cover the demands of today,” but anticipate usage 12-18 months into the future.