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Forecast: Broadband usage 1TB per month by 2028

February 8, 2024

Broadband consumption is on track to approach or surpass 700 GB per month by the end of this year and a Terabyte within the next five years, according to the latest edition of the OpenVault Broadband Insights (OVBI) report.

Average monthly broadband usage surged above 600 GB for the first time in 2023, ending the year at 641 GB per month and extending a multi-year trend of 9 per cent+ annual increases in consumption. In its Q4 2023 edition, OVBI projects that continued growth at the same pace would push the average per subscriber amount of data consumed past the 1TB per month mark by the end of 2028.

The Q2 2023 report also observed the continued rapid growth of high-volume users. The percentages of power users of 1 TB or more and of super power users of 2 TB or more have soared 437 per cent and 1,235 per cent, respectively, since 2018, while a newly identified category of extreme power users of 5 TB or more has risen by 71 per cent in the last year alone. In addition, commercial customers are contributing to significant growth in upstream traffic, which has risen by 158.48 per cent since 2018.

“The combined impact of these growth factors is amplifying the need for increased operator focus on network performance and Quality of Experience (QoE), especially as operators deploy DOCSIS 3.1 and DOCSIS 4.0 technologies,” the report notes. “Studies show that slow or inconsistent internet speed and repeated connection issues erode customer satisfaction and loyalty more than any other factor.”

Key findings in the report include:

  • The monthly average data usage was 641 GB, up 9.3 per cent year over year from 586.7 GB at the end of 2022 and up 16.5 per cent from the 550.2 GB in Q3 2023.
  • The 71 per cent rise in extreme power users of 5 TB or more was just part of the meteoric growth across all power user categories: power users of 1 TB or more per month now account for more than one-fifth of all subscribers, at 21.6 per cent; while the percentage of super power users grew 37 per cent to 4.7 per cent.
  • Nearly 40 per cent of all users provisioned for gigabit speeds are power users.
  • Commercial subscribers’ 68 GB of monthly upstream usage is 74 per cent higher than the 39 GB used monthly by residential subscribers.

Categories: Articles, Broadband, Consumer Behaviour, Research

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