ABS registers significant jump in 24Mbps+ connections

Dial-up not dead yet though

The number of Australian Internet connections that deliver a speed of 24 megabits per second or faster grew by more than a quarter between December 2012 and December 2013, according to figures released today by the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

In December last year more than 2 million Australians Internet subscribes now have access to 24Mbps+ connections, according to the ABS' six-monthly Internet Activity report; an increase of around 27 per cent compared to 12 months earlier.

The ABS figures are based off Internet service providers that have more than 1000 customers. The vast bulk of connections covered in the report were classified as broadband, which the ABS considers to be connections of 256Kbps or faster. Some 12.39 million connections were classified as broadband, compared to 210,000 sub-broadband/dial-up connections.

The overwhelming majority of connections sat in the ADSL2+ range of 8-24Mbps.

The growth in high-speed Internet has been accompanied by a predictable growth in data consumption, ABS assistant director of innovation and technology, Lesley Martin, said in a statement.

"The total volume of data downloaded — excluding mobile handsets — reached 861,000TB for the three months to the end of December 2013, an increase of a third compared to the volume downloaded in the June quarter 2013," Martin said.

Previous editions of the ABS report have shown consolidation in Australia's ISP market. This edition showed there was the same number of ISPs with more than 1000 subscribers in December 2012 and December 2013; the numbers of 'medium', 'large' and 'very large' ISPs have shuffled slightly, however.

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1 Comment

Francis Young


Critically, this "advertised maximum speed" breakdown does not distinguish between fixed and mobile broadband. This makes it impossible to use as any kind of benchmark for the need for NBN services.

49% of the 12 million services in the ABS data were for mobile broadband. A typical household has a fixed service and 2 or more SIM card devices such as smartphones and iPads.

Without separating fixed and mobile speed breakdowns, this data is merely interesting, but not very useful. Perhaps a journalist could obtain the split from the ABS.


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