Cable, Not DSL Prices Sliding Faster


Contrary to popular belief and deep discounts by Bell operators in the US on their DSL services, it is cable modem broadband that is seeing faster price declines, according to Point Topic. Taking a more global look at the pricing trends of 34 of the largest broadband providers across the globe, the UK-based consultants have come to the conclusion that since March 2000, DSL prices are down 30% . However, the price declines were only 12% since March 2002. In comparison the price of entry level cable broadband since March 2003 is down 21%. Another stunning conclusion – after price parity, both DSL and Cable broadband are becoming cheaper in Europe, when compared with US.


Phil Hall

entry level cable broadband since March 2003 is down 21%

Yeah, entry level prices for cable are down – for the first 3 to 6 months. Then you have to start paying $40 – 55 a month, which is NOT lower than DSL pricing.

Om Malik


excellent points. actually i looked at the data after i posted it and yes it did include US companies, and also that the prices of entry level broadband via cable in the US also have falled substantially. I assume it is because of increased competition from DSL. Though in recent months when DSL has gone on a price cutting binge, the cable broadband prices have been relatively stable

John Thacker

Lower population density in the US is an issue as well, and US monopoly companies generally face universal access requirements as well.

US to Canada and Australia comparisons are the most interesting, due to population density and other factors.

John Thacker

Also, broadband got a stronger initial push in Europe because of the metered local calls, which made dial-up unacceptable far faster than in the US, where unmetered local calls subsidized modem access and kept (and has kept) people from switching as fast. That kept broadband as more of a luxury item in the US.

Mike Masnick

The rest of the world is a flip of the US… It’s only in the US where cable has such a commanding lead — so it’s no surprise to see cable dropping prices on a worldwide basis. Most of the stories talking about cable holding prices steady and DSL dropping are US-only.

As for the price declines in Europe, again, not sure it’s really “stunning.” Broadband competition there is much, much stronger, often because of regulations there (and, well, the lack of a really comprehensive policy here in the US which not only stymies some companies, but keeps others afraid of jumping into the market, as they don’t know what the FCC will mandate next).

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