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Broadband-Sub Count’s Up 2.5M

The top 20 cable and telco high-speed-Internet providers added a solid 2.5 million customers in the third quarter, with digital-subscriber-line carriers once again cutting into cable operators’ now-55% market share.

Leichtman Research Group’s latest report added up 1.33 million broadband net additions for the top phone-company providers, or 53% of broadband adds during the quarter. That marks eight consecutive quarters of telco market-share gains in broadband.

Top cable providers still have 28.1 million broadband customers compared with 22.7 million telco broadband customers, LRG said. LRG’s top 20 accounts for about 94% of broadband subscribers.

Total net broadband adds were down about 100,000 from the July-September period one year ago.

In the first quarter of this year, net broadband additions topped 3 million, a record. Adds slipped to 2.1 million net in the second quarter.

LRG, of Durham, N.H., said that through three quarters of this year, the top providers added more than 7.7 million net broadband customers.

Among cable providers, Comcast had the biggest quarter with 536,000 net new broadband subscriptions, followed by Time Warner Cable with 251,000 and privately owned Cox Communications with an estimated 75,000.

On the telco side, AT&T reported 374,000 net additions. Verizon Communications had 448,000. BellSouth (now part of AT&T) and Qwest Communications International added 176,000 and 175,000, respectively.

There were about 50.9 million broadband customers collectively as of Sept. 30, LRG said.