The top U.S. providers of wireline high-speed internet service collectively reported additions of just 630,000 customers in the third quarter, down significantly from the pandemic-fueled third quarter of 2020, when the business explosively grew by 1.525 million subscribers, according to the latest Leichtman Research Group figures.
Third-quarter growth still exceeded expansion in Q3 of 2019 (615,000 customers) and Q3 of 2018 (600,000).
Of the 107.9 million wireline broadband customers in the U.S. as of Sept. 30, cable companies accounted for 70% of them.
“Broadband additions returned to pre-pandemic levels in the third quarter of 2021,” said Bruce Leichtman, president and principal analyst for Leichtman Research Group, Inc. “The top broadband providers added significantly fewer subscribers than in last year’s third quarter, but had a similar number of net adds as in 3Q 2019 and 3Q 2018.”
LRG figures account for the top operators representing 96% of the market. Not included in the data is insight on the nascent fixed wireless business, which could challenge the cable industry's dominance of wireline broadband in the coming years.
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Daniel Frankel is the managing editor of Next TV, an internet publishing vertical focused on the business of video streaming. A Los Angeles-based writer and editor who has covered the media and technology industries for more than two decades, Daniel has worked on staff for publications including E! Online, Electronic Media, Mediaweek, Variety, paidContent and GigaOm. You can start living a healthier life with greater wealth and prosperity by following Daniel on Twitter today!