Broadband signups have begun to slow in the U.S. as the market begins to reach a point of saturation, but the 17 largest telcos and cable companies nevertheless added nearly 1.1 million new subscribers in the first quarter of the year.
Leichtman Research Group said the top broadband providers now account for more than 91.5 million subscribers – with cable companies having the lion’s share of subscribers, about 56.3 million, compared to 35.2 million broadband subscribers for telcos.
The quarter’s broadband adds were down 8% from a year ago, but cable companies had a strong year, adding about 1,065,000 broadband subscribers in 1Q 2016 – 106% of the net additions for the top cable companies in 1Q 2015.
The top phone companies, meanwhile, added just 10,000 net new subscribers, down from a gain of 160,000 a year ago.
AT&T and Verizon together added about 300,000 U-verse and FiOS Internet subscribers in the quarter, but continued to shed DSL subs, down 324,000 in the quarter.
U.S. service providers added some 3.03 million broadband subs in the past 12 months, compared to 3 million adds in the previous 12 months.
Cable companies accounted for 111% of the total adds over the past year, LRG said.
For the quarter, Comcast added 438,000 subscribers, taking its industry-leading total to 23.77 million broadband subs, followed by 327,000 adds for Time Warner Cable and 155,000 adds for Charter Communications. Together, TWC and Charter have more than 19.36 million broadband subscribers.
AT&T is the largest telco broadband supplier with 15.76 million subs followed by Verizon with 9.22 million.
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