According to this market study, with the number of customers on broadband plans at speeds of 500 Mbps or more per month approaching 20%, and with more than 13% of customers on 1 Gbps speed plans, the category of users super powerful saw 31% year-over-year growth in the first quarter of 22, 72% faster than the 18% growth for “power users” of 1TB or more during the same period.
Higher speed, more bandwidth consumption
The gigabit speed level (1 Gbps) grew 4.25 times between the fourth quarter of 2019 and the same period of 2021. That desire for more speed has implications for operators, since the faster the speed, the more bandwidth the clients consume.
The adoption of levels of 1 Gbps speed has accelerated in recent years for many reasons, including the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on user behavior. This trend of adopting the faster gigabit speed tier has been more prevalent with usage-based billing (UBB) carriers than with flat-rate billing (FRB) carriers.
Having more 1 Gbps customers on a network means more revenue, but it also means more data usage. According to the latest data from OpenVault at the end of last year, customers with a speed of less than 50 Mbps consume an average of 185 GB per month. On the other hand, those of 1 Gbps can reach an average of 1 TB.
- < 50 Mbps: 185 GB
- 50-100 Mbps: 352 GB
- 100-200 Mbps: 394 GB
- 200-400 Mbps: 630 GB
- 400-900 Mbps: 848 GB
- > 1 Gbps: 1,057 GB
Data Usage Europe vs United States
The most recent version of the study, corresponding to the first quarter of 2022, also shows the difference in use between two apparently equivalent areas in terms of Internet bandwidth consumption. If we put the set of European countries face to face against the United States, we can see that we are much more economical in monthly data use.
Average data usage in Europe (230.3 GB) decreased 3.4% from Q4 2021 (238.3 GB), highlighting seasonal usage patterns, which are similar to those seen in the United States and that increased use during the Christmas holidays. Average data usage in the United States (513.8 GB) was just over 2.2 times higher than average data usage in Europe (230.3 GB).
In this way, we see that in Europe consumption per household is only about 230 GB on average per monthan amount not too high if we take into account that we double in North America.