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If you’ve been waiting for faster broadband internet services, your wait may soon come to an end. While connections over 500 Mbps are already available in many areas, we’re seeing more and more gigabit (1000 Mbps) and multi-gig internet services pop up.
If the news coming from the broadband internet sector is any indication, we will see fiber footprints expand and an increase in multi-gig offerings over the next couple of years.
Some providers have already surpassed the gigabit barrier. Xfinity has been offering its 1,200 Mbps internet service for some time, but the provider has now boosted that speed to 3 Gbps in some markets. Frontier recently announced the launch of its 2 Gbps plan, while AT&T announced speeds up to 5 Gbps.
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Perhaps more compelling to the multi-gig narrative than the number of providers offering it is the large sums of money being invested in fiber infrastructure. While cable internet is capable of offering gigabit service, fiber certainly offers more potential for faster upload speeds and opens up avenues for future expansion and development.
Why the Gigabit Increase?
According to the Fiber Broadband Association (FBA), 2022 is shaping up to be the year in which fiber expansion begins to skyrocket and multi-gig services become more widely available. But what is driving the fiber push? In a word, the market.
Alone, Cox has a multi-billion dollar, multi-year plan to build out its fiber infrastructure, which will support speeds up to 10 Gbps. Last year, AT&T announced plans to double its fiber footprint to 30 million subscribers.
It’s not just the big players that are dropping huge amounts of money into fiber development. Regional and local operators are making significant plays to upgrade their networks as well. In some cases, regional operators are even selling off certain market assets to raise funds to invest in fiber infrastructure.
Providers are serious about expanding their fiber networks and pushing the internet “speed barrier”. And for the amounts of money they are investing in this effort, there is ample evidence of the demand for multi-gig internet speeds to either continue or accelerate.
Seemingly, the only thing that may slow down fiber development is the same thing plaguing many other industries at this time: Labor and equipment shortages.
The time and money internet providers are investing in their fiber networks will have lasting benefits. The most obvious benefit is that if fiber is not currently available to you and you’ve been waiting to get access to gigabit or better speeds, you may find it available in your area sooner rather than later.
We predict that major metropolitan areas will be the first to see rapid expansion in fiber availability. Providers want a return on their investment as soon as possible after all. Densely populated areas make the most sense to begin expansion and deployment, given the opportunity to quickly attract internet upgrades and new subscribers.
In addition, you can expect to see more competition amongst providers for subscribers in the next couple of years, which could lead to cheaper internet rates. And it is reasonable to expect this competition and jockeying for territory to affect how cable and DSL providers price their services as well.
But the main benefit to all of us is that faster and more reliable internet service to millions of people is on the horizon. Multi-gig broadband internet provides stability for remote workers, smooth connections for gamers, and faster download and upload speeds for torrent sites and file sharing.
Overall, households with multiple users and devices simultaneously accessing the internet will reap significant benefits from gigabit speeds.
Multi-Gig Internet Providers
Many providers have recently launched or already offer internet speeds above 1 Gbps. Have a look at these providers to see if you’re in an area where they offer it:
Enter your zip code below to see what plans are available to you. If fiber internet is not currently in your area, check back here periodically as providers are rapidly expanding their fiber offerings.
Enter your zip code to see providers near you
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