Updated March 28 at 4:28pm

R.I. ranks 11th in U.S. for broadband adoption


WASHINGTON – Rhode Island was ranked 11th on TechNet’s 2012 State Broadband Index. The political network of technology industry CEOs who are focused on innovation, ranked states based on broadband adoption, network quality and economic structure.

The report, “TechNet 2012 State Broadband Index: Where States Rank as They Look to High Speed Connectivity to Grow Strong Economies and Vibrant Communities,” was underwritten by Cisco.

Rhode Island ranked 11th with an index score of 117. A score of 100 is considered the national average. Comparatively, Washington, Massachusetts and Delaware earned the top three spots with respective scores of 152, 146 and 141. Arkansas ranked last with a score of 64.

According to the report, states that invest in their broadband networks see stronger economic growth than the states that don’t invest. The report pointed to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, which has said that high school graduates who are connected to the Internet are two times more likely to go to college as those who are not online.

“The TechNet State Broadband Index highlights the important role of the states in determining our nation’s broadband future,” Rey Ramsey, president and CEO of TechNet, said in a statement. “Simply put, broadband is the foundation for our nation’s continued technology and economic leadership. Broadband is shown to help create economic growth, job creation and many other benefits. We applaud all the states at the top of this index for their leadership in building the broadband infrastructure that is helping deliver economic success and improved quality of life for millions of our fellow citizens.”

According to the report, every few years, the National Telecommunications and Information Administration conducts large-scale national surveys to determine the number of Americans who are online and how many have broadband service at home.

Rhode Island’s broadband access increased from 59 percent in 2007 to 71 percent in 2010, the most recent available data. The national average for broadband access in 2010 was 68 percent.

For the full TechNet report, visit: www.technet.org.


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