Press Releases

Internet Innovation Alliance Applauds Decade of Success in Broadband Adoption and Deployment, Looks to Next Steps


WASHINGTON, D.C. – March 16, 2010 – Bruce Mehlman and David Sutphen, co-chairmen of the Internet Innovation Alliance (IIA), a diverse coalition that first called for a National Broadband Strategy in July 2008 and has been advocating for universal broadband, competition and innovation in the space for 6 years, today released the following statements in support of the Federal Communication Commission’s newly released National Broadband Plan:

From David Sutphen

“The Internet is the great equalizer and enabler in today’s global, digital economy – those not online have the most to lose. We are thrilled to see many months of collaboration between the public and private sectors come to bear in a historic National Broadband Plan.”

“We’ve come a long way in the development of high-speed Internet, and going forward, the people who can benefit most from broadband connectivity should be the focus of every discussion on Internet policy. The plan provides a great opportunity to extend the power of connectivity to all Americans, consistent with the President’s goals and vision.”

From Bruce Mehlman

“I applaud the FCC for presenting an ambitious plan that sets goals for greater broadband availability, adoption and speeds – all key to the advancement of our economic, health care and educational systems. 

“The National Broadband Plan both highlights a decade of success and innovation in Internet technology and lays out the work that remains ahead. It has been estimated that hitting the targets outlined in the plan, including at least 90 percent broadband adoption by 2020, could cost as much as $350 billion. This plan could be powerful and positive provided strict new regulations are not imposed to undermine investment.”

Then and Now

  • In 1996, the cable and telecommunications industry invested $5.7 billion in infrastructure; since then, they have invested more than $161.2 billion.

  • In 1999, there were just 105 different broadband providers across the United States; today, the FCC reports that there are nearly 1,400.

  • In 2000, there were approximately 7 million broadband lines; now there are more than 132 million.

  • In June 2000, 59 percent of U.S. zip codes had at least one high-speed Internet service provider available; today, broadband has been deployed to 100 percent of zip codes across the country and only 6 percent of U.S. homes don’t have access to any broadband services, according to the FCC.

  • According to the NTIA, 4.4 percent of U.S. households had adopted broadband Internet in August 2000; as of October 2009, this number had multiplied to 63.5 percent of U.S. households.

  • According to IIA Broadband Ambassador Bret Swanson, monthly Internet traffic was approximately 170 million gigabytes in 2004; as of October 2009, monthly traffic measured two billion gigabytes — a tenfold leap.

  • On July 30, 2008, the Internet Innovation Alliance was first out of the gate calling for a National Broadband Strategy; now, the Federal Communications Commission officially presents its National Broadband Plan to Congress.