Higher Usage Has 24% Broadband Users Planning to Upgrade in 2021

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The Covid-19 pandemic has no doubt created a major impact on the amount of time people spend online. A new Quantified Consumer study released by Parks Associates reveals more than half of all US broadband households in Q3 said their internet usage had increased since the beginning of the pandemic.

Consumers also reported that their broadband performance was able to keep up with their heavy usage, but in Q3 2020, 24% of fixed broadband households say they planned on upgrading to a higher speed anyway within the next six months. Earlier in Q2, only 18% of users had plans to upgrade.

At the same time, around 20% of households plan to switch to a new home internet provider within the next half-year, and about 15% are looking to downgrade to something less expensive.

Internet providers aren’t the only thing people are shopping around for. Adding OTT video services has seen a rise as well.

“Broadband upgrade plans indicate many households see some COVID-19-related changes as permanent,” said Steve Nason, Research Director, Parks Associates. “For video services, OTT service stacking has been particularly pronounced, with 45% of US broadband households subscribing to three or more OTT services. Many consumers are planning to add new services such as Disney+, Apple TV+, HBO Max, and Peacock as a permanent part of their OTT service portfolio, beyond the traditional Big 3: Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, and Hulu.”

“Many traditional pay-TV subscribers are migrating to online pay-TV offerings or standalone OTT services,” Nason said. “Traditional providers, who still comprise the majority of the pay-TV market, have to continually seek ways to integrate online video services into their offerings either through homegrown solutions or external partnerships.”

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