Global fixed broadband subscriber number forecasts to Dec 2021

1bn fixed broadband lines predicted by the end of 2021

Point Topic have updated their five-year global broadband subscriber number forecasts. We look at how the market is expected to evolve in the next 5 years.

Global broadband subscriber growth in the next 5 years

Point Topic predicts the number of worldwide fixed broadband lines will break through the 1bn barrier to  reach 1.02bn by the end of 2021. The forecast is based on individual growth calculations for 114 countries along with combined ‘rest of the world’ growth calculations for the remaining countries. Our projections are made at quarterly intervals up to December 2021. More details on the forecasting methodology are included later in this report.Global fixed broadband lines to December 2021 - source Point Topic

 Figure 1: World broadband subscriber forecasts to 2021. Source – Point Topic.

Broadband subscriber growth by region

Differences in broadband subscriber growth across the world are driven by how developed the market is within particular countries and regions. While the South and East Asia region already has twice the number of broadband connections when compared to the next biggest broadband region (Western Europe), the growth potential remains huge and numbers are expected to continue growing at a healthy rate through to 2021 and beyond. All regions apart from South and East Asia are expected to report slow but steady growth until at least 2021. Individual forecasts for each country at quarterly intervals for every quarter up to the end of 2021 are available in Point Topic’s Global Broadband Statistics service.

Global fixed broadband lines by region to December 2021 - source Point TopicFigure 2: World broadband forecasts to 2021 by region. Source – Point Topic

How do we forecast broadband subscriber numbers?

Point Topic uses the Gompertz Curve to forecast global broadband growth. The Gompertz Curve has been used for modelling consumer behaviour in a number of instances for at least the last 50 years. It has proven to be an accurate and powerful tool for predicting the diffusion of technology products through a consumer universe.

Broadband forecasts are generated for the 114 countries with the highest broadband subscriber numbers, as well as a general curve addressing growth in the rest of the world.

Point Topic’s forecasts use the following inputs:

  • Broadband subscribers – every quarter, Point Topic updates its database of broadband subscriber numbers across the world. The full database is available to our Global Broadband Statistics subscribers. This historical data is used as the basis for our forecasts.
  • Population forecasts – we use population forecasts published by the UN.
  • Household forecasts – we use estimates of the number of people per household to forecast growth in households

We then calculate the following variables for each of the markets covered:

  • Coverage – coverage defines the total addressable audience and is therefore set as the upper limit for broadband subscriptions. We forecast coverage growth over time.
  • Inception date – how many quarters since the technology was adopted in that market? This will affect the growth rate.
  • Growth factor – the speed of adoption (diffusion) of fixed broadband in a particular market. This is an indicator of how accessible, both economically (consumers can afford it) and in terms of availability (the service is present for a consumer in a particular place), fixed broadband is. This will vary from market to market.

Using these inputs we generate a forecast of broadband subscriptions in each of the 114 markets covered and for the rest of the world. These forecasts are inspected manually and adjusted to account for local market knowledge.

Find out more

Individual forecasts for 114 countries at quarterly intervals up to December 2021 are published in Point Topic’s Global Broadband Statistics service. Please telephone +44 (0)20 3301 3303 or e-mail [email protected] for more details.