Global DSL adoption is quickly outstripping cable subscriptions in all regions of the world except North America, newly published research has found.
ABI Research's latest global survey of broadband subscribers found that DSL's share of new subscribers has jumped from 29 to 40 per cent in the past year, while consumers elsewhere are signing up for DSL at nearly double the rate of cable.
Joseph Yau, a research analyst at ABI, said that DSL's traditional drawback - a lower data transmission rate - is vanishing in many parts of the world as ADSL2 delivers rates equal to cable's. And ADSL2+ will soon deliver even faster rates.
This will allows telcos to offer the video services that have long been the exclusive preserve of cable. Such higher-speed services are already available in Asia and Europe, and should start to appear in North America this year, according to ABI.
"DSL vendors are trying to make up for their lack of data rate with the addition of more added benefits," said Yau.
But the cable companies are not giving up without a fight. ABI predicts that many will counter by invading the telcos' turf, offering cellular or other voice services in addition to their usual fare.
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