Global fixed-broadband subscription numbers will reach half a billion this year, driven by continued growth in emerging markets, according to Informa Telecoms & Media.

Fixed-broadband markets of the wealthiest countries in the world are fast becoming saturated, but tens of millions of homes in some of the world’s largest markets, such as China and India, are still without broadband.

These underserved markets are poised to drive a second wave of broadband growth, creating opportunities for operators, investors and equipment vendors.
“Overall the number of net new fixed-broadband subscriptions grew in 2009 to over 480 million, largely as a result of accelerating growth in emerging markets and we expect this number to reach 500 million this year,” Rob Gallagher, principal analyst at Informa Telecoms & Media said in a statement.

Gallagher is lead author of the firm’s “Next 100 Million” report.

According to Informa, China, Russia, Mexico, India and Vietnam were among the countries with the greatest growth.

“China extended its lead over the US, and Russia overtook Italy to claim the No. 8 spot. India, Mexico, Turkey, the Ukraine and Vietnam look set to also grow strongly, provided that current trends continue,” Gallagher stated. 

Latest figures indicate that seven of the top 20 countries by fixed-broadband sub count at end of September 2009 could be classified as emerging markets. (For more, see table below.)

Global, countries by fixed-broadband subs, end Sept-09
(rounded to nearest million)

  1. China        91
  2. US            83
  3. Japan        31
  4. Germany   25
  5. France       19
  6. UK            18
  7. Korea        16
  8. Russia       12
  9. Italy          12
  10. Brazil        11
  11. Spain        10
  12. Canada     10
  13. Mexico       9
  14. India          8
  15. Netherlands6
  16. Turkey       6
  17. Australia    6
  18. Poland       6
  19. Taiwan       6
  20. Argentina   4

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