The state of Georgia has the 12th best broadband access ranking in the country in comparison to the rest of the United States. At this time, 35.8% of Georgians have access to fiber-optic service, which is significantly higher than the national average of 25% of consumers with access to the same. Additionally, 40.8% of Georgia’s residents have access to gigabit broadband internet services. According to user speed test data, Georgia’s average download speed is about 150.6 Mbps, which is higher than most states.
The Digital Divide in Georgia
When it comes to broadband, the term ‘digital divide’ is used to describe the gap between those who have access to affordable, high-speed wired internet services and those who do not. In Georgia, while the majority of the state is relatively well-connected, a number of counties still experience low broadband coverage, and not all residents have equal access to a low-priced plan.
For example, while 94.1% of Georgians have access to a wired connection capable of 25 Mbps download speeds or faster, there are 484,000 people in Georgia without access to the same caliber of connection. Additionally, despite there being 232 operational internet providers in Georgia, 286,000 people do not have access to a single internet provider, and another 927,000 people only have access to one provider at their place of residence.
As for pricing, affordability data reveals that 57.4% of Georgia’s population has access to what is considered a low-priced internet plan, costing $60 or less per month. In comparison, only 51.5% of Americans have access to the same on a nationwide scale.
In terms of broadband affordability, coverage, and speeds, a handful of cities in Georgia outrank the rest. The most well-connected cities in Georgia are Cumming, Alpharetta, Lawrenceville, Decatur, and Marietta, with the first in the list ranking highest in the state.
On the other hand, the top five worst-connected cities in Georgia are Nunez, Louvale, Siloam, Bluffton, and Rockledge, with the latter ranking lowest in the state. No residents in any of these cities have access to a low-priced wired internet plan.
Since 2010, federal grants amounting to $5,229,940 has gone toward the Georgia Technology Authority to fund the mapping and development of broadband within Georgia. Nearly another $70 million in federal funding has gone toward fueling broadband infrastructure within the state.
In 2018, state legislation launched the Georgia Broadband Deployment Initiative, which “calls for the promotion and deployment of broadband services throughout the state to unserved areas with a minimum of 25 Mbps download and 3 Mbps upload speeds.”
The information above is taken from a mix of public and private datasets. More about our data here.