Ranked 9th in the US for broadband access, Massachusetts is one of the country’s top 10 best-connected states. The average statewide download speed is 188.2 Mbps, which is even faster than the top-ranking state in the US, New Jersey. The vast majority of Massachusetts’ population has access to a wired connection with 100 Mbps speeds, and 43.2% of Massachusettsans even have access to fiber-optic internet services, which is well above the national average of 25% of Americans with access to fiber.
The Digital Divide in Massachusetts
As is the case in every state, there remains a digital divide in Massachusetts between residents who have affordable, high-speed internet available to them and those who do not. This technological gap is seen in the following data.
While 97.8% of Massachusetts’ population has access to a wired broadband connection with speeds of 25 Mbps or faster, 147,000 people in Massachusetts still do not have access to a broadband connection capable of the same speeds. Further, 64,000 people in Massachusetts don’t have any wired internet providers available where they live, even with 126 internet providers offering services within the state. Another 103,000 Massachusettsans have access to only one internet provider at their place of residence, which potentially limits their choice in internet services and plans.
As for the cost of internet in Massachusetts, affordability data reveals that 43.3% of the state’s residents have access to a low-priced internet plan costing $60 or less per month. This is lower than the nationwide average of 51.5% of American consumers with access to the same.
In terms of internet speed, availability, and pricing, some Massachusetts cities outshine the rest. With the best in the state listed first, the top-five most well-connected cities in Massachusetts are Concord, Northborough, Melrose, Boston, and Springfield.
Learn about how Massachusetts stacks up against other states nationwide here.
Since 2010, thea Massachusetts Broadband Institue (MBI) has been granted $6,162,554 in federal grant funding to further broadband data collection and development throughout the state. The MBI’s “mission is to make affordable high-speed Internet available to all homes, businesses, schools, libraries, medical facilities, government offices, and other public places across the Commonwealth.”
Over $77.5 million in federal grants has also been awarded to various programs working to expand broadband infrastructure within Massachusetts.
The information above is taken from a mix of public and private datasets. More about our data here.