Currently ranked 42nd in the USA, Mississippi is among the top ten worst states in the nation when it comes to state broadband access. This is in part due to the relatively low statewide average download speed of 84.5 Mbps and the fact that over 16% percent of the population remains without access to a high-speed wired broadband connection of 25 Mbps or faster. That being said, 39.9% of Mississippians have access to fiber-optic service, which is significantly higher than the national average of 25% of consumers who have access to the same.
The Digital Divide in Mississippi
The digital divide – the gap between Mississippians who have access to affordable, high-speed internet services and those who do not – can be seen in the broadband coverage map, which reveals that some counties enjoy widespread coverage while others have less than 50% coverage. Digital inequality within the state can also be measured by the following data.
At this time, there are 368,000 people in Mississippi that do not have access to a wired internet connection capable of 25 Mbps download speeds. Additionally, while 112 internet providers operate within the state, 258,000 Mississippians don’t have any wired internet providers available where they live, and another 236,000 people only have access to one provider at their place of residence, which presents a hardship in the case they are dissatisfied with their current provider and would like to switch.
Still, affordability data shows that 56.8% of Mississippi’s population has access to a low-priced monthly internet plan (costing $60 or less). This is above the nationwide average of 51.5% of Americans who enjoy access to the same.
Mississippi may not be the best-connected state in the nation. However, there are some well-connected cities within the state including Jackson, Long Beach, Horn Lake, and Madison. The highest-ranking city in Mississippi with the best combination of internet coverage, speed, and affordability is Jackson. Nearly all residents in Jackson have access to wired broadband.
Internet for Rural Areas in Mississippi
Across the digital divide lay the Mississippi cities with the poorest internet accessibility in the state. Delta City, Tippo, Philipp, and Morgan City are the worst connected cities, with Delta City ranking lowest in Mississippi.
Read more on how Mississippi’s connectivity compares to other states nationwide.
To further broadband data collection and development within Mississippi, the federal government has awarded the state $7,011,691 in federal grants since 2010. An additional $102,364,489 in federal grant funding has gone toward the expansion of Mississippi’s broadband infrastructure.
The information above has been derived from a combination of public and private datasets. Find out more about our data here.