When it comes to internet connectivity, those living in Texas are rather fortunate as they have access to one of the top broadband infrastructures in the country. Coming in as the 8th most connected on a list of all 50 states, Texas has a state-wide average download speed of 63.3 Mbps. Internet connection is spread fairly evenly across the entire state. However, if you live in a metropolitan area, you have a solid advantage over people living in rural areas who may not have access to the same level of internet.
The Digital Divide in Texas
The “digital divide” is a term used to describe any uneven distribution in the access to communication technologies over a certain area. In this case, internet access in the state of Texas. When we determined the digital divide for Texas, we took into account two important factors, affordability and public broadband availability.
In regards to affordability, Texas scores well. Our latest affordability data shows that 67.3% of Texas’ population has access to a standalone broadband internet plan under $60 per month.
When it comes to broadband availability, 91% of Texas residents have access to a 25 Mbps wired internet connection. While this is a huge percentage, 2.1 million people still don’t have access to a wired connection capable of the same speed. On top of that, there are 2.7 million people that have access to only one wired provider, and still another 1.2 million people without access to a wired connection at all, the majority of which being in rural areas.
Of the smaller towns in Texas, Colleyville is the best-connected. 100% of Colleyvilles’s population has access to at least three internet service providers as well as affordable plans starting under $60/mo.
When it comes to larger Texas cities, Garland ranks the highest on the list. In fact, Garland ranks number 7 of all major cities in the U.S. This large metropolitan area boasts the same excellent, 100% coverage as its smaller sister town on Colleyville.
On the other hand, the worst connected town in Texas is Silver. There are no wired connection options for this small town. Residents must resort to satellite internet service if they want download speeds over 4 Mbps.
The Texas government has given its support in improving the broadband infrastructure by awarding numerous federal grants. In 2010 the Connected Nation Texas program was implemented in order to create “better economic & life opportunities by expanding access, adoption, & use of broadband.”
Overall their efforts have proven successful, as the program was awarded $8,026,000 in federal grants towards Texas’s Broadband Initiative.
In addition, the Texas Government awarded a total of $67,698,503, (1.9% of all federal infrastructure grants) to broadband infrastructure projects within the state.
These government initiatives have helped boost the percentage of Texas Residents with access to a wired connection of at least 10mbps from 87.9% to 94.8%, since 2011.
The information above is taken from a mix of public and private datasets. More about our data here.