It may have always felt like we’re being overcharged for Internet access, but now it has been confirmed. A bipartisan study has shown what many Americans have known all along, that we pay way too much for Internet service that is inferior to other countries. In fact, Americans tend to pay about twice as much for comparable Internet speeds to other countries.
The main explanation for the overpriced and substandard service is the borderline monopoly the current providers have. There are only a handful of major Internet service providers that have a stranglehold on nearly every city in the United States. Even comparing cities of similar size and populations, the United States is behind other nations in most Internet metrics. For example, Verizon’s 150 Mbps connection which goes for $130 a month would likely be about $50 in another European country, and Asian countries have even less expensive and faster Internet service. The data showed that the most affordable and fastest connections are available where consumers have three or more providers between which to choose, but the majority of consumers in the United States are limited to one or two choices of Internet provider. Let’s hope this is an issue we can catch up with the rest of the world on.