Fiber is the Dominant Broadband Access Technology in Half of All OECD Countries

Among these countries, 15 have a share of fiber subscriptions of over 50 percent.

  • Broadband Adoption

According to the latest data, high-speed fiber is now the primary fixed broadband technology in 19 out of 38 OECD countries.

The latest update of the OECD Broadband Portal shows a 12.3 percent rise in fiber broadband subscriptions across OECD countries between June 2021 and June 2022, a slightly slower growth rate than the previous 12 months. The need to bolster remote working capacity has remained even as many workers physically return all the office in 2022, driving demand for fiber connections that provide fast upload and download speeds. Fiber now accounts for 36 percent of fixed broadband subscriptions in the 38 OECD member countries, up from 22 percent five years ago.

Korea, Japan and Spain have the highest fiber penetration rates in the OECD at 87 percent, 84 percent and 81 percent, respectively, among the seven countries with a fiber share of total fixed broadband subscriptions of 70 percent or above. The highest fiber growth rates in Latin America were in Costa Rica, Chile and Colombia (51 percent, 35 percent and 32 percent, respectively). At the same time, in Europe they were Belgium, the United Kingdom and Ireland (87 percent, 47 percent and 40 percent, respectively).

The latest update of the Broadband Portal features 5G subscriptions for the first time, with 14 OECD countries now able to show 5G data as part of their overall mobile broadband data. Of all 38 OECD countries, 5G services are available in 36, with 5G subscriptions representing 17 percent of mobile broadband subscriptions (in countries with available data). Denmark (41 percent, 3.5 million subscriptions), Korea (28.5 percent, 24.6m) and Japan (21 percent, 51.5m) have seen the highest take-up. Mobile broadband continued to grow overall, with a 6 percent increase in subscriptions in the year to June 2022.

Cable grew by a more modest 2 percent in the year to June 2022 and is now declining in 18 countries. It remains the leading fixed broadband technology in eight OECD countries. It is dominant in North and South America, with subscriptions in the United States, Colombia and Costa Rica accounting for 63 percent, 59 percent and 56 percent of the total, respectively (although in Chile fiber has overtaken cable). In Europe, cable remains popular in Belgium, Hungary and the Netherlands, with 53 percent, 45 percent and 44 percent, respectively.

DSL subscriptions fell by 8.5 percent over the same period, with several OECD countries showing sharp declines. While DSL remains the main broadband technology in several countries, some saw sharp declines in subscriptions, notably Norway (-64 percent), Chile (-49 percent) and Sweden (-41 percent). 

Overall, fixed broadband subscriptions in OECD countries totaled 476 million in June 2022, up from 463 million a year earlier, with an average of 34.7 subscriptions per 100 inhabitants. Mobile broadband subscriptions totaled 1.76 billion in June 2022, up from 1.66 billion a year earlier, with an average of 128 subscriptions per 100 inhabitants.   

Download broadband data, charts, and penetration maps by country at





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