By the middle of 2017, there were almost 890 million fixed broadband connections worldwide. An estimated 15.8 million fixed broadband connections were added in the second quarter of 2017, the majority of them in China, which is the largest market by some way. The quarterly rate of global growth slowed slightly to 1.8%, although it was up on the 1.3% growth for the same quarter a year previously.

The number of fixed broadband connections grew by almost 10% between the start of 2016 and the middle of 2017.

Fixed broadband connections 2016 Q1 to 2017 Q2. Source: Point Topic.

China is by far the largest fixed broadband market, with over 320 million connections, representing over a third of the total number in the world. The United States is second, with about 105 million. Japan has about 38 million, followed by Germany, France, and the Russian Federation. The United Kingdom ranks seventh, with over 25 million. These 10 countries account for 72% of broadband connections worldwide.

Fixed broadband connections by country, 2017 Q2. Source: Point Topic.

In just 12 months, China added over million 71 fibre to the home broadband connections, which is more than the total number of broadband connections in Japan and Germany combined.

East Asia accounted for around 11.40 million net additions in the second quarter of 2017. Europe added about 2.75 million, while the Americas added 0.66 million.

The number of copper lines globally fell by 7.2 per cent, while fibre-to-the-home connections increased by 34.3 per cent between Q2 2016 and Q2 2017.

Globally, Point Topic notes that from 2015 fibre-to-the-home is used by more broadband subscribers than coaxial cable. With an increasing number of fibre network upgrades to gigabit speeds being announced regularly by operators worldwide, this trend is likely to continue. As the same time, a number of cable providers especially in Canada and the United States are responding with upgraded deployments also capable of gigabit speeds.