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Commencement of 2012 Measuring Broadband America Performance Study

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Released: February 16, 2012


Federal Communications Commission

News Media Information 202 / 418-0500

445 12th St., S.W.


Washington, D.C. 20554

TTY: 1-888-835-5322

DA 12-235

February 16, 2012

FCC Announces Commencement of 2012 Measuring Broadband America
Performance Study of Residential Broadband Service in the United States

On August 2, 2011 the FCC released the first Measuring Broadband America Report, which
presented the results of the first nationwide study of broadband performance to the home.1 The Report was
the culmination of a year-long effort involving the cooperation of Internet Service Providers (ISPs)
representing 86% of all residential wireline broadband consumers in the United States to measure broadband
performance to the homes of a representative sampling of thousands of volunteers. More than 100 million
individual tests were performed on each volunteer’s broadband service. The Report established for the first
time that the majority of residential wireline broadband consumers are receiving performance close to the
level advertised by their providers. It also identified ISPs that fell short of advertised speeds. A few months
after the report was released, the FCC noticed a significant improvement by a major ISP and announced the
results in a blog post. The project’s success was the result of a collaborative effort among the FCC,
SamKnows Ltd., some 9,000 panel volunteers, and 22 other stakeholders that included academic researchers
from MIT and Georgia Tech, technology vendors and consumer groups, and 13 ISPs, including AT&T,
Cablevision, CenturyLink, Charter, Comcast, Cox, Frontier, Mediacom, Insight, Qwest, TimeWarner,
Verizon, and Windstream.
The FCC is continuing its efforts to improve the availability of information describing broadband
performance in the U.S. Performance information is only useful to consumers if it is accurate and up-to-
date. A key part of the FCC’s Consumer Empowerment Agenda will be expanding the Measuring
Broadband project this year, including publishing two reports in 2012, and expanding the study to include
more technologies, extending the study into new regions of the country, and planning to publish more kinds
of data. The first round of testing will begin in March. The FCC will continue its commitment to test and
report broadband information transparently, and in collaboration with key stakeholders.
Interested consumers are again encouraged to volunteer to be a part of this important effort to
provide detailed and accurate measurements of consumer broadband performance on a national level. Once
again, the Measuring Broadband project will develop real data to evaluate ISP broadband performance
claims and provide consumers with the ability to compare ISPs in meaningful ways. Detailed instructions on
participation and a signup page are available at

1 The Report, technical appendix, and all data collected are publicly available at

Questions regarding this Public Notice may be directed to Walter Johnston at (202) 418-0807 or
James Miller at (202) 418-7351.
By the Chief, Office of Engineering and Technology.

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