Measuring Broadband America

The Measuring Broadband America (MBA) program is an ongoing nationwide performance study of broadband service in the United States that developed out of a recommendation by the National Broadband Plan to improve the availability of information for consumers about their broadband service. This program is built on principles of openness and transparency. The FCC has made available to stakeholders and the general public the open source software used on both its fixed and mobile applications, the data collected, and detailed information regarding the FCC's technical methodology for analyzing the collected data.

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Measuring Fixed Broadband

Reports offer results of rigorous broadband performance testing for 13 of the largest wireline broadband providers that serve well over 80 percent of the U.S. consumer market. Tests conducted used automated, direct measurements of service delivered to the homes of thousands of volunteers across the United States. The Measuring Fixed Broadband studies began in 2011 with the release of annual reports based on data typically collected during a single month with few large-scale traffic events, such as major holidays, sports events or other elections. The data analyzed in the Reports thus reflect stable network conditions that provide the most accurate view of a provider’s performance under controlled conditions. The FCC works in collaboration with SamKnows, an international statistics and analytics firm supporting similar projects in other countries around the world. The Measuring Broadband America program incorporates the latest engineering best practices from these diverse stakeholders to collect and report the most accurate data for consumer broadband performance in the Unites States. Learn More. See most recent report.


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Measuring Mobile Broadband

The FCC Speed Test app uses smartphone-based technology to collect anonymized broadband performance data from volunteers participating in the collaborative, crowdsourcing initiative. Data is collected to help inform consumers, industry and policymakers with the goal of improving mobile broadband performance nationwide. Users can also use the app to test their own mobile broadband service on demand. Learn More.

MBA Assisted Research Studies

Measuring Broadband America (MBA) Assisted Research studies are initiated when there is researcher interest in using the MBA measurements infrastructure as a resource on which to conduct experiments or collect data different from the standard MBA tests and datasets.

Projects considered for this type of effort involve research on technology topics pertinent to the Broadband Collaborative and the FCC.

The activity entailed may take the form of:

  1. Making the MBA infrastructure and FCC staff assistance available to the research team for a targeted duration, in order to implement specific research experiments (which differ from the tests routinely in use in the MBA program’s regular reporting schedule) or,
  2. Collecting and providing more detailed data than is usually done, from routinely run MBA tests, for a limited duration.

Before a specific project is commenced, a few steps are followed:

  1. The research team will develop a project proposal describing its intended use of the MBA infrastructure, for review with the FCC.
  2. The Researcher Code of Conduct developed for this purpose is shared with the research team for signing.
  3. The technical feasibility of supporting the project on the MBA infrastructure is assessed jointly by the research team and the FCC, on a preliminary basis.
  4. The proposed research is presented to the Collaborative as an initial introduction to the project.
  5. Scheduling of research experiments is done in accordance with available resources and existing commitments.

Further detail on the process associated with this type of activity is contained in the associated Researcher Code of Conduct.

Relevant data and other information, once available, will be linked to this site.

The premises and conclusions of such studies are solely those of the research team, (ie not necessarily endorsed by the FCC). However, besides benefiting researchers, if conducted successfully, projects in this category are likely to provide valuable insights to the FCC, as well as the Broadband Collaborative and assist in understanding advanced technical issues in network measurements and architectures. Learn More

Open Methodology

The Measuring Broadband America program is built on principles of openness and transparency. The FCC makes available to stakeholders and the general public the software source code used in its fixed and mobile applications, the data collected, and detailed information regarding the FCC's technical methodology for analyzing the collected data. Learn More

Recent News and Reports


Wednesday, December 30, 2015