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Home > Blog > Wealth Brings .... (not Technology)
Out of Our Minds
Wednesday, April 12, 2006 11:14 AM
Wealth Brings .... (not Technology)
Kevin Salwen on Technology

New data from an international group brings us this fairly remarkable bit of info: The U.S. has fallen to 12th among industrialized nations in broadband connections, with 16.8% of its inhabitants having such connections. Iceland is the category's new leader, overtaking the top spot from tech-happy South Korea.  Northern Europe filled seven of the top ten results.

The Wall Street Journal (which, sorry to say, put the story behind its subscription-only firewall) says high speed connections mean more to a nation's economy than faster downloads and better quality streaming video: "The quality of communication networks is a major determinant of productivity growth, allowing products and services to be made more efficiently and opening up new markets." So, Mediapost argues, while the quality of Internet products coming out in the U.S. is quite high--the world's biggest and most successful Internet firms are U.S.-based--the divide between the tech haves and have-nots is greater than in other countries, and getting bigger.

Four years ago, the U.S. placed 4th on the list. The big difference seems to be government involvement, as many of the European and Asian countries are building broadband insfrastructure, while in America it's laissez-faire.  Should the U.S. government be doing more to help the have-nots?





1 comment

Suzanne - 4/17/2006 3:02:01 PM
I travel internationally quite extensively for work adn can attest to this form first hand experience. I ahve also visited many areas of the country where companies are operatign adn many of them have inadequate braodband connectivity, their industrial park developers saying it is too costly for them to upgrade. Only in areas where government, usually State, has intervened as in Research Triangle in North Carolina is there eve adequate connectivity, much less advanced. Lately I have been traveling in Asia.. Except for some rural and remote locals, I have been very impressed by high speed internet access her and it puts the US to shame How is it we can afford billions in Iraq, are now seeming to contemplate further military action in Iran, but cannot spend a fraction of that keeping our business competitive?

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