ECONOMY

Crisis can?t hold back broadband Internet growth

Greece had the highest growth rate of broadband Internet penetration among European Union members in 2010, according to the Observatory for the Greek Information Society.

In its 12th report on broadband penetration in the country, the Observatory suggests that 19.9 percent, or about one in every five people, had acquired fast Internet services as there were 2.25 million active connections at the end of December.

This does not include broadband connections for cell phones, with about one in every four citizens possessing a third-generation mobile telephone or a broadband connection via a 3G card.

This growth in broadband penetration has allowed Greece to cut the distance separating it from its EU peers, although it is still considerably below the bloc?s average that in June 2010 had stood at 25.6 percent.

Notably, the Observatory suggests that the financial crisis has not had an impact on demand for broadband Internet thanks to the aggressive promotion policies of service suppliers and consumers? determination to enter the digital era. This is why the Observatory expects penetration to climb to 21.3 percent at the end of June.