Large ISPs Continue to Stagnate 3Q 2022

For the second quarter in a row, the biggest landline ISPs in the country are largely sitting still in terms of total broadband customers. The largest cable and telephone companies collectively lost 97,000 customers. But Lumen had a significant loss, and without counting Lumen, the other large landline ISPs collectively gained only 23,000 customers for the quarter.

While the traditional landline ISPs are stagnating, the fixed wireless access products (FWA) from T-Mobile and Verizon are still seeing big growth, having added 920,000 new customers in the third quarter, a quarterly growth rate of over 40%. The wireless home broadband is marketed as having download speeds over 100 Mbps.

The following statistics have been compiled by the Leichtman Research Group, which tracks the broadband performance of the largest ISPs in the country. The numbers for the third quarter of 2022:

 2Q 2022 2Q Change % Change  
Comcast 32,177,000 14,000 0.0%  
Charter 30,328,000 75,000 0.2%  
AT&T 15,452,000 (57,000) -0.4%  
Verizon 7,447,000 35,000 0.5%  
Cox 5,560,000 0 0.0%  
Lumen 4,256,000 (121,000) -2.8%  
Altice 4,290,600 (43,000) -1.0%  
Frontier 2,831,000 4,000 0.1%  
T-Mobile FWA 2,122,000 578,000 37.4%  
Mediacom 1,468,000 0 0.0%  
Windstream 1,175,000 (3,500) -0.3%  
Verizon FWA 1,063,000 342,000 47.4%  
Cable ONE 1,062,000 3,000 0.3%  
Breezeline 707,954 (9,965) -1.4%  
TDS 506,500 5,700 1.1%  
Consolidated 381,912 699 0.2%  
   Total 110,827,966 822,934 0.7%  
Total Cable 75,593,554 39,035 0.1%  
Total Telco 32,049,412 (136,101) -0.4%  
Total FWA 3,185,000 920,000 40.6%  

There is a lot to unpack in these numbers:

  • The underlying story for the big telcos is that they continue to add customers on fiber. For the quarter, the telcos lost 685,000 DSL customers but added 550,000 fiber customers. While many of the customers in those counts were converted from DSL to fiber, the fiber growth bodes well for the future of the telcos.
  • Verizon FWA grew to have more broadband customers than Cable One and Breezeline during the quarter, jumping up to become the twelfth largest ISP.
  • The biggest loser on the list is Lumen, having lost 2.8% of broadband customers during the quarter. In next quarter’s numbers, Lumen will have split off the twenty easternmost states to Brightspeed. Breezeline (Formerly Atlantic Broadband) was the biggest percentage loser among cable companies, having lost 1.4% of broadband customers during the quarter.
  • TDS continues to be the fastest-growing landline ISP, having grown by 1.1% for the quarter. Next is Verizon FiOS, having grown by 0.5% for the quarter.

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