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Broadband delays costing US $500bn per year

Needs to lose its 'luxury' status

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The US is missing out on $500 billion per year through broadband delays.

Just connecting half the country's households to high-speed Net access would be worth around £200 billion, according to a report out today from the Brookings Institution.

Benefits would come from increased online home shopping, and e-service replacements for traditional phone and health services.

Meanwhile, more broadband use would lead to increased demand for new or updated computers and Internet-related equipment - around 60 per cent of households in the US have a computer.

This would add around $100 million to business, according to the study conducted by Brookings economist Bob Crandall and engineering consultant Charles Jackson.

These estimates for the potential value of broadband are "based on the assumption that broadband evolves its 'luxury' status into a household necessity over time," the survey states.

Half of all US houses currently have residential Internet connections, while less than eight per cent have broadband. ®

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