Feeds

US VoIP subscribers 21 million strong

Skype not included

Next gen security for virtualised datacentres

The US Federal Communications Commission reports that there are 21 million VoIP subscriptions stateside, and that the vast majority of them are residential customers. But it didn't count Skype subscribers.

These figures were announced by the FCC to accompany the release of its highly detailed 31-page report, "Local Telephone Competition". The report, however, isn't exactly what you might call "fresh" — although it was released just last Friday, its data set ends on December 31, 2008.

Don't expect 2010 numbers to be higher than end-of-2008 numbers, however. In a report published earlier this year, analysts at the Dell'Oro group said the the VoIP market had suffered greatly in recent years due to the market meltdown, and was only beginning to recover — or even stabilize — in 2010.

The FCC's report come with one enormous caveat that it buries in a footnote: the stats don't include Skype subscribers, but only phone-to-phone communications that enable customers "to receive calls that originate on the public switched telephone network and to terminate calls to the public switched telephone network." This omission doesn't render the numbers meaningless — it just means that there's a lot more VoIPing going on than the FCC reports.

According to the FCC, at the end of 2008, there were a total of 162 million wireline telephone connections in the US. Among those, 141 million were what the FCC calls "traditional switched access lines". The remainder were VoIP.

Of the VoIP lines, over 19 million were residential subscriptions, and a mere 2 million were in businesses. Switched-access phone service in residential settings had a four-to-one advantage over VoIP. In business, that advantage was over 30 to one.

VoIP and wireline stats for business and residential subscribers

Skypeless VoIP is making inroads into far more homes than businesses — at least at the end of 2008

Of all VoIP subscribers, 81 per cent received their service bundled with internet access, and 92 per cent of all VoIPers were connected over a cable modem.

The vast majority of VoIP service is provided by relative newcomers. The old guard — what the FCC refers to as ILECs (incumbent local exchange carriers), meaning telephone companies that were already in existence when AT&T was broken up into the "Baby Bells" in 1984 — accounted for just over 500,000 VoIP lines at the the end of 2008, while non-ILEC services accounted for over 20 million. ®

Bootnote

Did the FCC really require a full year and a half to collect and analyze telephone-usage data? Perhaps the statisticians who prepared the report liken it to fine wine or a zesty Pecorino Romano: aged to perfection.

Next gen security for virtualised datacentres

More from The Register

next story
Don't call it throttling: Ericsson 'priority' tech gives users their own slice of spectrum
Actually it's a nifty trick - at least you'll pay for what you get
UK fuzz want PINCODES on ALL mobile phones
Met Police calls for mandatory passwords on all new mobes
Three floats Jolla in Hong Kong: Says Sailfish is '3rd option'
Network throws hat into ring with Linux-powered handsets
Netflix swallows yet another bitter pill, inks peering deal with TWC
Net neutrality crusader once again pays up for priority access
Fifteen zero days found in hacker router comp romp
Four routers rooted in SOHOpelessly Broken challenge
EE: STILL Blighty's best mobe network, says 'Frappucino' Moore
Fresh round of network stats fisticuffs possibly on the cards here
New Sprint CEO says he will lower axe on staff – but prices come first
'Very disruptive' new rates to be revealed next week
US TV stations bowl sueball directly at FCC's spectrum mega-sale
Broadcasters upset about coverage and cost as they shift up and down the dials
Tech city types developing 'Google Glass for the blind' app
An app and service where other people 'see' for you
Canadian ISP Shaw falls over with 'routing' sickness
How sure are you of cloud computing now?
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 10 endpoint backup mistakes
Avoid the ten endpoint backup mistakes to ensure that your critical corporate data is protected and end user productivity is improved.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Rethinking backup and recovery in the modern data center
Combining intelligence, operational analytics, and automation to enable efficient, data-driven IT organizations using the HP ABR approach.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.