The Fiber Broadband Association’s most recent survey of online consumers revealed that fiber is playing a key role in improving the quality of jobs, education, and health care. Conducted by RVA LLC Market Research and Consulting (RVA) in May 2022, the survey interviewed 3,000 consumers selected at random and looked at the impact of fiber by zeroing in on working age individuals from 25-65 making under $65,000 per year.
“We wanted to make sure that we were focusing the survey on those who would be really impacted and who are most important to be impacted by fiber broadband in our society today,” said Mike Render, Founder and CEO of RVA. “We found 58.6% of the people we surveyed with fiber work from home while only 43% of those without fiber do. About 38% of people with fiber in the select demographic work for a high-tech firm compared to 28.5% of those without fiber.”
Looking at education and health care, fiber provided significant benefits. Out of those with fiber, 32.6% said they had access to good health care, while only 25% of those surveyed without fiber made the same claim. Around 34.5% of respondents with fiber said they had good access to education while only 28% of those without fiber could say the same. Fiber also gave a two percent boost to people operating their own businesses.
Other benefits delivered by fiber included a dramatically lower cost of broadband per megabit over the last decade, while other utilities such as electricity, water, and natural gas have all increased over the same time. Fiber also reduces carbon emissions, with direct and indirect estimates of FTTH CO2 impact resulting in reductions of 50,056 Kilotons annually, the equivalent of taking 10.8 million vehicles off the road.
The gains have contributed to a population shift, with people moving out of cities and to rural areas that have fiber. “There is a desire to move from downtown areas with the strongest increase to small rural communities,” Render said. “People cite affordability and safety as very important factors for this move. They’re trading off their desires for walkable retail and exciting nightlife for nature and green space. But they need high speed internet.”
Listen to the latest Fiber for Breakfast podcast to learn more about fiber’s benefits, including its ability to reduce carbon emissions and generate substantial economic benefits for communities.