In the past, our surveys have asked what people pay per month for internet access; we last did this in December 2005. The April 2008 survey had different question wording to reflect that some people have internet service bundled with phone or cable service and, if so, most likely have a single bill for several services. Thus, the question wording in the April 2008 survey was:
“To the nearest dollar, about how much do you pay each month for internet access at home? If your internet access is combined with television or other services, I would like to know just the amount you pay for internet service.”
Overall, home broadband users reported that their monthly payment for internet service was $34.50 – 4% less than the figure of $36 per month reported in December 2005. This decline in monthly broadband bills is half the rate (8%) reported over the February 2004 to December 2005 timeframe.
As in 2005, there is a gap in what people pay for cable modem service compared to DSL, although it is narrower today than a few years ago. In December 2005, cable modem users reported monthly bills of $41 for service, while DSL users said they paid $32 per month for service. In May 2008, DSL users reported monthly internet access bills of $31.5 and cable modem users said they paid $37.5 for service, or an average difference of $6.
For dial-up users, the story was different. Their monthly access bill was $19.70 – 9% higher than the figure of $18 that dial-up users reported in December 2005.