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The Deregulation of Internet Access Through DSL: An AARP Survey of Texans

In Texas, 68 percent of those age 18+ have Internet access at home; while 65 percent of the state's Internet users do so through a dial-up service, more than a third have high-speed Internet access through a cable modem (19%) or a Digital Subscriber Line or DSL (15%). More than half of those with high-speed Internet access rate their service as very fast (cable modem 56%, DSL 50%) compared to those with dial-up service (8%). More high-speed users are very satisfied with their Internet access through a DSL (74%) and a cable modem (70%) than those using a dial-up connection (42%).

Texans using DSL or cable modem service for their high-speed Internet access pay approximately twice the monthly amount as those using a dial-up service; however, of those who do not currently have high-speed Internet, 20 percent would be willing to pay at least $30, and 29 percent from $20 to $29 per month for it.

Texans are divided in their opinions about the proposed deregulation of DSL service in the state. Although 46 percent support this deregulation, 27 percent are opposed and 25 percent are unsure. However, most supporters of DSL deregulation would shift to opposing if it resulted in less reliable service (68%); higher monthly DSL rates (64%); or a limited choice of Internet service providers (61%).

Between January 15 and 22, 2003, Woelfel Research, Inc. conducted a telephone survey of 801 randomly selected age 18+ Texans. Joanne Binette of AARP Knowledge Management analyzed the data and wrote the report; she may be contacted for more information at jbinette@aarp.org or 202/434-6303. (23 pages)

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