While the vast majority of European businesses use broadband, only 44 % of companies and 41 % of private homes subscribed to fast broadband in 2018.
Nevertheless, there has been a significant improvement in fast broadband penetration, which increased by more than 20 percentage points (from 23 % to 44 %) for all enterprises in the last 4 years.
The take-up rate of fast broadband varies greatly between companies of different sizes. While 75 % of large companies benefit from broadband speeds of at least 30 Mbps, only 40 % of small enterprises do so.
While 61 % of subscriptions are still xDSL, this technology is steadily losing market share.
Cable is second with 19 % of the market. Fibre to the home/building (FTTH/B), as the fastest growing technology, has already acquired a 16 % market share.
Although DSL is still the most widely used fixed broadband technology, its market share declined from 80 % in 2008 to 61 % in 2018 – almost 20 percentage points in 10 years. Its main challenger — cable — increased its share slightly (15 % versus 19 %) during the same period.
However, the most spectacular growth was achieved by FTTH/B, which has acquired 16 % of the market in just 7 years.
Nevertheless, DSL is still dominant, and its market share could be maintained for some years thanks to increasing VDSL coverage.
The market share of xDSL varies from 11 % to 100 % and is generally lower in eastern Europe,
where FTTH/B is more widely used. Cable is present in all but two Member States.
xDSL is particularly important in Greece and Italy, and has the lowest market share in Bulgaria, Lithuania and Romania.
Looking at alternative technologies, cable is the main rival to DSL in the majority of Member States. Cable has a very high market share in Belgium, Hungary, Malta and the Netherlands.
FTTH and FTTB together represent 16 % of EU broadband subscriptions. FTTH/B is the most widely used technology in Lithuania, Latvia, Romania, Bulgaria, Portugal, Estonia and Sweden.
In these technologies, Europe continues to lag behind global leaders such as South Korea and Japan.
Prices of fast broadband access tend to decrease over time but vary widely between Member States
Broadband retail prices (minimum prices, based on Purchasing Power Parity/PPP) vary between EUR 10 and EUR 38 for a standalone offers with a minimum download speed of 12 Mbps. The minimum prices were the lowest in Bulgaria (EUR 10), Hungary (EUR 11) and Romania (EUR 13), and the highest in Ireland (EUR 38), Spain (EUR 33), Slovenia (EUR 31) and Cyprus (EUR 30).
As for offers of at least 100 Mbps, the EU average is EUR 35 with a substantial decrease from 2014, where the average was EUR 60.