Cost chief barrier to internet access in Louisiana, survey finds

By: - April 27, 2022 4:19 pm
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Providing greater access to high-speed internet services in rural and lower-income urban areas has been a priority of federal and state officials to support education and economic development. (Canva image)

Louisiana residents say the most common barrier to having broadband internet access at home is the cost of the service, according to a survey. More than half of respondents said they don’t need it because they have smartphones.

The Louisiana Survey from the Reilly Center for Media & Public Affairs at LSU’s Manship School of Mass Communication found 75% of respondents already had broadband internet service in their homes. Another 6% said they subscribe to internet service, but it is a slower dial-up service. About 20% of respondents stated they do not have broadband or dial-up in their homes.

The survey findings are based on online and phone responses from 508 Louisiana residents.

Providing greater access to high-speed internet services in rural and lower-income urban areas has been a priority of federal and state officials to support education and economic development, and the survey’s findings help delineate the extent of the problem.

  • 87% of the Louisiana residents surveyed said they had a smartphone.
  • 18% of respondents do not have high-speed internet access at home but do have a smartphone.
  • 6% do not have access to broadband or a smartphone.

Sixty-four percent of respondents without internet service gave the monthly cost of a home broadband subscription as being too expensive as the reason for no home internet service. The next most common explanation for not having home internet service was that smartphones allowed them access to the internet for all their needs.

  • 54% of residents without broadband internet service in their homes would like to have the service, while 42% remain uninterested.
  • 42% of respondents without broadband service said that broadband internet was not available in their area.

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