Minnesota Intelligent Rural Communities:A Progress Report on BroadbandJack M. Geller, Ph.D.University of Minnesota-Crookston Blandin Foundation Strategy Board August 31, 2010 * Funding supported through Blandin Foundation Grant No. U20010-001 ** Data collected by the Center for Rural Policy & Development, St. Peter, MN
Observations Broadband is now the predominant method by which rural residents connect to the Internet. In 2001 6% of all rural Minnesota households had a broadband connection; but in 2010 only 6% still have a dial-up connection. Broadband access, while not yet ubiquitous in rural Minnesota is overwhelmingly accessible. Competition is limited, but increasing in may areas. Stagnant growth in home computers will create a “ceiling” on broadband growth. The most cited reason why dial-up customers have not yet adopted broadband services is still price.
Observations The socio-economic and demographic characteristics of rural Minnesota are greater barriers to the full adoption of broadband technology than geography or topography. The challenge to full adoption will lie in the development of broadband applications that are specifically relevant and valued among those remaining “laggards.”
For Additional Information Contact Jack M. Geller, Ph.D. University of Minnesota, Crookston 218-281-8248 email@example.com