High-speed broadband access sparse in rural Maryland counties

High-speed broadband access sparse in rural Maryland counties

By godog with Flickr Creative Commons

By Julia Lee

Capital News Service 

Rural areas in less populated Maryland counties have significantly less access to high speed internet than people in more populated parts of the state, preventing them from fully participating in an increasingly connected world.

For example, two-thirds of people in Somerset County on the Eastern Shore lack access to a connection with download speeds greater than 25 megabytes per second, compared with less than 1% in Howard County, according to FCC data.

In sparsely populated counties — like Dorchester on the Eastern Shore — and densely populated counties — like Montgomery County — people who live in rural parts of a county have less access to high speed internet than people in more urbanized parts.

But only 6% of rural Montgomery county residents lack high speed access — compared with 41% of rural Dorchester county residents.

The takeaway: In counties that are more urban than rural, the vast majority of people in the county’s rural areas have good access to high speed internet.

In counties that are more rural than urban — like most of the Eastern Shore and Western Maryland — people in rural parts of the county are much more likely to get left behind. Source: Federal Communications Commission.

About The Author

Capital News Service


Capital News Service is a student-powered news organization run by the University of Maryland Philip Merrill College of Journalism. For 26 years, we have provided deeply reported, award-winning coverage of issues of import to Marylanders. With bureaus in College Park, Annapolis and Washington run by professional journalists with decades of experience, we deliver news in multiple formats via partner news organizations, a destination Web site, a nightly on-air television newscast and affiliated social media channels (including Twitter and Facebook). We provide breaking news coverage, in-depth investigative and enterprise journalism, and serve as a laboratory for students to test and develop innovative new methods of reporting and telling stories. By providing a true newsroom experience to our students, we send them into the job market with real-world skills and the ability to shape the future of journalism. Only Merrill’s most motivated students are accepted into the Capital News Service program, and they go on to land internships and jobs at the nation’s finest news organizations: The New York Times, the Washington Post, CNN, the Associated Press, Politico, the Chicago Tribune, the Los Angeles Times, ProPublica, National Geographic, NBC News, The Dallas Morning News, the Washington City Paper, Washingtonian magazine, Money magazine, the Wall Street Journal and more.

1 Comment

  1. John Woodfield

    What was the last update of this map? It looks like one from several years ago that is grossly inaccurate. The deadline for Form 477 filing was September 1 – you should pull your data from that most recent map instead of posting misinformation.

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