WSJ has a special report on broadband:
After years of hype and false starts, we can finally declare it: The Age of Broadband is here. It may have arrived with little of the fanfare first envisioned at the height of the tech investing bubble. But it has something more important than buzz. It has critical mass.
That’s a lot of people, and it’s already having a huge effect on what we see and do online. Video and music increasingly are becoming the norm, and consumers are quickly warming to high-speed e-commerce. In fact, those who move to high-speed pipes are three times as likely to download videos as those beholden to the slowpoke speeds of dial-up modems, according to a survey by the Pew Internet and American Life Project, a Washington nonprofit organization that studies the impact of the Internet.
The minutiae of daily life are changing, too, says Jed Kolko, an analyst at Forrester Research Inc., a research firm in Cambridge, Mass. A world where broadband dominates “is a world where computers and the Internet are involved in more and more of our mundane transactions,” says Mr. Kolko. “Things like checking flight status, movie times, bank balances.”
Perhaps broadband’s greatest economic effect will be the hardest to measure: that as a catalyst for all kinds of offline behavior. People who have high-speed connections, for instance, are more likely to buy new digital cameras, using their speedy connections to send digital photos to friends and family. They’re also more likely to buy home-networking equipment, such as Wi-Fi cards, to share the bandwidth among multiple PCs.
Looks like the combination of wireless and broadband is all set to bring in the next phase in usage of the Internet.