The Office of Broadband Development has released the county broadband maps and numbers; the data was collected by October 2021. For archival reasons, I’ll do three different posting looking at:
- 2021 MN County Ranking at speeds of 25/3
- 2021 MN County Ranking at speeds of 100/20
- 2021 MN County Ranking at speeds of Gigs
Turns out the gig ranking is where all of the excitement is in terms of change in ranking. I’ll paste the numbers below but they’re available in a spreadsheet too. It’s worth nothing that the top county shows 99.59 percent of households have access to Gig access; the bottom 10 counties have less than 1 percent coverage.
Top Ten Gig Counties
Worth noting that all of these are rural counties! Big congrats to the new counties on this short list, especially to Pennington, Lincoln and Olmsted.
I hear policy makers talking about ways to use public funding to build networks only required to get to speeds of 25/3 and I think about the deepening divide between those areas and these counties. These counties, especially given rural standing, make the case that we can aim higher.
Bottom Ten Counties
|County||Percent||ranking||Last year Ranking|
There’s not much change in the bottom list. Harder to go lower than 1 percent. But it’s interesting to look at the counties on the list. Ramsey County ranks third for access to 100/20 and lands 86 for Gig access. Anoka is number 11 with access to 25/3 and number 79 here.
Looking at these reports for several years, I’ve seen the leap-frogging that can happen when a community is focused on (or limited or funded) to a specific speed. Usually I’ve seen it with access to 25/3. A community aims and succeeds and they are top of the game for a limited time. More recently we’ve seen that those “successful” communities become ineligible for funding for improvement. The thirst for broadband is ever increasing with new applications and post pandemic reliance on remote access. The once successful communities get left behind like the Little League baseball player who stops practicing. I think the top of the Gig chart are the communities that are ready.
|Lac qui Parle||79.23||12|
|Lake of the Woods||22.81||49|
Source: Connected Nation, Oct. 2021.