The U.S. Census released the first data from its 2018 American Community Survey this morning. Today’s ACS One Year Estimates include community-wide survey data from “Census places” with more than 65,000 residents. That includes updated information about the home Internet connections of residents of Cleveland and other big and medium-size cities.
Unfortunately, not much has changed since the 2017 One Year Estimates published a year ago.
According to the ACS data released today:
- In 2018, more than 47,000 Cleveland households (27.4%) still lacked home broadband Internet subscriptions “of any type” including mobile data plans. That’s slightly better than the 30% reported for 2017, but still the fourth worst percentage among the eighty U.S. cities that have 100,000 households or more. Only Miami, Detroit and Memphis reported higher (worse) percentages.
- In 2018, more than 76,000 Cleveland households (44.2%) still didn’t have cable, DSL or fiber Internet subscriptions. That was also the fourth worst wireline connection rate among 100,000-household cities.
- About 24,000 Cleveland households (14.1%) were “smartphone-dependent”, meaning the ACS found they had only a mobile data plan but no other home broadband subscription. (There’s a good chance many of these were connected to Lifeline phone accounts, which now typically include one gibabit of Internet data per month or less.)
As CYC has pointed out repeatedly, Cleveland residents who don’t have home Internet access are mostly lower-income. Here are the numbers and percentages of Cleveland households that lacked broadband subscriptions of any kind in 2018, by household income: