As big wireless providers work to deliver new 5G networks, some are concerned they will also cause a growth in the gap between the digital haves and have nots across the country.
Currently, 18.7 percent of Missourians lack access to wired broadband services, according to BroadbandNow, which keeps a database of broadband information.
The Federal Communications Commission, or FCC, defines broadband as any connection with a download speed of at least 25 megabits per second and upload speed of at least 3 megabits per second. For the sake of comparison, the FCC broadband guide shows a minimum download speed of 1 Mbps to browse the internet and send emails, and minimum of 10 Mbps to download files.
In Missouri, the average download speed is 36.4 Mbps, exceeding the standard for broadband. Yet Missouri ranks only 42nd based for broadband coverage in the state, according to BroadbandNow.