Source » Rank

The Rank tool allows you to compare broadband availability in different areas. It generates a national list of states, counties, Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSA), Congressional Districts, census designated places or Universal Service Fund (USF) study areas by broadband speed, technology, number of broadband providers or demographic information. The tool also generates ranked lists within a state, including by county, census designated place, Congressional District, state legislative district, MSA and USF study area.

We generated this list by overlapping every combination of broadband provider, technology employed, and advertised speed with every combination of state, county, metropolitan statistical areas, congressional districts, census designated places, and USF study areas.

For every unique combination, we tabulated the speed, technologies employed, number of providers and demographic data available and allow you to create ranked lists based on these combinations. The default sorting happens on the percent of the population meeting the criteria you select. You can change this to percent housing units with the manage metrics button. The metrics have the following options available for you to select;


Broadband Technology

Service Providers


Margin of Error

There is a margin of error associated with the percent availability for wireless technologies and speeds. To determine wireless availability, we overlay the wireless footprints with the census block layer. Essentially, we determine which census blocks fall within each provider's footprint. We then sum the population for each census block within the footprint to determine the availability. If a wireless footprint covers an entire census block, we assume the entire census block's population has availability. If a wireless footprint partially covers a census block, we assume that half the population in that census block has availability, with a margin of error of plus or minus half the population (since we do not know geographically where in the census block the population resides). For example, if a wireless footprint covers 30% of a census block with a population of 50 people, we assume 25 people have availability. +/- 25 people.