The aim of this chapter is to outline various factors reported in the 49 chapters of this handbook of research. The aim is also to organize identified factors in a meaningful manner in order to propose a framework of broadband adoption and diffusion. This chapter illustrates the fact that research on the adoption, diffusion, usage, and impact of broadband is clearly a global issue which requires a multidisciplinary approach. The proposed framework includes three levels of factors—macro factors, individual micro factors, and SME-level micro factors. These three levels of factors are relevant at different levels of development, deployment, and diffusion of broadband which persist in various developed and developing countries. The chapter concludes by suggesting that the proposed framework is based on a comprehensive set of factors observed in various countries, and future studies may use this framework to identify gaps and then bridge those gaps by conducting new studies.
Key Terms in this Chapter
Broadband: Always-on access, at work, at home, or on the move, provided by a range of fixed-line, wireless, and satellite technologies to progressively higher bandwidths capable of supporting genuinely new and innovative interactive content, applications, and services, and the delivery of enhanced public services (BSG Report, 2001).
IPTV: Digital television content delivered through IP-based networks.
Diffusion: The process by which an innovation is communicated through certain channels over time among the members of a social system (Rogers, 1995).
VOIP: Refers to voice over Internet protocol. This is the family of technologies that allow IP networks to be used for voice applications, such as telephony, voice instant messaging, teleconferencing, and so forth.
Consumers-Users: Those who pay for services and goods, while ‘users’ are individuals who are affected by or who affect the products or services. In other words, users are those who use the products and services but do not pay for them (Rice, 1997). For example, a child can be categorized as a user since he or she uses broadband for online gaming and to undertake homework; however, the child does not pay for the service. Contrastingly, the parent can be identified as a consumer as well as a user since he or she pays and uses the service (Rice, 1997).