Renowned technophile and trendy, the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region is nevertheless at the bottom of the national ranking in terms of access to broadband and very high speed. Both for fixed (ADSL, fiber) and mobile (4G), which covers 87% of the regional surface, against 92.1% of the national territory. Even more annoying is the fact that access to the network has become essential, both for individuals, for their administrative procedures and for businesses.
If certain departments like the Rhône play good pupils, others, like the Pays de Savoie, are behind, mainly because of the relief which hinders the deployment of the fiber and disturbs the reception of the waves, as the study shows just released by the National Institute of Statistics ( Insee ).
The Savoie countries lagging behind for fiber
For fixed very high speed, provided by optical fiber, the mountainous relief of the region thus leads to a large disparity in coverage. In the densely populated and relatively flat Rhône, 89.5% of the population is eligible for fiber. Well above the national average (52.9%). With 51.7% of the population able to connect, Ain points to third regional place behind Puy-de-Dôme (58.8%).
Elsewhere, the picture is much less brilliant. With only 32.9% and 33.7% of the population having access to fiber optics, Haute-Savoie and Savoie have a disastrous record, with almost two out of three inhabitants unable to connect. The Pays de Savoie barely do better than Ardèche (28.8%), less well than Cantal (37.9%), Allier (39.6%) or Haute-Loire (40.5%) ).
Figures all the less pleasing as in the Savoyard departments, a significant part of the population still does not have access to fixed broadband: more than one inhabitant in 5 in Haute-Savoie (22.6%), more of one inhabitant in 4 in Savoie (26.3%). Figures above the national average.
Prepare for 5G
The weak deployment of fiber could prove detrimental for the deployment of 5G, which will need relays passing through very high fixed speed, as noted in the note from INSEE. In insufficiently covered departments, such as the Pays de Savoie, a choice will have to be made between very high speed mobile (4G) or fixed (fiber) broadband to make up for the delay and meet ambitious European objectives in terms of network access.
Nothing to worry about when it comes to mobile broadband. If the geographic coverage of certain departments remains incomplete (25% of the territory not covered by 4G in Ardèche, more than 20% in Savoie, 6% in Haute-Savoie), the white areas only concern often mountainous territories and few densely populated.
Thus in Savoy, the 80% of the territory covered by 4G receives almost all (99.8%) of the population. Only the departments of Cantal and Ardèche still have more than 5% of their population (one inhabitant in 20) not receiving 4G. In Ain, 99% of the population receives 4G and Haute-Savoie does even better with 99.9%.