A new national broadband map (NBM) released by the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) shows that, while most Americans have access to high-speed web services, as many as 10% of Americans lack access to broadband services of 4 Mbps that is viewed as the minimum speed for supporting e-mail, video streaming, and other basic Internet activities. Released to the public last Thursday, the NBM enables users to enter a street address to determine what wireline and wireless carriers offer broadband service in any given area and the advertised (as opposed to actual) speeds of those services. Users can also explore a larger map that depicts the extent of broadband availability nationwide and the types of broadband service offered. Compiled from more than 125 million searchable records provided by 1,600 broadband companies, the map shows that at least 85% of the U.S. population has access to broadband Internet speeds of at least 10 Mbps and that speeds of between 25 Mbps and 50 Mbps are available to half of the population. While pointing out the “countless ways” in which NBM website data can be analyzed, NTIA Director Larry Strickling acknowledged that “a digital divide continues to exist” as evidenced by NBM statistics showing that a tenth of the U.S. population living mainly in rural areas still lacks access to broadband. Map records also show that broadband services used by 95% of U.S. libraries and by two-thirds of U.S. schools do not reach speeds of 25 Mbps. Even in areas where broadband is available, nearly 32% of households do not subscribe to broadband and nearly 3% of Americans continue to rely on dial-up connections that provide speeds no faster than 1 Mbps. As FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski praised the NBM’s release as “an important step to advance our broadband agenda,” an FCC spokesman said, “it’s critical that we undertake reforms to ensure that we provide Americans across the nation with the real opportunity to access broadband.”