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Some 56 million more people signed up for broadband services during 2010, a new study has indicated.

Research conducted by technology analyst Point Topic reveals there were 523 million broadband users around the world at the end of last year.

A growth rate of 12 per cent was seen during 2010, roughly on a par with the previous two years, reports

The highest number of broadband subscriptions were in Europe, where 189 million homes and busineses were paying for a connection in December 2010.

However, continued growth in Asia means the region – which had 185 million broadband subscribers in the final quarter of last year – should soon overtake Europe.

DSL broadband continues to account for the highest proportion of broadband connections, with a 63.36 per cent market share.

However, the popularity of fibre broadband is continuing to increase, with 13.82 per cent of the market now served by a fibre-optic connection, up from 13.31 per cent in June 2010.

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