Whether or not you think that AT&T is bluffing on halting or slowing its capital investment, the reason that they are investing in residential services is that it is not regulated and they are finally facing some competition. Implementing Title II regulation will limit their return-on-investment and drive up their costs so naturally they will start investing in areas where they can make more money just as they have done since divestiture. Look at the amount of money that they invest in business and wireless services that are not subject to regulation.
People are naive to think that introducing regulation will make service better and lower prices. Only competition will do that. Regulation will bring you consistent price increases each year and a lower quality of service with little to no innovation. Look at any of the utilities that your city or county provide. What new and exciting services has your water or trash company offered lately? Have you seen your price go down? The same goes with the electric utility. The only innovations that have creeped into their services are to lower the cost of providing electricity so they can achieve higher profits.
Once again I caution, “Be careful for what you wish. You just may get it.”
Logo of the United States Federal Communications Commission, used on their website and some publications since the early 2000s. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Leasing fiber to service providers is the right idea, but most cities that have fiber in the ground have it in limited areas. The big cost of building broadband networks that tends to be overlooked is running the fiber down every residential street to every home. I know cities with about 100,000 residents that have as much fiber as San Francisco, and they are a long way off from offering it to anyone.
All of the supposed throngs of people chanting for government control of the Internet don’t remember the Bell System days when they only had one dial telephone in the house. When you let the government control and regulate and industry, you get the lowest common denominator of service. We are seeing that with the ACA.
Posted By Rachel Swan on Wed, Nov 12, 2014 at 7:09 AM
President Obama created a seismic wave in the blogosphere after taking a bullish stance on net neutrality Monday, urging the FCC to adopt a strict set of rules for cable service providers. Companies shouldn’t be allowed to wantonly block off websites, Obama argued, and they shouldn’t be allowed to charge fees for priority access (what’s known in the business as “an Internet fast lane”). Continue reading
TCS Communications operator Alberto Lucio uses an underground drilling machine to install lines for Longmont’s NextLight fiber optic broadband network on Monday in the Southmoor Park neighborhood. (Matthew Jonas / Longmont Times-Call)
As Longmont Power and Communications opened up NextLight municipal Internet to roughly 500 homes in Southmoor Park for the first time Monday, the phone wouldn’t stop ringing.
LPC customer service reps worked from 7 a.m. and through lunch answering questions from would-be first customers about billing and installation. Some administrative assistants also pitched in to handle the call volume. Continue reading
This is an all too familiar tale of a city embarking on a broadband venture where only the consultants make money (Sorry friends). Residents of the city want to see competition but turn to the government. When that fails they start a grassroots effort. Unfortunately any grassroots campaign will not be enough to even fund a neighborhood. I wish this coalition the best of luck but they need to use their funds to get someone that can try a novel approach to engage a public/private partnership to drive broadband competition.
Baltimore was among dozens of disappointed cities when Google announced it had picked Kansas City, Mo., for a high-speed fiber-optic data network in 2011, but officials vowed to continue fighting for fiber nonetheless.
Nearly four years later, some are disappointed by the lack of progress— and want to show that some of the fervor that wooed Google remains, waiting for new, affordable options for fast Internet service. Continue reading
English: Availability of 4 Mbps-Capable Broadband Networks in the United States by County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Yesterday evening saw the launch of Next Century Cities, a US bipartisan, city-to-city initiative dedicated to ensuring the availability of next-generation broadband Internet for all communities. The 32 cities involved and their elected leaders are collaborating as they recognise the importance of using gigabit-level Internet to attract new businesses and create jobs, improve health care and education, and generally give residents new opportunities.
During the launch in Santa Monica, the mayors of Lafayette, Louisiana, and Chattanooga, Tennessee – both of whom preside over community gigabit cities – spoke at length about the difficulties they had to overcome in order to reap the rewards of having city-wide ultra-high speed broadband available to all at affordable prices. Continue reading
Trenching for a fiber optic installation in Worcester, Massachusetts (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
A plan that goes before San Francisco supervisors next week would speed up the installation of a fiber optic network in the city.
Under the proposal, the city’s Department of Technology would be required in many instances to make sure conduits for a fiber network are installed when trenches are dug for electrical or sewer work, according to a story in the San Francisco Examiner.
The goal, city officials say, is to expand the existing fiber network to provide a strong, quick wireless Internet service throughout the city.
Currently, San Francisco has 140 miles of fiber conduit that connects police stations, office buildings and public safety radio sites. The system provides free public WiFi along Market Street, in public buildings such as City Hall and in 32 public places where service was launched last week.
The “dig once” proposal was approved Monday by the supervisors’ Land Use and Economic Development Committee.
I am not convinced that the wording of this new law explicitly allows for the issue of bonds for broadband infrastructure. I do like the fact that California cities are changing road building practices and zoning to build broadband infrastructure. Also, I agree that fiber, ducts, right-of-ways, and other physical media components of a broadband network should be considered infrastructure. Governments know how to build long-term infrastructure projects for the most part which are too expensive for each service provider to do on their own. I wish more state and local governments would support policies allowing for the financing and building of broadband last-mile infrastructure.
Cities and other local agencies in California will be able to issue bonds to pay for building broadband infrastructure, thanks to two new laws approved by Governor Brown yesterday. Assembly bill 2292 and senate bill 628 expand the use of infrastructure financing districts (IFDs), on the one hand specifically allowing broadband to be included in old-style IFDs and creating a new kind, called enhanced infrastructure financing districts, on the other. In both cases, the bonds can be repaid by earmarking the incremental tax revenue that the project is expected to produce. Continue reading