Google Fiber’s ambitions have drawn both bearish and bullish views from analysts, but new data from the U.S. Copyright Office shows that the initiative is not yet setting the world on fire, at least with respect to the number of video customers who have signed on so far.
Google Fiber ended 2015 with just north of 53,000 video subs, according to a blog post from MoffettNathanson analyst Craig Moffett that pointed to fresh data from the U.S. Copyright Office.
The number’s a bit of a mixed bag. In Moffett’s view, Google Fiber’s rate of video growth is strong, but should be stronger. Continue reading
iProvo has had a tough time making a go of their network initiative, but now Veracity is doing much better. Veracity is marketing the network and selling services as well as maintaining the network. They are generating cash so Provo can make the bond payments minus some operating expenses. Over time they should be able to generate cash to make the bond payments, operate the network, and eek out a modest profit. The Provo example shows that municipalities need private sector partners with experience in operating broadband networks and a business.
After five years, a couple of owners and few other course corrections, Provo’s fiberoptic network, otherwise known as iProvo, seems to be coming of age, according to Mayor John Curtis.
As he looks back on the year, Curtis said he felt talking to residents about what the fiber optic network is, and is not, has been a benchmark.
OCTOBER 19, 2010 — Lyfe Communications, Inc. (OTCBB: LYFE) Connected Lyfe, provider of converged network services, says it has reached an agreement to acquire television broadcast rights from the Utah Telecommunications Open Infrastructure Agency (UTOPIA). The company’s television service includes local and basic cable network channels, a premium or extended channel package, and individual add on channel packages.
UTOPIA provides open access fiber to the home (FTTH) infrastructure to 16 communities in Utah.
By Craig Settles
Municipal broadband networks may the fastest way for smaller communities — and those in areas without much competition — to bring better broadband to their businesses and residents. These networks aren’t generally popular with incumbent communications providers, which have a history of suing to stop them. However, their tactics have changed.
In 2005, the main goal of large incumbent telcos and cable companies was to try for an outright ban on municipal networks. As the public vigorously fought back, incumbents switched to creative assaults on communities’ ability to find or use money to pay for networks. Eighteen states have restrictive muni network legislation (see map) that makes building a community-owned network impossible or difficult, especially when it comes to funding them.
By Sean Buckley
When the Utah Telecommunication Open Infrastructure Agency (UTOPIA) open access Fiber to the Home (FTTH) emerged in 2002, it was heralded as a hero by extending broadband to areas where the incumbents just did not feel they could make a good business case work. But ongoing financial losses and a lower than expected subscriber base, has forced UTOPIA to realign its strategy.
To get its vision off the ground, UTOPIA has asked its 11 member cities to join together to form the Utah Infrastructure Agency, whose goal would be to raise up to $60 million to finish building out its network. Although UTOPIA said in May it required more money to complete the network, this week was the first time it has laid out its new strategy that its member cities still need to approve. In addition, UTOPIA put in a bid to participate in Google’s Fiber Communities program in February.
The sponsoring cities and UTOPIA have the right concept. UTOPIA is now being better managed, and the network penetration is increasing. I know that they can start meeting their objectives and eventually be profitable, but their members need to continue to invest in them. The $54,000 that the city of Brigham needs to contribute to keep UTOPIA going is a small price to pay for the economic and consumer benefits the network brings. I’ve seen cities blow that much money on studies that are never implemented and just sit on a shelf. I hope Brigham residents and the council have the foresight to continue investing in this valuable asset.
By Nancy B. Fuller (Standard-Examiner correspondent)
BRIGHAM CITY — After months of rumors, the Brigham City Council had its first formal meeting with UTOPIA executive directors on options for implementation and long-term commitments for the city to continue with the fiber-optic network.
The meeting was held one hour before the regular city council meeting, which didn’t leave enough time for council members to address their concerns, so the council requested another meeting with UTOPIA.
Leonard Grace, Expert Opinion, BroadbandBreakfast.com
Utopia: the definition brings about visions of an “ideal place or state”, or “a system of political and social perfection.” Thus became the name chosen for a consortium of sixteen Utah cities building their own broadband infrastructure with a fiber-to-the-premise architecture, while offering residents a clear and alternative choice to incumbent operators, including Quest and Comcast. Is it perfection or fantasy?