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David Salway

David's Broadband Blog

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Pew Report: Internet Will Thrive by 2025

Saturday May 31, 2014

According to the IBM 5 in 5 Report - the future of broadband is bright.  The report is intriguing because it has been released for the past five years, making it the first year the results can be tracked for successful predictions.  If the prediction regarding eliminating the digital divide is true, the broadband market will truly have been transformed by the time it comes true. Currently, the adoption rate stands at just over 65% in most national and state surveys.

Cisco has been talking about its concept of the Internet of Everything - and even determined the value of a globally connected society.

The Internet of Everything is Transformational: Cisco continues the emphasize the monumental impact of a connected world

Now Pew has published its compilation and analysis of almost 2000 technology experts predictions of digital trends and innovation which will be enabled by broadband by 2025. The consensus of the experts polled was that broadband and access to the Internet "would become so deeply part of the environment that it would become "like electricity"--less visible even as it becomes more important in people's daily lives."

Pew Report: Future of Broadband Will be Bright: Wearable technology, augmented reality and immersive computing among the trends

Pew Internet: Internet of Things will Thrive by 2025: While innovative applications will transform life, issues will emerge

 

Pew Report: Broadband has Great Potential to Transform

Saturday May 31, 2014

According to a recently released report from the Pew Research Internet Project entitled The Internet of Things Will Thrive in 2025, broadband will facilitate a technology revolution and result in new applications and devices to improve quality of life.

In fact, the consensus of the nearly 2000 experts polled was that broadband and access to the Internet "would become so deeply part of the environment that it would become "like electricity"--less visible even as it becomes more important in people's daily lives."

Pew Internet: Internet of Things will Thrive by 2025: While innovative applications will transform life, issues will emerge

The Pew Report aligns with Cisco's vision of the Internet of Everything.  According to Cisco's Dave Evans,Chief Futurist; Chief Technology Officer: "When the history of IoE is written, its success or failure will be determined by answering one question: How did IoE benefit humanity? In the end, nothing else matters."

While noting that the Internet revolution would result in some negative ramifications, the report noted that most experts agreed that the following technology changes would occur:

  • A global, immersive, invisible, ambient networked computing environment
  • "Augmented reality" enhancements to the real-world input using portable/wearable/implantable technologies.
  • Disruption of business models established in the 20th century
  • Tagging, databasing, and intelligent analytical mapping of the physical and social realms

Pew Report: Future of Broadband will be Bright: Wearable technology, augmented reality and immersive computing among the trends

 

FCC Chair Cites Google Playbook in Congressional Testimony

Saturday May 31, 2014

Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chair Tom Wheeler testified in Congress recently during an oversight hearing.  Although Wheeler spoke about a wide range of issues facing the agency, the issue of net neutrality dominated much of the discussion.

FCC's Vision for Broadband: FCC Chair outlines strategy for broadband deployment and net neutrality

Wheeler also spoke about the importance of effective broadband deployment policies as a way to break down barriers to expanded broadband access.  He spoke specifically about Google's approach to deploying fiber in the cities the company selected to deploy gigabit networks in.

FCC: Google Fiber Playbook Could Serve as Broadband Deployment Model"Suggested FCC could adopt Google's deployment model

In early May 2014 the FCC voted to approve a set of rules to use current Section 706 authority to enforce net neutrality regulations. The vote was two supporting the rules, two against, and one "concurring."

FCC Approves Open Internet Rules: Vote among FCC Commissioners was divided along party lines

In a letter addressed to Chairman Wheeler and the four current FCC Commissioners, and signed by 28 broadband providers and industry associations, the message was loud and clear - regulation of broadband will harm deployment efforts, and halt innovation in the private sector.

Broadband Industry to FCC: Don't Regulate Broadband: Largest broadband providers and associations urge FCC restraint

While it isn't surprising that providers would express their opposition to any attempts to regulate the broadband industry, Wheeler is also facing criticism from other telecommunication giants and political heavyweights such as U.S. Senators, celebrities, and consumer groups.

FCC Chair Tom Wheeler Offers Vision for Net Neutrality

Saturday May 31, 2014

Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chair Tom Wheeler testified in Congress in May during an Energy and Commerce Committee oversight hearing.  Although Wheeler spoke a wide range of issues facing the agency, the issue of net neutrality dominated much of the discussion.  Facing criticism from Democrats and Republicans alike, Wheeler defended his position and the FCC's handling of the issue.

FCC's Vision for Broadband: FCC Chair outlines strategy for broadband deployment and net neutrality

In 2005, the FCC adopted a policy ascribing to the four principles of network neutrality.

What is Net Neutrality?

This policy stated that consumers are entitled to:

  • access the lawful Internet content of their choice.
  • run applications and use services of their choice, subject to the needs of law enforcement.
  • connect their choice of legal devices that do not harm the network.
  • competition among network providers, application and service providers, and content providers.

After the Courts dealt the FCC a number of setbacks challenging both the rules and the underlying authority to govern broadband providers as a telecommunication service, the federal agency had to regroup and analyze the impact of the rulings.  In 2010 FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski hoped that Congress would tackle the issue of net neutrality.  With the House firmly under Republican control and a public stance largely against the issue, this didn't happen.

The Evolution of Net Neutrality and the FCC: The FCC has been dealing with the issue of net neutrality for almost a decade

Fast forward to 2014 - with a new FCC Chair taking control of the agency.  In a statement released by the FCC, Tom Wheeler outlined a series of next steps he wanted his fellow commissioners to take.

Net Neutrality in 2014: Chairman Tom Wheeler's Reign Over the FCC:Enforcing net neutrality rules proving to be a rocky road for FCC Chair


Report: Google Exploring Wireless Service in Fiber Markets

Wednesday April 30, 2014

According to unconfirmed media reports, Google is exploring offering wireless broadband service in markets where the company has already deployed fiber networks. The report references internal communications promoting the idea of offering wireless services in the municipalities Google current is currently working with.

Google Expanding to Wireless Markets? Unconfirmed reports suggest telecom giant will offer wireless services

Not soon after Google announced that Austin, Texas would be the Internet giant's next metropolitan region to become a Google gigabit city, AT&T said it would also deploy an ultra-high speed broadband network.  However, AT&T's offer came with a simple condition - that it would receive the same concessions and terms from local officials.

As Google Fiber Networks Expand, Raleigh Plans Their Own Network

The Internet of Everything is Transformational: Cisco continues the emphasize the monumental impact of a connected world

Google Formalizes Request for Municipality Concessions

Earlier this year a Google Fiber Project executive offered advice to municipalities seeking providers for gigabit networks:

Gigabit Cities: Google's Advice to Hopefuls: Google executive offers advice to municipalities

The AT&T announcement was significant not for being a double gigabit city, but because the company was trying to emphasize how regulations encountered by traditional phone companies are a significant barrier to broadband deployment.

Gigabit Cities Growing in Popularity: Demand Increases After Google Fiber Projects and FCC Gigabit City Challenge

When Google announced the company's first Gigabit broadband network in Kansas City the benefits of ultra-fast Internet speeds were touted: "Over the past decade, the jump from dial-up to broadband has led to streaming online video, digital music sales, video conferencing over the web and countless other innovations that have transformed communication and commerce. We can't wait to see what new products and services will emerge as Kansas City moves from traditional broadband to ultra high-speed fiber optic connections."

Google Deploying Gigabit Broadband Networks in Three American Cities: Why are municipalities so anxious for gigabit broadband speeds?

 

FCC Chairman Wheeler Proposes Net Neutrality Changes

Wednesday April 30, 2014

In 2005, the FCC adopted a policy ascribing to the four principles of network neutrality.

What is Net Neutrality?

This policy stated that consumers are entitled to:

  • access the lawful Internet content of their choice.
  • run applications and use services of their choice, subject to the needs of law enforcement.
  • connect their choice of legal devices that do not harm the network.
  • competition among network providers, application and service providers, and content providers.

After the Courts dealt the FCC a number of setbacks challenging both the rules and the underlying authority to govern broadband providers as a telecommunication service, the federal agency had to regroup and analyze the impact of the rulings.  In 2010 FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski hoped that Congress would tackle the issue of net neutrality.  With the House firmly under Republican control and a public stance largely against the issue, this didn't happen.

Net Neutrality Continues to Dominate Internet Policy Debate: Further FCC action and intervention by Congress remain possible

Fast forward to 2014 - with a new FCC Chair taking control of the agency.  In a statement released by the FCC, Tom Wheeler outlined a series of next steps he wanted his fellow commissioners to take.

FCC and Net Neutrality in 2014: Tom Wheeler weighs on position of agency in light of recent court decisions

The White House also responded to a public petition regarding net neutrality by affirming the Obama Administration's support of a free an open Internet:

"Rights of free speech, and the free flow of information, are central to our society and economy -- and the principle of net neutrality gives every American an equal and meaningful opportunity to participate in both. Indeed, an open Internet is an engine for freedom around the world."

White House Committed to Net Neutrality: A response to a public petition effort affirms President's support

The debate intensified this week when FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler modified current net neutrality rules in place by the federal agency in 2010. Wheeler's proposal would allow deals between broadband providers and content delivery and service providers such as Neflix, Hulu or Skype regarding preferential treatment in the "last mile" to consumer's homes, as long as they act in a "commercially reasonable manner subject to review on a case-by-case basis."

FCC Chairman Wheeler Proposes Net Neutrality Rules: Does this weaken FCC's Net Neutrality Stance?

FCC Proposes Net Neutrality Regulations: Chairman Wheeler's proposal drawing fire from net neutrality proponents


AT&T Implementing Project VIP With Broadband Market Expansion

Wednesday April 30, 2014

AT&T is aggressively implementing a business strategy called Project VIP, announced in late 2013.  The plan to provide connectivity to over 300 million people by the end of 2014 includes both a wireless and wireline broadband strategy to expand broadband access in rural America.

AT&T Rolling Out Gigabit Broadband Networks in New Markets: Deployment strategy includes competing with Google in some cities

By investing $14 billion in both wireline and wireless technology, AT&T hopes to reach over 96% of all U.S. residents. Several recently announced initiatives align with Project VIP goals.  This includes plans to deploy gigabit broadband networks in several metropolitan markets - including those previously announced by Google.  In keeping pace with Google's deployment strategy, AT&T is also adding municipality collaboration to its gigabit broadband network deployment plans.

AT&T's announcement regarding expanding its Digital Life home security and automation services includes adding seven additional markets. The company also is waiving equipment and installation fees to new customers, and offering 50% discounts off standard equipment charges for existing customers who are upgrading packages.

AT&T Expands Broadband Market Demand: Expansion plans include gigabit deployments, home security and U-Verse

LRG Report: Cable and Telephone Companies Have 84.4 Million Subsribers

Wednesday April 30, 2014

According to Leichtman Research Group 2013 yielded 2.6 million new broadband subscribers for all U.S. cable and telephone providers. The LRG study noted that these same U.S. cable and telephone providers have over 84.4 million subscribers.

LRG Research Report: Broadband Providers Added 2.6 Million Subsribers in 2013: Cable and telephone companies provide broadband to 84.3 million U.S. subscribers

In the press release announcing the LRG findings, the following findings were noted:

  • The top cable companies netted 82% of the broadband additions in 2013 -- compared to 88% of the broadband additions in 2012
  • The top cable companies added nearly 2.2 million broadband subscribers in 2013 -- 89% of the total net additions for the top cable companies in 2012
  • Comcast added about 1.3 million broadband subscribers in 2013 -- accounting for 49% of the total net additions for the top providers in the year

FCC Report: Advertised Broadband Speeds Pretty Close to Actuals What is your broadband speed?

  • The top telephone providers added 480,000 broadband subscribers in 2013 -- 146% of the total net additions for the top telephone companies in 2012
  • AT&T and Verizon added 3.3 million fiber subscribers (via U-verse and FiOS) in 2013, while having a net loss of 3.05 million DSL subscribers. U-verse and FiOS broadband subscribers now account for 47% of Telco broadband subscribers -- up from 29% at the end of 2011.

AT&T Expands Broadband Market Demand: Expansion plans include gigabit deployments, home security and U-Verse

What is the Value of the Internet of Everything? $19 Trillion.

Monday March 31, 2014

Sometimes we lose sight of what broadband means for so many different industries. As people become more and more immersed in their profession or hobby, broadband becomes a critical facilitator of that pursuit. The use of broadband is often compared to the introduction of electricity in the United States. Broadband is even being defined by policy makers as a necessity, in the same category as electricity, heat, and phone service.

United Nations: Broadband Access is a Basic Human Right: Disconnection from the Internet is Against International Law

We also understand the importance of broadband for public safety and telemedicine. An informed police officer can keep us safer, and electronic health records can help us stay healthier - by keeping the focus on prevention, and increasing the size of the medical team, by adding remote healthcare team members from virtually anywhere.

AT&T Announces Plan to Deploy FTTH in Additional Markets: Borrows page from Google playbook by requesting municipality concessions

However, is is more difficult to measure the overall economic impact of the Internet, and everything that broadband access facilitates.  Cisco coined the phrase "Internet of Everything," to describe an era where almost everything is connected to a vast array of applications, services and devices.

ITU: National Broadband Strategies Significantly Improve Broadband Deployment: Broadband penetration rates 9% higher than countries without plans

Cisco's definition of the Internet of Everything is "bringing together people, process, data, and things to make networked connections more relevant and valuable than ever before-turning information into actions that create new capabilities, richer experiences, and unprecedented economic opportunity for businesses, individuals, and countries."

Google's Successful Broadband Deployment Strategy: Broadband competitors try using the same business model

While almost everyone agrees that an interconnected world world creates tremendous opportunities for innovation and economic development, there has been a wide range of estimates regarding the amount of economic development this would provide.

Broadband as an Economic Driver: What Are the Economic Benefits of Broadband?

In a keynote speech delivered by Cisco CEO John Chambers at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas in early 2014, an estimate of $19 trillion would be realized by allowing devices and applications to communicate over the Internet."

Cisco: Internet of Everything Worth $19 Trillion


Broadband Report: U.S. Holds Strong Global Broadband Position

Monday March 31, 2014

In a recently released report enthusiastically embraced by the broadband provider community, American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research (AEI) concluded that the United States is leading the global broadband race.  Specifically, the report counters previous assertions regarding European dominance in the broadband market.

AEI Report: Broadband in United States Stronger than European Counterparts: New report attempts to challenge New America's 2013 report

The AEI report emphasizes the following points:

  • Contrary to popular opinion regarding European dominance in broadband deployment, Europe's broadband system is  highly fragmented and is in need of overall improvement.
  • The American market-led approach of facilities-based competition has resulted in greater investment in next-generation broadband technologies.  In fact, many European leaders are increasingly abandoning their regulatory approach and looking to the US broadband model.
  • The European Union should simplify and reduce regulation of broadband providers, remove barriers to consolidation, and embrace a market-led, technology-neutral approach to broadband.

Undoubtedly, not everyone would agree with the conclusions reached in the report.  Several previously published reports highlight the position of the United States with regard to global broadband rankings, available speeds, broadband adoption, competition, and pricing.  U.S. Telecom used the  AEI report to counter a New America report released in 2013:

New America Report Criticizes U.S. Broadband Efforts: New America cites higher prices and lower speeds in American cities

More objective analysis of the broadband market has been previously reported by the FCC, NTIA, and the Pew Internet Research Center.  The Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) tracks various global broadband statistics and rankings.

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