Monday, May 7, 2012

Imagine Universal Access to Gigabit Broadband

Stories about broadband access often catch my eye. I came across this story over the weekend and I must say that I'm both amused and amazed. Remember when Google offered to bring Gigabit Internet to one city? Remember how cities around the country lobbied to get that kind of high speed network infrastructure?

So what would you say if I told you that three cities had already built out their own Gigabit network? If you had to guess, where would you imagine that they would be? Mountain View? Redwood City? How about Chattanooga Tennessee, Lafayette Louisiana, and Bristol Virginia?

This is the story of how these smaller cities built out their own high-speed network as a municipal utility service. It's a story of how they had to battle the telecom and cable companies who lobbied heavily against the public services. And it's also a small window into the vast potential of the networks that we could have access to if we weren't being stymied by the profiteering of the incumbent providers. In Chattanooga, their slowest tier is 30Mbps symmetrical. Imagine what that would mean to the cost of doing business.

You should really download the white paper. Even if you only read the first part, it's totally worth the read!

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