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Highlights from SCTE Cable-Tec EXPO

As a product manager and engineer, I really enjoy attending the technology-oriented Cable-Tec Expo each year. It has a stronger technology focus than many other industry trade shows and it's always a good opportunity to talk to the engineering teams from all of the operators and vendors. more

The European Commission Proposes Charging Data-Heavy Streamers for Telecom Upgrades

The European Union has launched a consultation on a proposal that would require technology companies, such as Netflix and Alphabet Inc., who use the most bandwidth to help pay for the next generation of internet infrastructure. more

The 12 GHz Battle

A big piece of what the FCC does is to weigh competing claims to use spectrum. It seems like there have been non-stop industry fights over the last decade on who gets to use various bands of spectrum. One of the latest fights, which is the continuation of a battle going on since 2018, is for the use of the 12 GHz spectrum. The big wrestling match is between Starlink's desire to use the spectrum to communicate with its low-orbit satellites and cellular carriers and WISPs... more

Internet Suffers Significant Slowdowns After Michael Jackson’s Death

Maggie Shiels reporting from BBC: "The internet suffered a number of slowdowns as people the world over rushed to verify accounts of Michael Jackson's death. Search giant Google confirmed to the BBC that when the news first broke it feared it was under attack. Millions of people who searched for the star's name on Google News were greeted with an error page. It warned users 'your query looks similar to automated requests from a computer virus or spyware application'." more

China and Taiwan Recognize Starlink’s Military Value

When Russia invaded Ukraine, SpaceX had around 2,000 satellites in orbit. It was clear from the first day of the war that a low-Earth orbit (LEO) constellation of around 2,000 satellites would be a valuable military and civilian asset. The first truckload of Starlink terminals arrived in Ukraine on February 28, 2022, four days after the invasion. By March 19, there were 5,000 terminals in Ukraine and 150,000 active daily users by May 2nd.China and Taiwan have both seen the strategic value of 2,000 Starlink satellites. more

WiMAX Has Early Lead Over LTE, Says New Report

Mobile WiMAX will outpace LTE over the next few years due to its head start on deployments, reports In-Stat. While WiMAX and LTE will take very different paths, the report suggests Mobile WiMAX already has commercial deployments where as LTE won't be commercially available until late 2009. more

2016 US Presidential Election Likely to Have Major Impact on Broadband Expansion and Regulation

"The 2016 presidential election is likely to have a major impact on how the US government tries to expand broadband deployment and how it regulates Internet service providers," writes Jon Brodkin in Ars Technica. more

Google and Facebook Join Forces to Directly Connect Los Angeles to Hong Kong via Undersea Cable

TE SubCom, leading provider of undersea communications technology and marine services, along with Facebook, Google, and PLDC (Pacific Light Data Communication Co. Ltd.), have announced that they will co-build the Pacific Light Cable Network (PLCN), a 12,800 km transpacific submarine cable system that will provide the first direct undersea route between Hong Kong and Los Angeles, California (USA) with ultra-high capacity transmission. more

No Ifs, Ands or Butts, the New FCC Must Focus on Neutrality

The Denver Post today urged a new FCC to get its mind off of "buttocks" and onto more serious issues like Net Neutrality. The editorial board was referring to a case now before the U.S. Court of Appeals, in which the agency's top legal minds are trying to determine the appropriate definition for the human posterior to better guide efforts to fine ABC for a few errant cheeks featured on a 2003 episode of NYPD Blue. more

FCC Chair Kevin Martin Makes His Departure Official, Announces Resignation

In his last meeting today, Federal Communication Commission (FCC) chairman Kevin J. Martin, announced that he will be leaving the commission and will not be staying in the Obama administration. While the chairman had previously declined commenting on his future plans, the departure did not come unexpected. In the statement after announcing his departure at the FCC meeting, Martin also mentioned that he would depart Jan. 20 to become a Senior Fellow at the Aspen Institute in Washington, D.C. This announcement follows reports that President-elect Barack Obama will nominate Julius Genachowski to be the next FCC chairman. more

Google Begins Using New Undersea Cable Across Asia

Google starts using its new undersea cable to speed up Internet services in Asia. more

Solar Storms Threaten Broadband and Power Grids: Understanding the Impacts and Preparations

Many readers will have seen recent news that the aurora borealis, or northern lights, were visible deep into the South for several days. This phenomenon is caused by a geomagnetic storm that is caused by strong solar flares. Solar flares can cause problems on Earth by emitting clouds of magnetized particles and hot plasma. more

Blocking or Metering Broadband Access is a False Choice, Says New Report

n a report released today by the Free Press, Derek Turner, Research Director argues that, in light of recent FCC ruling against Comcast, it is a "false choice" to believe that "because application blocking is out of bounds, providers now will be forced to use some type of 'metering' to control network congestion." In other words, if ISPs are not allowed to block applications, then usage-based pricing is NOT their only other viable option, asserts Turner. more

Is Fiber Growth Slowing?

In a recent article in LightReading, Mike Dano cites data from industry analyst Cowan that shows that some of the largest fiber builders in the United States have already trimmed back their construction plans for 2023. AT&T has the largest retrenchment and is trimming 2023 plans from 3.5 to 4 million passings back to 2 to 2.5 million. The company says that it is not changing its long-term goal to reach 30 million passings with fiber, but a cutback of this size means it won't likely reach that target in 2025. more

Internet Connection Speeds Up by 11% Globally Since Last Quarter of 2008

In the "Sate of the Internet Report" released by Akamai for the first quarter of 2009, the company reports that, on a global basis, the average connection speed increased by approximately 11% and more than 120 countries had average connection speeds under 1 Mbps (report based on date Q4 2008 through Q1 2009). Through Akamai's view of the Internet traffic (reported at approximately 1 billion users per day), the company also notes that in the first quarter of 2009, Japan had the highest percentage of connections (57%) at speeds above 5 Mbps while South Korea fell to second place for high broadband connectivity in the first quarter. more